Review: A Princess of Mars

A Princess of Mars
A Princess of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I came to Edgar Rice Burroughs rather late, especially considering I was an avid fan of the old Tarzan TV show in the 1970s and the older films, regardless of who played the ape man. So it was about five years ago I finally read the first couple of Tarzan novels. They’re fun, but don’t stand up well to logic.

It took a boring afternoon and a decision to visit the dollar movie theater to see John Carter to bring me around to reading A Princess of Mars. I enjoyed the film much more than I expected to, so I downloaded the novel and read it on my old Sony e-reader. I have to say I preferred the film.

In the novel, John Carter is the recipient of way too many coincidences, strokes of good fortune, and dumb luck. How many times did he jump into a situation only to explain that earlier something happened to enable him to succeed, but the reader wasn’t told about it then? Too freakin’ many.

That said, if you take the novel for what it is, a piece of early science fiction pulp meant to entertain with thrilling action scenes, it’s pretty good. I’ve downloaded several other novels in the John Carter series and plan to read them … eventually.

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