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At the Earth's Core Paperback – December 7, 2016
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Although Burroughs was not the first to contemplate such an inner world, there are none who have perhaps created it so magnificently. In “At the Earth’s Core,” David Innes and Perry Abner travel in a mighty metal prospector into the earth’s crust and break through into a world they never imagined with an eternal noon-day sun hanging in the heavens. Alongside the dinosaurs and cave people, one of the most interesting ideas explored by Burroughs in these books is the idea that time is man’s creation and, without the sun rising and setting, one loses track of time. Thus, one could go off and have incredible adventures and think weeks or even months have gone by while another who sits reading a book could think not much time has elapsed. It is an incredible idea because, without our guideposts of the sunrise and sunset and without clocks and technology, how do we really know how much time has gone by.
On the surface, some might compare the world of Pellucidar to Burroughs’ worlds of Barsoom and Venus (although he wrote the Venus series decades later). After all, Innes, like John Carter, is nearly alone (except for Perry) in a savage world where he first offends, then romances a savage princess. And, like Carter, who overthrows the existing order in “The Gods of Mars,” Innes takes on the dreaded Mahars. However, here, the concepts are quite different. The reptiles are the smarter, more advanced species and they are not a human-like reptile species. Moreover, this is a more dangerous, savage world, peopled by primitive tribes and filled with dinosaurs and all manner of strange beasts that have developed quite differently from the evolution of the outer world.
Burroughs’ writing in this novel is absolutely terrific and his descriptions of the prospector and the journey into the center of the earth, absolutely fascinating. This was written over one hundred years ago and is still one of the greatest adventure stories ever written. Five stars!
This work `At the Earth's Core' was the first of the series. It was first published in 1914 where it appeared in four installments of the pulp magazine, `All-Story Weekly.' It has been available, and indeed been in print in one form or another for almost all this time. There is a reason for this. It is good stuff that for some reason never goes old and is rediscovered by each generation.
Our primary hero in his book and this series is David Innes. He, along with a long time family employee who has happened to have invented and built a gigantic steel "mole" which is a machine meant to mine deep under ground, are test driving this machine when things go very, very wrong. They go so wrong that they two end up about 500 miles below the surface of the earth where they discover that the earth is actually hollow. You have to read the book to find out how this is possible, but the reader should remember that this work was a created work of fiction written in 1914 and the reader, like with most SiFi of that day and time, must put their credulity on hold and just enjoy the story.
Anyway, this earth within the earth is inhabited by just about ever prehistoric creature you can imagine and it is also in habited my people, people who are almost people, lizards who are people and so on. It you think John Carter of Mars and Tarzan of the Apes you get some idea of what is going on. We have every kind of hostile critter from dinosaurs to saber-toothed tigers and mastodons and mammoths. We also, of course, are given some very attractive cave girls for our hero David to deal with...one in particular in this particular work.
Like many of these old stories the action is fast, fast and fast once it gets started. The theme of rescuing the "damsel in distress" is worked over and over again and actually never gets old. Readers should note that by our standards of today there is quite a bit of sexism involved in these book and there is most certainly some very racist attitudes involved. Again, it must be remember when these books were written.
The Kindle format on this one is quite good and no problems were encountered.
As an aside, if there is anyone interested, and I cannot imagine anyone who would not be, you can do a publication history search on these books and find some wonderful illustrations which have graced the covers of these books down through the years. Frazetta is of course my favorite...hmmmm, wonder why?
It should be noted that most of the SiFi we have available today has its roots buried in these books and other works by the old pulp writers of that era. Any study of the genre must start here.
Other books in this series include:
Tanar Of Pellucidar
TARZAN AT THE EARTH'S CORE
Back To The Stone Age
Most recent customer reviews
Ok what else can I say how bad this book was