Contents of Del Rey’s El Borak and Other Desert Adventures Announced Essay

Recently editor Rusty Burke announced the line-up for the “Desert Adventures” book that collects all of Howard’s professional series desert adventures:

Francis X. Gordon (“El Borak”): 

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“Swords of the Hills” (REH’s title for the story later published as “The Lost Valley of Iskander”)
“The Daughter of Erlik Khan”
“Blood of the Gods”
“Sons of the Hawk” (REH’s title for the story later published as “The Country of the Knife”)
“Son of the White Wolf”
“Hawk of the Hills”
“Three-Bladed Doom” –  both versions: “long” and “short” (The short version has never before appeared as REH wrote it.

It originally appeared in REH: Lone Star Fictioneer, but was rewritten (for no apparent reason, and without notice) by Byron Roark (see my article REH: Two Gun Raconteur #10, or a shorter, online version here. I published the REH portions that had been rewritten by Roark, but not the whole story, so this will be the first appearance of the story in its entirety as written by REH (the “long” version was written first, and about a year later REH rewrote it as the “short” version).

Kirby O’Donnell:

“Gold from Tartary” (published as “The Treasures of Tartary”)
“Swords of Shahrazar”
“The Trail of the Blood Stained God”

Steve Clarney:

“The Fire of Asshurbanipal” (straight adventure version)

Michael William Kaluta’s original illustrations from the FAX editions of  The Lost Valley of Iskander and  Swords of Shahrazar were originally announced to be included in this volume, possibly along with new illustrations by Kaluta. However, Kaluta has since announced that no deal has been reached with Del Rey, so the artist for this title is presently unknown.

Howard also wrote numerous El Borak stories and fragments when he was very young. These will be collected in a companion volume to be published by The Robert E. Howard Foundation.

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