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The Conquering Sword of Conan (Conan the Cimmerian #3)

4.33  ·  Rating Details ·  3,178 Ratings  ·  73 Reviews
–Harry Turtledove

In a meteoric career that covered only a dozen years, Robert E. Howard defined the sword-and-sorcery genre. In doing so, he brought to life the archetypal adventurer known to millions around the world as Conan the barbarian.

Witness, then, Howard at his
Paperback, 416 pages
Published November 29th 2005 by Del Rey (first published 1935)
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The Sacred Band by Janet E. MorrisThe Complete Chronicles of Conan by Robert E. HowardElric of Melniboné by Michael MoorcockSwords and Deviltry by Fritz LeiberThe Fish the Fighters and the Song-Girl by Janet E. Morris
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13th out of 464 books — 330 voters
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Best of the Pulp Magazine Authors and Literature
27th out of 348 books — 159 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Jul 06, 2008 Seth rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
Howard's "Conan" stories have a legendary aura around them, but some of their mystique comes from the horrible pastiches written like Conan - and later stuff like DeCamp's actual Conan stories themselves, most of which are sub-par. DAW's third book concludes the Conan cycle with the last bits of uncut, completely raw stories, all as Howard would want them.

Conan stories are best when they capture and magify the gloomy, headstrong personality of the creator, and two of the stories in here, "Beyond
Jul 11, 2008 Daniel rated it liked it
This collection contains longer Conan works, including "By the Black River", in which Howard laid out many of his theories and thoughts about the decadence of the civilized world.
This book is the final in a series of three collections from Del Ray (the other two being Coming of Conan the Cimmerian and Bloody Crown of Conan) that collect the entire corpus of Robert E. Howard’s writings about his now well-known, if often misunderstood, barbarian hero. This volume contains the last stories written by REH about Conan, including Beyond the Black River and Red Nails, which are apparently (and deservedly) two of the more famous of the Conan stories.

As a recent, but avid, fan of
Oct 15, 2009 Cwn_annwn_13 rated it it was amazing
Having read the old 1-12 series of Conan paperbacks religiously when I was teenager and going back to re-read the stories from time to time I was VERY happy when these were put back into print in nice and inexpensive volumes that were unedited pure Robert E. Howard written versions of the stories. Conan is a much deeper character than the public, even those that have read Conan, seem to understand. As well as Howard does not get the credit he deserves from the mainstream. As I have said before t ...more
Christopher Sutch
Aug 05, 2009 Christopher Sutch rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Although the editor makes much of Howard's growth as a writer by this stage of his career, shortly before his suicide at age 30, only two stories in this collection are worth anything ("Beyond the Black River" and "Red Nails"). The other stories are rehashes or mediocre attempts that don't even hang together (e.g. "The Flesh Eaters of Zamboula"). And the editor entirely fails to even mention Howard's racism. Yes, he was writing at a time when racial attitudes toward African-Americans were nearly ...more
Mike (the Paladin)
Feb 21, 2010 Mike (the Paladin) rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
I don't know, I have the hard back but it wasn't listed...

This is the third volume of the three volume set of Howard's versions of the Conan stories. It contains:
"The Servants of Bit-Yakin"
Beyond the Black River
The Black Stranger
"The Man-Eaters of Zamboula"
Red Nails
Untitled Notes: "The Westermark: ..."
"Wolves Beyond the Border", Draft A
"Wolves Beyond the Border", Draft B
The Black Stranger, Synopsis A
The Black Stranger, Synopsis B
"The Man-Eaters of Zamboula", Synopsis
Red Nails, Draft
Dan Schwent
Aug 26, 2011 Dan Schwent rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Conquering Sword of Conan is the third and final volume in Wandering Star's Robert E. Howard collection of Conan stories. I'll be reviewing them as I read them. That's the plan, anyway.

The Servants of Bit-Yatkin: The Servants of Bit-Yatkin is a story about Conan scouring a ruined temple in the jungle for the Teeth of Gwahlur, a cache of priceless jewels. Complicating matters are the priests who have come to the temple to consult the oracle, as well as the deceased Bit-Yatkin's servants.

I alw
Apr 01, 2010 Jonah rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
East Bay J
May 07, 2012 East Bay J rated it it was amazing
And, with the third and final installment of the complete, unadulterated Robert E. Howard Conan stories, we have the final piece of proof, should any more be needed, that this is how anyone and everyone interested in reading Conan should do so.

I could leave this review right there but reading these books lead to research and contemplation, which leads to the following…

Speaking to the “coauthored” Conan stories and the dozens of pastiches, I present a fine article by Dashiell Hammett Tour leader,
J.G. Keely
It's disappointing the way modern critics often fail to address issues of race as they are presented in books from earlier time periods. Sure, when writing of Howard and Lovecraft (or even Twain and Poe) critics will not fail to repeat some notion that their racism is 'an unfortunate artifact of that time and culture'--but that is not the same as actually meeting the issue of race head on and dealing with what it means in a text.

The way an author approaches race is an integral part of their worl
May 02, 2012 Mark rated it liked it
Recommends it for: libertarians
Fun- but not AS fun as the earlier stories. Too much hardcore realism; not enough existential threats to existence, baroque conspiracy. It is great to finally get to see the Picts in action, but two of their stories in a row wore a bit thin. Also, they just don't make geopolitical sense; Aquilona, as the clearly dominant regional power, should punch through for a warm water port. They are NOT the Native Americans; they don't have a whole continent at their back. Theirs is such a comparatively na ...more
Brad Wheeler
Call this 3.5 stars. I'm a big fan of Howard's Conan mythos; it's some of the only sword-and-sorcery fantasy that I enjoy. This collection, however, failed to grab me as most of the Conan stories do and I'm still trying to figure out why.

Here's what I've come up with so far. First, Conan is way too powerful. Obviously, he's always been powerful, right from the beginning, but in the earlier stories he seems to lose more battles. He gets captured, knocked unconscious, ensorcelled, whatever. Instea
Mar 21, 2016 Jean-marcel rated it really liked it
here we go then, the last of the three Conan anthologies. Everything in these has been presented in the order they were written (not necessarily published) rather than in any attempt to create a chronology for Conan's stories. I like this for two reasons: Firstly it allows us to see how Howard developed and exactly when he fell into a formula, and when he again tried different things to still make that formula interesting; and because it feels more naturalistic this way, like we're listening to ...more
Oct 01, 2012 Michael rated it it was amazing
Crom! Sadly, these are the last Conan stories that Robert E. Howard ever wrote. He definitely finishes with a bang though. What makes these stories especially interesting is how much the stories vary from one another. "Beyond the Black River", which is considered to be one of the best Conan stories, features Conan defending a fort on the edge of civilization. "The Black Stranger" is a great swashbuckling pirate adventure where all of the main characters take turns stabbing each other in the back ...more
Apr 02, 2014 Brian rated it it was amazing
"Barbarism is the natural state of mankind," the borderer said, staring somberly at the Cimmerian. "Civilization is unnatural. It is a whim of circumstance. And barbarism must always ultimately triumph."
-Robert E. Howard, "Beyond the Black River"
I started this last volume with trepidation, since my experiences with Clark Ashton Smith and Fritz Leiber had taught me to expect a decline over the course of the writer's oeuvre culminating in either mediocrity or active disgust on my part, but my expe
Feb 17, 2015 Ian rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
This was the first anthology of the original Conan stories that I read in my quest to get through all three so I can say I've read the most ripped-off fantasy works of the 20th Century (Howard / Tolkien). Strangely enough, I decided to read them backwards and started with the third book, featuring Howard's final set of Conan adventures. The real standout here is the most famous Conan story of all - "Red Nails." This one moves at a great clip and has some of the most memorable villains and settin ...more
Jun 30, 2013 Tayvonne rated it really liked it
The best stories are told in the volume. I enjoyed the two preceding books but this one, holding his most prized works, felt like I was reading when he hit his stride. He knew what he had done with the character before and what he wanted to do so I felt more confidence in the writing style and I definitely saw a lot more skill.

No matter how much I love Conan and people love Howard sometimes his writing does come off as stiff and quite bad. This book clear up most of the hurdles I had with his e
Michael Battaglia
Oct 03, 2013 Michael Battaglia rated it it was amazing
For one reason or another, Robert Howard had some fascination with the Picts, who make a case for being Conan's best recurring villain, which is impressive considering how many antagonists who are thought to be constant foils for Conan only really appeared in one story (I'm looking at you, Thoth-Amon). Either the Picts either came to Howard in a dream and ticked him off, or they just caught his eye to stand in for a general lack of civilization. Whatever the case is, they massed and painted pres ...more
Jun 25, 2014 Evgeny rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
This book is notable for two hard-to-find tales from Conan universe from the creator of the most famous barbarian himself. There is not much to say about Conan the Barbarian tales: they are still fun to read despite their age. The plot of the most stories can be outlined in the following way. A problem comes to Conan, usually started by an evil sorcerer. Conan solves the problem using his sword, or even just bare fists taking care of the bad guy along the way.

I will give more details about the
Jul 13, 2014 Bryan rated it really liked it
After reading this book, I have now read all 21 of the original Robert E. Howard-penned Conan stories. Some were good, some were bad, and some were excellent. I'll review the stories from this volume individually.

The Servants Of Bit-Yakin: A mediocre-at-best Conan story, and one which I've read a number of times over the years, usually under the title "Jewels Of Gwahlur". It contains the usual Howard racism and simperingly idiotic female companion without much of Howard's typically highly charge
Newton Nitro
Apr 11, 2016 Newton Nitro rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
E infelizmente chego ao fim de todos os textos originais do Conan, escritos pelo Robert E. Howard. Eu já estou familiarizado com a melancolia que sinto ao terminar um livro ou uma série de livros que me envolveram em sua leitura, mas dessa vez é maior, pois sinto uma grande pena por termos perdido Howard muito cedo, no momento em que sua escrita amadurecia e mostrava um potencial literário fantástico. Nesse terceiro volume estão duas das melhores histórias de Conan, “Beyond the Black River” e a ...more
Benjamin Thomas
By finishing this book, I have now read all of the original Conan stories by Robert E. Howard. It was not always the easiest journey as some tales are certainly better than others. But the publisher’s decision to present these stories over three volumes in the order they were written instead of chronological order was the right one, I believe, as it is wonderful to see Howard’s skills as a writer grow.

This volume, the final set of the Conan saga, includes only five stories, evidence of the lengt
Orren Merton
Jun 07, 2014 Orren Merton rated it really liked it
Of the three illustrated Conan the Cimmerian books that cover all of Robert E. Howard's original Conan stories, the third one probably includes less classic tales than the first two. Never the less, REH's Conan adventures are still vibrant and entertaining, his characters fun (even if some of his language is anachronistic to us these days). The paintings in the book are also top notch, and there's enough miscellany in the back to be really interesting to Conan and REH completists.

If you've not
Timothy Boyd
Jan 27, 2016 Timothy Boyd rated it it was amazing
YES!! the Conan stories restored to their original texts. Read Conan as Howard intended him to be. You will find that Conan is more than just a big semi-naked barbarian with a sword. He speaks and reads many languages and thinks his way through a lot of what he encounters. But then when that doesn't work he can swing a sword with the best of them. Highly recommended
Hilmi Isa
Nov 28, 2015 Hilmi Isa rated it really liked it
Shelves: classics-read
The Conquering Sword of Conan merupakan salah satu daripada tiga buku koleksi yang menghimpunkan kesemua karya asli Robert E. Howard yang meletakkan Conan the Cimmerian sebagai watak utamanya. Buku ini juga merupakan buku yang terakhir dan pelengkap kepada koleksi ini.

Di dalam buku kali ini,terdapat lima buah cerita pendek,iaitu:

a) The Servants of Bit-Yakin

b) Beyond the Black River

c) The Black Stranger

d) The Man-Eaters of Zamboula

e) Red Nails

Turutan cerita-cerita ini disusun adalah berdasarkan
A. E. S.
Man-Eaters of Zamboula (formerly Shadows in Zamboula): Conan ignores a dire warning and gets a rude surprise during his stay at an inn in Zamboula - all the slaves there are cannibals. The use of irony here is that Conan knows the entire time the naked girl he sees chasing her crazed lover in the street is Nafertari, mistress to the crazed satrap. Conan has bigger fish to fry for almost feeding him to the natives: he ditches both of them to get his revenge on the tavern owner. Guess the use of i ...more
Peter Carrier
"A wolf was no less a wolf because a whim of chance caused him to run with the watch-dogs."

Howard's frenetic prose and stark vision are on full display in this work. The final volume in the collected works of Conan displays Howard's growth as a writer and cements his legacy as one of the greatest contributors in the fantasy genre. At last, Howard offers his uncompromising view of civilization against the contrast of barbarism in two tales taken from this collection: "The Black Stranger" and "Red
Damien Sulla-Menashe
Mar 31, 2016 Damien Sulla-Menashe rated it really liked it
The third collection of Conan stories does not disappoint. These stories are more refined than the first two collections and more often you see the hero from another point of view. By expanding the perspective and introducing more complex characters, the world becomes more real and relatable. Otherwise there's plenty of spooky monsters and oversized villains that are fearlessly conquered by the unstoppable Conan. His barbarianism is always used as an advantage over the more civilized man. At dif ...more
Oct 04, 2016 Beth rated it it was amazing
So, confession, I love the Schwarzenegger Conan movie. Seriously, love it. But that was really my only exposure to the Conan stories until this collection came into my hands. Howard is brilliant in these longer stories. His use of language and imagery is brilliant, his characters are well-crafted, and the stories are perfectly paced adventures. They're very much a product of their time, but also timeless in their commentary on the nature of humanity, monsters, and the line between civilization a ...more
Daniel Mccallister
Oct 11, 2016 Daniel Mccallister rated it it was amazing
Final Howard Conan stories. Great stuff!!
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  • The Savage Sword of Conan, Volume 1
  • Conan, Vol. 1: The Frost Giant's Daughter and Other Stories
  • Conan of Aquilonia (Book 11)
  • Conan the Destroyer (Conan, #6)
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  • The End of the Story
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  • Elric: Song of the Black Sword (Eternal Champion, #5)
  • Ill Met in Lankhmar (Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser, #1-2)
  • Blood and Thunder: The Life and Art of Robert E. Howard
Robert Ervin Howard was an American pulp writer of fantasy, horror, historical adventure, boxing, western, and detective fiction. Howard wrote "over three-hundred stories and seven-hundred poems of raw power and unbridled emotion" and is especially noted for his memorable depictions of "a sombre universe of swashbuckling adventure and darkling horror."

He is well known for having created — in the p
More about Robert E. Howard...

Other Books in the Series

Conan the Cimmerian (3 books)
  • The Coming of Conan the Cimmerian (Conan the Cimmerian, #1)
  • The Bloody Crown of Conan (Conan the Cimmerian, #2)

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