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Queen of the Black Coast

really liked it 4.00  ·  Rating details ·  625 ratings  ·  62 reviews
In Queen of the Black Coast, Conan joins with Belit, the magnificent pirate queen, whose fathers were the kings of Askalon! There is a frightening conflict with a monster winged ape before the sorrowful passing of the Queen of the Black Coast. She who belonged to the sea; to its everlasting mystery he returned her.Queen of the Black Coast also contains a second Conan story ...more
Hardcover, 119 pages
Published December 1st 1978 by Donald M. Grant Publishers (first published 1934)
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really liked it Average rating 4.00  · 
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Bentley ★
Jan 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
Not my favorite of the Conan the Barbarian short stories I've now read, but excursions into the world that Robert E. Howard has created are always at the very least entertaining. Howard has a way with world building that is unparalleled, and wholly unexpected from a classic author of what is now considered pulp fantasy fiction.

In this story, he sets his readers off on a sea-faring expedition with Conan and takes us on a journey to places along the Black Coast that no one fully expects to go.
Oct 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Conan the Barbarian seeks to battle the Queen of the Black Coast named Bayleet. Will he be victorious in his conquest? Read on and find out for yourself.

I enjoyed the Dark Horse Comics Motion Comic of this short story on YouTube via Geek and Sundry's official YouTube channel with Vic Mignogna as Conan. If you like comics, definitely check this out for yourself online here at this link:
Michael Sorbello
Sep 17, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Conan joins the pirate crew of Bêlit, Queen of the Black Coast, until the exploration of an ancient city and an encounter with the primordial creature that dwells within wreck havoc on the crew. Fun, exciting and the prose is candy for the eyes. It's everything I look for in a Conan story and it's a nice follow-up to Iron Shadows in the Moon which ended abruptly. My only complaint this time around is that the villain/monster felt underwhelming and had no time to develop compared to many other ...more
Oct 14, 2019 rated it liked it
3.5 stars. Great fun exploring a forgotten dead city, looting said city, and battling the ancient evils and beasts that protect it. Oh yeah, and pirates, plus some very sappy Conan style romance.
Cedric Nye
Ah, man!! I am not going to be a spoiler, I think that is shitty. What I will say is that this story brings tears to my eyes every time. The love between Conan and Belit is better than any love story I have ever read.

Ahhhhhh! How can I tell you about Conan and Belit without spoiling the story? Belit is a hard-core plunderer, and she owns a ship. Her and her crew loot and plunder the coast until fate causes her to attack the ship that Conan has hitched a ride on.

A bloody battle ensues, and the
Feb 01, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Fans of Fantasy
Queen of the Black Coast is one of Robert E. Howard's best Conan stories. It is very short, being only 32 pages, but Howard's epic prose makes it worth it.

Those who are unfamiliar with Conan stories should read this one first. It introduces a great character in the Queen, Belit, and offers much insight into Conan's personalities and the ways of Hyboria's people.

Favorite quote from Conan (that describes him in a nutshell): "I live, I burn with life, I love, I slay, and am content."
May 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I've read this story a few times already over the past few years. I just keeps getting better. I really wish Howard had dedicated another decade or so to writing. The original Conan series of 20 so stories and novels is masterful work I enjoy coming back to again and again. Sword and sorcery at its very best.
Mark Tallen
I enjoy dipping into the Robert E. Howard, Conan stories when I'm in between reading novels. Queen Of The Black Coast isn't bad, but it's not up there with my favourites. 2.5 stars.
Matthew Hunter
Jun 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing
“I have known many gods. He who denies them is as blind as he who trusts them too deeply. I seek not beyond death. It may be the blackness averred by the Nemedian skeptics, or Crom's realm of ice and cloud, or the snowy plains and vaulted halls of the Nordheimer's Valhalla. I know not, nor do I care. Let me live deep while I live; let me know the rich juices of red meat and stinging wine on my palate, the hot embrace of white arms, the mad exultation of battle when the blue blades flame and ...more
Seth Skorkowsky
Jan 22, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio
Fun tale of how Conan became a pirate, found his true love, discovered a lost city and fantastic wealth, and then tragedy strikes.

Not my favorite of the old R.H. Howard classics, but the way Conan becomes a sailor was wonderful. Howard is much more poetic in this story than the others, and he shows a side of his battle-hardened barbarian that we never get to see. Being raised on the 1982 Conan movie, I've enjoyed seeing the little tidbits that were pulled from the classic tales. Here we see the
Alison Menotti
Jun 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
My favorite Robert E Howard story so far!! A short tale that I just can't stop thinking about.
Mar 02, 2014 rated it really liked it


Chapter 1
Conan Joins the Pirates
Believe green buds awaken in the spring,
That autumn paints the leaves with somber fire;
Believe I held my heart inviolate
To lavish on one man my hot desire.

The Song of Belit

Hoofs drummed down the street that sloped to the wharfs. The folk that yelled and scattered had only a fleeting glimpse of a mailed figure on a black stallion, a wide scarlet cloak flowing out on the wind. Far up the street came the shout and clatter of pursuit, but the horseman did

Perry Whitford
Arrested in Argos for refusing to betray a friend, Conan the barbarian faces the law of civilized society, lectured by a judge '"about my duty to the state, and society, and other things I did not understand"'. The result? Conan makes his own sense of things, and 'seeing they were all mad, I drew my sword and cleft the judge's skull'.
On the run he takes to the seas aboard a trading vessel, but when they are attacked and routed by the crew of a much feared ship The Temptress, he willingly becomes
W.E. Linde
Dec 08, 2012 rated it liked it
This short story/novella falls about in the middle of the series of Conan adventures published by Robert E. Howard from 1932 - 1934. Based on my extensive research (meaning after a couple of Wikipedia searches), I learned that Howard was looking for an "epic" tone to this particular story, and apparently The Queen of the Black Coast is a favorite among Howard's fans. I was surprised to see certain key elements, including a few snippets of dialogue, were borrowed from this story and included in ...more
Matthew Antosh
Dec 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantsay
This is my first Robert E. Howard/Conan story I've read. It's also the first full epub novel I've completed. I think it's perfect for the format - it's not terribly long and it has a good pace so that you can read it on your phone while waiting for stuff like the bus.

This is an action packed romp with a whole lot of heart in between the slaying. It's very pulpy - I kind of chuckled when Belits response to Conan slaughtering a bunch of her men was pretty much "hey, boy, whactca doin'? DTF?"

Martin Mcgoey
Apr 25, 2013 rated it really liked it
Robert E. Howard and Hemingway would not get along.

This was my first Conan read and I thoroughly enjoyed every gratuitous action scene and overly descriptive detail. Essentially, Howard's style in this novelette is what I'd call adjective porn. You can see glimpses of George R.R. Martin in the story, who cites Howard as an influence, but Howard takes it a step further and adds descriptors to nearly every word. I could see how some would find this infuriating. I'd hate to be in a writing
Vincent Darlage
Dec 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Reading the lavishly illustrated Donald Grant edition of Queen of the Black Coast (and Vale of Lost Women) at the same time as I am reading Swords of the North, I am struck by the same basic theme - that of an overriding doom that man can only strive against temporarily. "'There is no hope here or hereafter in the cult of my people,' answered Conan. 'In this world men struggle and suffer vainly...'"

It is a gloomy philosophy, this "thing of the North," as Rusty Burke put it in the introduction to
T. Stuart
Feb 12, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy
Howard's prose is not my preferred style but I knew that getting into this story and was pleasantly surprised as I read through it. The first chapter almost lost me with a patently silly seduction scene but by the time that the plot properly kicked in, Howard begins to indulge in his Weirder interests and the tale really catches fire. Further, despite the constant bulging sinew and thewy, steely, steel-hard thews, there is a grounded, visceral quality to Howard's descriptions of action that I ...more
Richard Eyres
This is my first foray into Conan. It was an audio version that was freely given via the SffAudio podcast.
I know a little about Conan, having watched most of the movies and read some of the comics etc, but never have I read anything in written form.
The story appears to be a typical Conan story - gets attacked, joins band, does a little robbing, a little shagging and ends up by himself again (either people have died or have gone in a different direction).
The Audio was ok, the narrator was a
May 03, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: audio
*** Listened to a LibriVox Recording ***

Somehow I never read any Conan before, but took a flyer and gave it a listen. Wow. First off I was not prepared for the vocabulary. Also, the "barbarian" in "Conan the barbarian" was pretty obviously said with irony (I think it's irony.) Conan was a barbarian only to those who didn't understand his culture, just as cultures in the east and west considered each other barbarians.

Anyway, it packed a lot of drama and suspense, some horror, some fantasy, and
Carl Timms
A testament to Howard's terrific writing here that a 140 page story can feel like I've read a novel or series of novels. Cutting out any fat, this is a story that gets straight to the point, building up the love of Conan's life with surprisingly little effort and wrenching the hearts strings by story's end. The action is possibly some of Howard's finest, starting with a bloody sea battle and ending in the monster filled wastes of a forgotten city. It's like a summary of everything he wrote well: ...more
Seth Kenlon
Jan 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: sf
An amazing Conan tale. Conan, pirates, and best of all - Bêlit, the captain of a fierce pirate crew that follows her every whim without question. She's strong, relentless, bloodthirsty, pensive, and greedy. What a dynamic, fierce character. The conversation about the gods that she and Conan have is probably one of the most thought-provoking discussions in the entire original series.

If you're interested in Conan at all, this is a must-read (um, as all Robert E Howard's Conan stories are - but if
Jan 08, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
More swords and epic battles(plus heaving bosoms and biceps) involving the mighty Conan,Only the second such tale I have read but just as enjoyable a romp with as large a body count as the last book I read...there seems little point in dwelling on the characterisation in the Conan bit's I have read so far as it's unlikely anyone will be left standing(bar Conan) at the end.
An enjoyable and epic romp which is extremely comic book but the likes of which I haven't really read enough of!!
Mark Westmoreland
Jan 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Why do you read a Conan story?

For the action, the blood, and the sexy women.

"Queen of the Black Coast" is chock full of all three.

In fact, I believe the action scenes within in this story is Robert E. Howard at his finest.

Belît is a terrifyingly beautiful heroine. I'm not sure if I'd want to cross her in a dark alley, but I wouldn't mind making our with her.

If you read any Conan story make sure "Queen of the Black Coast" is at the top of your list.
Lance Lasalle
Dec 13, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
This is definitely a step above your typical Conan story; some philosophical murmurings about the god, a big-breasted babe who is actually bad-ass and who Conan actually loves; some excellent, really excellent world-building ancient history...The pulp is thick but it's nourishing and a fountain of inspiration.
Ray Smith
Oct 06, 2016 rated it really liked it
Entertaining as always. This story, like all of Conan stories, is like a proto-videogame. Conan fights a few minor henchmen and at the end he fights The Boss, which is another evil wizard (cuz no regular man is physically a match for Conan!). Purple but well-written prose abound. He even briefly finds love, though it's another female pirate, like Valeria in Red Nails.
Jan 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Probably one of my favourite Conan stories so far! I read this one in a collection of fantasy short stories which included a couple Conan stories from Robert Howard and by far this is the best one out of the bunch. The ending really got me pumped up and wanting Conan to do what he does best; crushing his enemies!
Brian Surratt
Apr 07, 2013 rated it liked it
Fun story. Seems more like a weird fiction story than real sword ans sorcery.

Mainly because more time is spent on describing the environment and the sense of foreboding evil in the area. All of which is well written and effective.

But when Conan cuts every bad guy in half with one swing of his mighty sword, it makes for a disappointing, unsatisfying conclusion of the story's conflict.
Jul 23, 2013 rated it really liked it
A must-read for any Conan fan. The Cimmerian takes his fury to the high seas with a dark haired beauty who matches his lust for adventure and sex. And as always we get some abomination that tries to rip their world apart. (I was also totally intrigued by the cool imagery on the cover).
Sep 14, 2011 rated it it was amazing
To be honest I really didn't think I would enjoy a Conan book so much! This was my first attempt at one and I have to say that I loved this! The visualization was fantastic and timeless. Wonderful and when I get some free time I want to read more.
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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
“I have known many gods. He who denies them is as blind as he who trusts them too deeply. I seek not beyond death. It may be the blackness averred by the Nemedian skeptics, or Crom's realm of ice and cloud, or the snowy plains and vaulted halls of the Nordheimer's Valhalla. I know not, nor do I care. Let me live deep while I live; let me know the rich juices of red meat and stinging wine on my palate, the hot embrace of white arms, the mad exultation of battle when the blue blades flame and crimson, and I am content. Let teachers and philosophers brood over questions of reality and illusion. I know this: if life is illusion, then I am no less an illusion, and being thus, the illusion is real to me. I live, I burn with life, I love, I slay, and am content.” 170 likes
“I know this: if life is illusion, then I am no less an illusion, and being thus, the illusion is real to me. I live, I burn with life, I love, I slay, and am content.” 5 likes
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