Happy Birthday, by Crom!

« Whatever got Juan is coming for me, too! »

It’s birthday number one hundred and twelve for pulp wordsmith Robert Ervin Howard (January 22, 1906 – June 11, 1936) who, in his tragically short lifespan, yet found time to unleash upon the world Conan the Barbarian, Solomon Kane, Kull of Atlantis and, more significantly for this reader, the chilling classic Pigeons From Hell, a short story posthumously published in Weird Tales’ May, 1938 issue.

ChillsBrunner

Howard’s The Horror From the Mound, originally published in the May, 1932 issue of Weird Tales Magazine, presumably had its title sanitized here because the H-word was still verboten in the early 1970s. Hailing from the second issue of Marvel’s Chamber of Chills (January, 1973), it was reprinted in glorious black and white in 1975’s Masters of Terror no. 1 (original title restored, hurrah!)

MastersTerror1A
And here it be. Seems a bit inaccurate to refer to a group of mostly pulp writers (some long dead) from the 30s to 50s as “Modern-Day Masters of Terror”, but I suppose it depends on one’s definition of “Modern-Day”. Cover illustration by Gray Morrow from a drawing by noted fabulist, fervent Trump supporter and fellow Hair Club for Men habitué Jim Steranko.

Gardner Fox and Brunner give it their all, but the story could have used more pages to truly do justice to Howard’s moody proto-weird western.

Read the full adaptation here:
http://thehorrorsofitall.blogspot.ca/2009/02/monster-from-mound.html

Better yet, read Howard’s tale:
http://gutenberg.net.au/ebooks06/0601761h.html

And Pigeons From Hell, while you’re at it:
http://gutenberg.net.au/ebooks06/0600721h.html

-RG

2 thoughts on “Happy Birthday, by Crom!

  1. Barney Dannelke January 22, 2018 / 19:47

    And look! Brunner used the giant Mexican sombrero – latter immortalized by Vincent D’onofrio in the Robert E. Howard bio-pic, THE WHOLE WIDE WORLD.

    Like

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