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Thread: Allan Quatermain

  1. #1
    Watcher by Night mtpspur's Avatar
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    Allan Quatermain

    Any Allan Quatermain fans out there? I started reading the books as a pre-teen based on a remark that Edgar Rice Burroughs admired them (the Ballantine reprints) and took over 30 years tracking them down in a casual manner. Am currently replacing my hardcovers with paperback reprints from Wildside Press (who have done an excellent job of creating a set that does NOT match up binding wise--heights and width varies). I suffer from Felix Unger/Adrian Monk complex--don't get me started on trying to get a matched set of Bernard Cornwell's Sharpe books in paperback.

    For the record I'm not a great fan of the movies and did not like Alan Moore's comics interpretation in League of Extraordinary Gentlemen.

    Favorites are a tie between She and Allan and The Ivory Child depends on which day of the week.

    Would love to see a great comics adaptation or good TV/movie series attemting to do the books justice.

  2. #2
    If grace is an ocean... grace86's Avatar
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    I was recently made aware of the fact that we (LitNet) should participate more in posting about our favorite authors...so I decided to take a little tour of Haggard's.

    Mtpspur, you poor thing, you started this thread over a month ago!!

    Well I am a big fan of Haggard's. I usually read only one book per author (so I can read more authors for a while) but I had to go out and buy King Soloman's Mines after reading She.

    I laughed at the introduction note to Soloman's Mines because it was saying something along the lines of it being an adventure story for men and boys. Well, I am obviously a female...and a young one at that. But no offense was taken since times were different when he wrote.

    I absolutely loved Ayesha in She. I thought a love story that spanned a couple thousand years entwined with all the malaria, tribal dancing was awesome. I am still trying to figure out what Ayesha stood for when trying to analyze the story though. She shows up again in another story of his, am I right?

    In King Soloman's Mines, I kept hoping something awful would happen to Gagool, she was so mean and nasty.

    Well, don't want to get too carried away...hope someone replies soon.

    By the way, which order do the Allan Quatermain books go in? Can anyone tell me Allan's chronological order?
    "So heaven meets earth like a sloppy wet kiss, and my heart turns violently inside of my chest, I don't have time to maintain these regrets, when I think about, the way....He loves us..."


    http://youtube.com/watch?v=5xXowT4eJjY

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    Watcher by Night mtpspur's Avatar
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    A reply at last -- you made my evening. Below is a list of the chronolical order to read both Alland Quatermain and She. The AQ list is borrowed from Douglas Menville's intro to Allan's Wife.

    SHE--4 novels
    1. Wisdom's Daughter--1923
    2. She and Allan--1921
    3. She--1886
    4. Ayesha: The Return of She--1905

    ALLAN QUATERMAIN--14 novels//4 short stories
    1. Marie--1912
    2. Child of Storm--1913
    3. Allan's Wife--1889
    4. A Tale of Three Lions (ss)--1887
    5. Maiwa's Revenge--1888
    6. Hunter Quatermain's Story (ss)--1885
    7. Long Odds (ss)--1886
    8. Allan and the Holy Flower--1915
    9. Heu-Heu or The Monster--1924
    10. She and Allan--1921
    11. The Treasure of the Lake--1926
    12. The Ivory Child--1916
    13. Finished--1917
    14. Magepa the Buck (ss)--1912
    15. King Solomon's Mines--1885 (AQ's debut)
    16. The Ancient Allan--1920
    17. Allan and the Ice Gods--1927
    18. Allan Quatermain--1887

    It was fun for me to read them in the written order to see Haggard weave events in AQ and fill in gaps in his history and foreshadow his end.

    Strongly recommend Nada the Lily (1892) as an unofficial AQ book chronologically during Marie as it gives the back story to Unslopogaas who figures in VERY powerfully in AQ and She and Allan.

    Again thank you for noticing my post and enjoy the reads.
    Last edited by mtpspur; 07-09-2006 at 04:04 AM. Reason: spelling

  4. #4
    If grace is an ocean... grace86's Avatar
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    Thankyou very much for all your help.

    I will be pursuing Haggard's work much quicker now and with a better understanding.
    "So heaven meets earth like a sloppy wet kiss, and my heart turns violently inside of my chest, I don't have time to maintain these regrets, when I think about, the way....He loves us..."


    http://youtube.com/watch?v=5xXowT4eJjY

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    Our wee Olympic swimmer Janine's Avatar
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    Haggard's work is extraordinary! His writing style is stunning. I read "She" first and probably, to this day, love it the best. Although I had the book for sometime, no doubt, collecting dust on a shelf, one day a friend pulled it off my shelf and told me how amazing it was. The novel was part of a set belonging to my father that I had inherited and I had taken this particular author for granted; what a mistake that was! An exceptionally perceptive and sensitive friend of mine suggested "She" to me, so I knew it had to be something quite unique. I was totally mesmerized with this novel. I later read "Alan Quatermain" and "King Solomon's Mines" set in Africa. I loved that book, too. It has been a long time since I read these three novels and I can only vaguely recall the plots, but the essense of each stays we me forever. Great reading does; I highly recommend Haggard; anything he wrote has to be worthwhile.

  6. #6
    If grace is an ocean... grace86's Avatar
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    Hi Janine, "She" was my first Haggard novel too. I absolutely love that one. I went on to read King Soloman's Mines - and only got to read part of Allan Quatermain...but the adventures just take you to an entirely different place...like you are the one on the adventure.

    I second you on highly recommending his work. I tried to get him on the book club list, but not too many people have voted for him...they don't know what they are missing.
    "So heaven meets earth like a sloppy wet kiss, and my heart turns violently inside of my chest, I don't have time to maintain these regrets, when I think about, the way....He loves us..."


    http://youtube.com/watch?v=5xXowT4eJjY

  7. #7
    Watcher by Night mtpspur's Avatar
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    I tend to take some things for granted when I talk about what books I've read. In regards to AQ the three books Marie, Child of Storm and Finished are a loose trilogy designed by Haggard as a (very) informal history of the rise and fall of the Zulu empire and are best appreciated at that level. To read them out of order is akin to my reading Lords of the Rings as I actually still in those long lost years: Fellowship, Hobbit, Return and Two Towers--was the way I go my hands on them and devoured them all 3 days each. Years later read them all to my children (though Sandy fell asleep a few times.)

  8. #8
    Our wee Olympic swimmer Janine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by grace86 View Post
    Hi Janine, "She" was my first Haggard novel too. I absolutely love that one. I went on to read King Soloman's Mines - and only got to read part of Allan Quatermain...but the adventures just take you to an entirely different place...like you are the one on the adventure.

    I second you on highly recommending his work. I tried to get him on the book club list, but not too many people have voted for him...they don't know what they are missing.
    Hi Grace, thanks for your comments. I loved "She" and it spurred me on to read more of his books. I still love "She" best. I am an artist and I did a drawing on canvas with colored backgrounds inspired by "King's Solomon's Mines"....but I call it "Africa". The book and the adventure totally captivated me and swept me away, as you said.... like one on the adventure....to an entirely different place. I struggled through "Quatermain", if I remember correctly, that is not to say I did not like it. To the contrary all of Haggard's works were wonderfully skillful and beautifully written.

    I need to ask mtpspur a question. If the books are a trilogy, could you tell me in what order they should be read? Interesting, since I did not know that before. Thanks for pointing that out.

  9. #9
    Moderator Logos's Avatar
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    The biography of Sir H.R. Haggard is quite fascinating. He was a widely read and popular author during his lifetime, but he's another of 'those' writers who now get accused of racism and bigotry though he was reflecting the then British colonial mindset in Africa where he served as secretary to Governor Bulwer (and would ultimately reject the Empire's policies)

    I've read a few of his works and love that many of his protagonists/heroes are African/Zulu, but I didn't realise that there was more than one Ayesha novel, his books are very hard to find in the second-hand shops
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    Our wee Olympic swimmer Janine's Avatar
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    Hi Logos, Good point about the racism and bigotry of the time, and the mindset of the British colonials in Africa. I just put his name into Amazon and they have a number of books available. The first one listed is of the three novels: "She", "King Solomon's Mines", and "Alan Quartermain", all unabridged.
    I think it is a paperback. There are also listed a few books I did not know of - one being "The People of the Mist".

    Are there more than one Ayesha novel? I read KSM and AQ and I don't recall her resurfacing, as a character or even being mentioned in text.
    The books I had not heard of sound interesting. Have you heard of the one I mentioned? I might like to read it.

  11. #11
    If grace is an ocean... grace86's Avatar
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    Janine - I think mtpspur listed them all in chronological order above.

    I also have not found too many of Haggard's books anywhere. Amazon is a pretty good place, I also looked at Alibris.com. This weekend I am going to see if this antiquarian dealer has some of his stuff.

    Thanks logos for the bio information. I first read of all his stuff here on Litnet-thanks.
    "So heaven meets earth like a sloppy wet kiss, and my heart turns violently inside of my chest, I don't have time to maintain these regrets, when I think about, the way....He loves us..."


    http://youtube.com/watch?v=5xXowT4eJjY

  12. #12
    Watcher by Night mtpspur's Avatar
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    To Janine per Grace 86 the listing of the Quatermains and She novels are indeed above. Marie, Child of Storm and Finished are a loose trilogy covering Quatermain's early years to probably late 40s. In King Solomon's Mines he claims to be 55--my current age. The trilogy covers the rise and fall of the Zulu empire from King Chaka to Cetewayo in a fictionized setting. If you think Gagool from King Solomon's Mines was creepy the witch doctor Zikali will send chills down your spine.

    Del Ray books published the 4 She novels in paperback in the latter part of 1978 and I still own them. Wisdom's Daughter is the hardest to find (the origin of Ayesha and how She arrived in Kor).

    Wildside Press has most of the AQ back in print in hardcover and paperback. I replaced my hardcovers (gave to oldest son) for the AQs and am keeping the Del Ray editions for uniformity on the bookcase---(a lesson I wished Wildside has learned). The short story Magepa the Buck appears in the book Smith and the Pharoahs and Other Tales. The other 3 AQ short stories are usually published under titles such as : Hunter Quatermain's Story or Tales of AQ.

    Hope this helps and I never dreamed after all these years anyone would read Haggard. Read him in context of the times and you'll be amazed how the racism/imperialism is restrained--Haggard definitely admired the Zulus.
    Last edited by mtpspur; 11-17-2006 at 04:29 AM. Reason: spelling/added a word

  13. #13
    Our wee Olympic swimmer Janine's Avatar
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    Thanks - grace, I just noticed the list; I had not read back that far before posting. Now I wonder if I read a condensed version of "She". Have to refer to my book I own...I hope it contained all four parts. It has been awhile since I read it. I hope it was complete. It was in a collection. Does anyone else think the title for H's book was highly creative? I always thought so - so simple and yet so alluring somehow....."She"

    mtpspur - great information. Thanks so much!

  14. #14
    Watcher by Night mtpspur's Avatar
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    To Janine and you're welcome. She tends to show in collection of 3-4 books of Haggard--usually King Solomon's Mines, She, Allan Quaterman amd Cleopatra.

    The dates I put in the list is when they were published but placed in chronoloical readng order. Happy Hunting/reading.

    One more time Janine People of the Mist was also published by DelRay in paperback but I will confess I've never read it. Other then Quaterman/She the only other Haggard I've read was Eric Brighteyes (his Viking novel) and skimmed Caetewayo and His White Neighbors on the net awhile back--that book was meant to be a history book and not a novelization and is a unique view in British politics back 120 years or so ago.

    Like Columbo just one more thing. I now own the enire AQ/She series but before that happened I was able to obtain Heu-Heu and The Treasure of the Lake to read thru the Huber Heights OH inter-library loan program--which also helped in my tracking down Rafael Sabatini. Only drawback was I had to RETURN THEM. Of the 14 AQ the 2 noted above (Heu-Heu especially) are the hardest ones to find. (Until Wildside started their reprint series and they arent terribly expensive. This literary took me well over 30 years of CASUAL searching. (Example: When I decided and had the money I tracked down all 20 Bomba the Jungle Boy books within 6 months.)

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    rat in a strange garret Whifflingpin's Avatar
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    "took me well over 30 years of CASUAL searching. "

    My brother has just completed his quest to own all of the Rider-Haggard novels (around 70 works, but he has most of them in more than one edition.) Like you, he has been quietly acquiring them for decades. His copy of Heu-Heu is one that I had as a boy, about 45 years ago.

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    Sound of the wind and sound of the sea,
    Are calling and whispering in my ear,
    Whifflingpin! Why stayest thou here?

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