In One Word

In One Word, The People of the Black Circle by Robert E Howard…

  • Published in 1934 in Weird Tales
  • Format: Classic Tales Podcast
  • Narrator: B J Harrison
  • Listening time: 4 weeks (4 weekly one-hour instalments)

Dated

  • Dealt another neglected classic that’s accompanied by another content warning. If I wasn’t getting this for free, I might have given it a miss.
  • Aggravated by Conan. He’s just a thug who uses violence and violent thoughts to force his way through everything and he treats everyone around him, especially his friends, like dirt, flinging out injury and death threats like confetti. He really shouldn’t have survived as long as he did or be as respected as he is.
  • The misogyny in this book is appalling. Yasmina should have been a strong character as a ruler but she’s just a standard damsel in distress. Worse than a damsel in distress. She becomes a reward for, well, a barbarian. This is pretty much the worst example of a male fantasy.
  • Extremely uncomfortable villains. There’s some very racist undertones and, while their powers are genuinely terrifying, I can’t help but notice how the villains seem to wear turbans or wear silk robes. I should have expected it from 1930s book but it’s still uncomfortable.
  • Damn, that was a waste of time. At least, it was short. I can’t say I took much of it at all as the negative parts were much too distracting.

Goodreads Rating: ⭐️

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