This afternoon I learned of the death of Charles R. Saunders, the amazing sword-and-sorcery author who helped open up the fantasy adventure genre to Black heroes thanks to his series of stories about his characters Imaro and Dossouye. Saunders was 74 years old, and that’s still too young for such a tremendous talent. Like Black Panther’s Chadwick Boseman, another tragic death that hit us this week, Saunders was a vital figure in the creation of the modern Black superhero. (Edit: It appears Saunders died in May, but it only became public now.)Continue reading “Remembering Charles R. Saunders—Imaro: The Trail of Bohu”
Edgar Rice Burroughs opened up the world of the pulps in the ‘teens, and the field of fantasy and science fiction (the latter of which didn’t even have that name yet) attracted new voices. One of the most successful to follow Burroughs was A. (Abraham) Merritt, a magazine editor and part-time speculative fiction author. Merritt specialized in the Lost Civilization tale. He lavished an imaginative perspective onto this sub-genre unlike anything seen previously. In novels like The Moon Pool (1919), The Metal Monster (1920), and Dwellers in the Mirage (1932) he created science-fantasy vistas as astonishing as they were verbose. And “coruscating” and “scintillating,” two words Merritt passionately loved.
Update: The original Perilous Worlds website no longer exists. I am going to repost these articles on the blog and will link to them from here as they go live. Currently, the Leigh Brackett article is on Goodman Games.
My first three articles for Perilous Worlds, the new publishing imprint and website, are now live. Presenting, for your enjoyment:
- “Inside a Song” A Plea the Read The Silmarillion – The Silmarillion is the third stool leg of the J. R. R. Tolkien’s classics—but many people are still afraid to give it a shot. Here’s why The Silmarillion is worth your time.
- The Hour of the Dragon Welcomes You to the Hyborian Age –Interested in reading the Conan stories by their original author, Robert E. Howard? Start with Howard’s only Conan novel, The Hour of the Dragon.
- Leigh Brackett: Planetary Romantic – Leigh Brackett broke ground as a woman in male-dominated field of 1940s science-fiction. She also pioneered a type of space adventure that still dominates pop culture.