Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Pirates of Venus” as Want to Read:
Pirates of Venus
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Read Book* *Different edition

Pirates of Venus

(Venus #1)

3.69  ·  Rating details ·  1,404 ratings  ·  102 reviews
The shimmering, cloud-covered planet of Venus conceals a wondrous secret: the strikingly beautiful yet deadly world of Amtor. In Amtor, cities of immortal beings flourish in giant trees reaching thousands of feet into the sky; ferocious beasts stalk the wilderness below; rare flashes of sunlight precipitate devastating storms; and the inhabitants believe their world is sau ...more
Kindle Edition, 160 pages
Published November 7th 2016 by Jovian Press (first published 1932)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Pirates of Venus, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Pirates of Venus

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
3.69  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,404 ratings  ·  102 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Nov 21, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I put A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court down mid-read, and said to myself, "I want a real adventure. One without out the dry preachings of politics. I want a simple epic story."

After saying this, I went down to my local Pike's Peak library and picked up the first two books in Edgar Rice Burrough's Venus series. I, being a virgin to Burroughs, did not know what to expect.

I was hooked by the first couple of chapters. Missing Mars for Venus, exploring a new planet, fighting alien spider
Although a case can be made for “science fiction” either inspiring or anticipating scientific developments over the course of the last century, there is very little “science” in the “science fiction” of Edgar Rice Burroughs. Pirates of Venus is no exception. Outside of the speculative suggestion of launching a rocket using, essentially, “rocket sled” technology and the fascinating discussion where the protagonist attempts to use the differences in distances at the equatorial circumference of Ven ...more
Apr 27, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Did not finish. Reasons to come soon.
David B
Sep 28, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The plot is vintage (cliché?) Burroughs--stalwart Earthman finds himself alone on an alien world, rescues a beautiful princess, wins her love, and becomes the ruler of a mighty empire. Although there is nothing new in the plot, ERB at his best has a way of writing a tale that just zings along from adventure to adventure in a very enjoyable way, making for fast, fun, escapist reading. This is the literary equivalent of comfort food.
Nicholas Hansen
Sep 17, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Don't let the name fool you, this isn't your typical 70's sci-fi novel, mainly because it was written in the 30's. That means that you will go on a planet hopping adventure pre lunar landing era. That was a time when most fantasy and sci-fi had heavy Greek, and Mesopotamia leanings so you will see many alien cultures coincidently resembling them. Also expect aliens who are little different then man, only altered by slight differences in stature, skin color, and bizarre alien customs.
This story
Jul 27, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
I have the Ace edition of this. Carson Napier, the hero, is no John Carter, but the Venus series is fun and inventive. This is the first in the series but ends rather abruptly and you need to go immediately to the next, "Lost on Venus," to get closure.

Still, you've gotta love ERB's endless inventive imagination.
Apr 30, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Pirates of Venus is fairly obviously a sci-fi adventure. One which was purchased for its obvious absurd title. One which has all the quirks of early sci-fi. Here, we have the daring space explorer, a bored and rich young man who is resourceful and muscular and dashing, who makes women fall for him at the sight of him. We have incredibly outdated science (after all, Venus is now known to be uninhabitable for life as we know it, let alone for complex humanoid populations and massive vegetation). W ...more
Jun 30, 2017 rated it liked it
So politically incorrect that sometimes it's physically painful to read but seeing as this is 1930s pulp science fiction, anyone who picks it up shouldn't be shocked. Yet so grotesquely campy, it was impossible for me to stop reading. It's like a train wreck in slow motion.

Swashbuckling aliens in loin cloths battling with ray guns and swords. Oh and bird men. And a supremely virginal princess complete with heaving bosom...

God forgive me, it was too ridiculously funny to put down.
Lilyn G. | Sci-Fi & Scary
In our quest to conquer the science fiction classics, we ended up needing to read two books from Edgar Rice Burroughs. The first was Princess of Mars, the second was Pirates of Venus. Princess of Mars was rip-roaring dimestore fun that made you grin the entire time you were reading it. Pirates of Venus... was not.

Full review up later.
Stephen Gallup
My remembered impression of the Venus series was that it ranked among ERB's best, and on this return the first book of the set did not disappoint. It's a compelling yarn concerning a young man with plenty of money and not much concern about what happens to him, who constructs a rocket with the idea of going to Mars. Due to a whopper of a miscalculation, he misses that destination, begins a fall toward the Sun, and is saved only by becoming caught in the gravitational field of Venus so that he la ...more
Dec 14, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This is the first in Edgar Rice Burroughs' 5th sf/adventure series, and it is a huge step down from Tarzan, Barsoom, Pellucidar, and Caspak. Carson Napier, who can astrally project himself to anywhere on Earth, decides that isn't enough, and builds a spaceship to Mars. However, he did not include the Moon's gravitational pull in his calculations and misses Mars altogether. Luckily Venus stops his plunge into the Sun. Venus is a cloud-covered world. (Burroughs still playing along with Arrhenius' ...more
A space-mission gone wrong forces Carson Napier to crash-land on Venus. The ingredients for some good, classic sci-fi are all there: an unknown planet, strange creatures, a few good guys, a lot of bad guys and a beautiful extra-terrestrial woman. All this makes for an entertaining read!T

I quite enjoy Burrough's writing and he manages to put in some social criticism along the way. There has been a revolution on Venus and the lower class has forced their opponents to hide far away, after purging a
Rick Hautala
Feb 23, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sometimes Burroughs isn't so good, but in this case, in spite of a few "coincidences" that shade into disbelief, PIRATES is a fun "space" adventure with plenty of action and a fairly realistic and likeable protagonist ... Not great literature, by any means, but a fun way to pass a gloomy afternoon ...
Jul 29, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
I'm relatively new to the work of ERB, but it seems to me he just keeps writing the same story over and over. This was not as much fun as The Moon Maid, was a real struggle to finish, and ends on a cliffhanger.
Steve Walker
Jul 16, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Burroughs has a formula and all of his stories are the same. But he does it differently so well. His worlds are real. Good guys are good, bad guys are bad. Good triumphs.

This is the martian series set in Venus. I like the martian series just slightly better, but they are close. Read dozens of times over the years and every book is just as good as the first
Nov 12, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Thoroughly enjoyable - you must keep in mind that it was published in 1932, however.
This is good ol' fashioned sci-fi. Highly imaginative but not far from the human experience. Plot moves very quickly, characters although alien and somewhat shallow nonetheless work well.
H. P.
Jun 25, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: vintage-sf
One of the high-level changes that separates modern speculative fiction from the old stuff is the balkanization of science fiction among hard science fiction, social science fiction, and adventure fiction. You know that wasn’t always so, but the brain still wants to categorize based on the immediate examples to come to mind, so you wind up categorizing that old book anyway, usually as adventure fiction. Nobody would write about a hard science fiction novel today about a guy trying to fly to Mars ...more
Robin Helweg-Larsen
Aug 15, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sf-f
This book, which is as much fantasy as science fiction, is so shoddily imagined that I could not be bothered to finish it.

Shoddy fantasy: in chapter 1 the narrator has a psychic visitation in his room. Okay, we'll allow that. Then the sender of the visitation comes to his office building, is allowed in by security, a secretary, is brought to the narrator's office by a colleague. The colleague leaves, and shortly after the sender goes out through a wall - it was another psyhic visitation. Okay, w
The first of five Carson Napier novels involving the planet Venus. The novel was serialized in Argosy Magazine and then published as a full length novel in 1934. Burroughs' novels are sometimes muddling, but at his best, he really could spin a tale. Pirates of Venus is one of his really good, non-Tarzan works of fiction. The story line is well thought out, and while his descriptions of the planet Venus are fantastical and scientifically wrong, they do not alter the story's credibility one bit. H ...more
This is an offshoot from the Tarzan series book: ‘Tarzan at the Earth’s Core’ where he goes on an expedition into the earth’s core and discovers Pellucidar. The story of Pellucidar continues in its own 7 book series of the same name. This book takes off from about the middle of the Pellucidar series. If you haven’t read any of these you will probably be confused at first but hang in there because the story quickly diverts to the Venus storyline. Also don’t the talk of Mars confuse you. It doesn’ ...more
Ryan Case
Classic level science fiction/adventure fans will enjoy - but obviously it's a bit "old". Edgar Rice Burroughs is obviously one of the best storytellers of his time but this one falls a bit short compared to his other works. It says a lot when one of his "bad" works can be described as "not as good" - I would never call it bad, just a let down after having read some of his others.
Jan 27, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I keep picking up ERB, because he's a great storyteller, and then I keep walking into the brick wall of his prejudices. And don't give me bullshit about "in those days." The crack about the KKK in this book was the last straw.

How much was his Venutian society influenced by the communist revolutions, I wonder, this having been written in the early 30s? It's not very subtle.
James Troxell
I love Edgar Rice Burroughs and the Barsoom books. The setting in this book is very creative. However, the protagonist and love interest lack the personality of the various characters from the Barsoom series. So I just couldn’t get as into it.
Tomas Buday
An easy introduction to the world of E.R.Burroughs' Venus, where a heroic earth man fights through adventure driven by love. While it's rather short, the setting changes far too often. What could have been a great story, seemed to have been far too rushed.
John Yelverton
Dec 31, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was good, and science fiction/adventure fans will enjoy. It's not Edgar Rice Burroughs greatest work though, and truth be told, it's not even on a par with his others works like Tarzan and Barsoom. For one who has become expectant on greatness, good just isn't good enough.
John B. Markley
Jan 15, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Always fun to read, but don't over think the plot

Edgar Rice Burroughs always writes a fun story, but don't expect too much. The plot movers very quickly, and the focus is on describing the world, not character development
Apr 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In this first of Edgar Rice Burroughs' Venus novels, the hero, Carson Napier, builds a rocket hoping to get to Mars, but due to a miscalculation (!) ends up on Venus. Underneath the clouds he discovers the world of Amtor, where the typical ERB adventures await him. And he meets the princess Duare.
Nov 26, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Always lovely to go back to the classics. With all the old fashioned morality, views and all that other stuff, you still can't take it away from a rollicking pulp sci fi opera!
Jul 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Mars series may be better known but E.R.B.'s ability to make up a world really shines in this.
Dec 06, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This one was the selection of the library book club ... and fell into the category of "taking one for the team".
« previous 1 3 4 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Edgar Rice Burrou...: Pirates of Venus 2 5 Aug 06, 2017 07:46AM  
What's the Name o...: Science fiction story set in Venus [s] 4 98 Oct 01, 2011 05:40PM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • Almuric
  • Dwellers in the Mirage
  • Edgar Rice Burroughs : Master of Adventure
  • The City of the Beast or Warriors of Mars (Michael Kane 1)
  • Transit to Scorpio (Dray Prescot, #1) (Delian Cycle, #1)
  • Doc Sidhe
  • Jandar Of Callisto
  • John Carter of Mars: Warlord of Mars Omnibus
  • Star Born (Pax/Astra, #2)
  • The Blue Star
  • Seas of Venus (Seas of Venus, #1-2)
  • Lucky Starr and the Oceans of Venus (Lucky Starr, #3)
  • The Return of Nathan Brazil (Saga of the Well World, #4)
  • Starwolf
  • Saucer Country Vol. 1: Run
See similar books…
Edgar Rice Burroughs was an American author, best known for his creation of the jungle hero Tarzan and the heroic John Carter, although he produced works in many genres.

Other books in the series

Venus (5 books)
  • Lost on Venus (Venus, #2)
  • Carson of Venus (Venus, #3)
  • Escape on Venus (Venus, #4)
  • The Wizard of Venus (Venus, #5)
“I had aimed at Mars and was about to hit Venus; unquestionably the all-time cosmic record for poor shots.” 2 likes
More quotes…