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Robert E. Howard's Conan the Cimmerian Barbarian  By  cover art

Robert E. Howard's Conan the Cimmerian Barbarian

By: Robert E. Howard,Finn J. D. John
Narrated by: Finn J. D. John
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Publisher's Summary

This collection contains all of Robert E. Howard's Conan the Cimmerian stories published during his lifetime, contextualized with biographical details of their author.

A full e-book copy of this book in Interactive PDF format is included and can be downloaded by clicking the "PDF" link in your Audible library (it's in the "Title" column). This PDF includes the audiobook chapter numbers, to make navigation easier.

Excerpt from the introduction:

"When the first Conan of Cimmeria story appeared in the pages of Weird Tales magazine in December 1932, nothing quite like it had ever before appeared in print. Author Robert E. Howard had been writing stories broadly similar to it for half a decade; but it was with Conan, and the Hyborian Age storyworld in which he was placed, that Howard finally fully doped out the sub-genre that would become known as "sword and sorcery", of which Howard is today considered the founding father.

"Conan's origins date back to an experiment in 1926 titled "The Shadow Kingdom", featuring the character Kull, exile of Atlantis. The idea - Howard's great innovation - was, at its core, historical fiction set in a pre-historical period. That pre-historical period - being, of course, lost in the mists of time - could contain anything Howard might like to include: evil races of sentient snake-things, sorcerers, undead creatures, demons walking upon the earth, anything.

"In other words, Howard was creating a secular mythology."

©2017 Finn J.D. John (P)2017 Pulp-Lit Productions

What listeners say about Robert E. Howard's Conan the Cimmerian Barbarian

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Great Reading!

What did you love best about Robert E. Howard's Conan the Cimmerian Barbarian?

Evocative reading and great stories. Excellent introduction to Sword and Sorcery as well as Pulp Classics.

What does Finn J. D. John bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Finn J.D. John pours his heart into the Conan mythos.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Listening to 35 hours of Conan would be enjoyable but even a Barbarian needs sleep.

47 people found this helpful

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D&D Fans! You'll love these stories!

If you could sum up Robert E. Howard's Conan the Cimmerian Barbarian in three words, what would they be?

Pulp, Fun, Surprising

What other book might you compare Robert E. Howard's Conan the Cimmerian Barbarian to and why?

Howard was accused of "stealing" ideas from Lovecraft and simply placing them in a fantasy setting. I did not get that impression at all. The two are quite different - with the notable exception of Howard's frequent use of demonic, "Lovercraftian" monsters that were obviously drawn from those Cthulhu sources. Howard reads more like the works of Fritz Leiber or R. A. Salvatore. Enjoyable and easy-to-read; sometime humorous; with simple, sometimes obvious "twists".

Which scene was your favorite?

This is a collection of mostly short stories. I think "The People of the Black Circle" was most engaging, but really no story was a disappointment.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

I wouldn't say I was moved - the book isn't that deep. But prior to each chapter the narrator provides information about the story. It's publication history, what was going on in Howard's life at the time, and historical critical reception. These prefaces provide a great setup for the story and add a lot as you listen.

Any additional comments?

If, like me, you're a fan of Dungeon's & Dragons, I think you'll find another level of enjoyment here. Gary Gygax said in interviews that these stories were a source of inspiration and often direct input for content in the original version of D&D. If you know that game well, it is easy and satisfying to spot those influences. They also offer great ideas for encounters and stories in your own D&D games.

20 people found this helpful

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Howard's work deserves a better reader

Mr. John's Conan is to audio what Arnold's was to the movie. The voice just is not IMHO right. Howard's Conan is perfect pulp fiction. It needed a better performer. It wasn't awful but it could have been better.

19 people found this helpful

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It's fuckin Conan!

Although a collection of seemingly disjointed stories you still get a vivid picture of the epic character that is Conan. I believe Conan to be the greatest of the anti-heros.

18 people found this helpful

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a great according of Robert Howard's works.

thank you Mr. Finn cometary and narration are appreciated. Sad that Mr Howard isn't here to hear it.

17 people found this helpful

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Conan

Greatest collection of fantasy stories ever written by the creator of Sword and Sorcery Robert E Howard

11 people found this helpful

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Great but orator was a poor choice

The speaker is not engaging due to his high and nasal pitch. A booming voice similar to James Earl Jones or Morgan Freeman is needed to capture the essence of the narrator.

9 people found this helpful

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New Reader Needed

The Conan series is an enjoyable read. However, the reader of this audible book distracts the listener with poorly imitated Arnold Schwarzenegger, the women were high pitched and whiny, and the pace was inconsistent. I believe that if there was an other reader (Ray Porter) the listening experience would be very enjoyable.

7 people found this helpful

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Formulaic but good enough to at least listen.

Finn J. D. Jhon's Narration was decent enough, if not sometimes a tiny bit hard for me to follow. The stories were quite hit or miss, but Finn's parts explaining E. Howard's life situation when the stories were written made me put them into context as regards to the authors Life. I'd recommend the audiobook still, perhaps not as a first purchase as I enjoyed E. Howard's writing style even if the stories, as explained by Finn in the biography parts were extremely formulaic.

6 people found this helpful

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pillar of fantasy

this is where the roots of fantasy are watered. An epic group of tales that helped make fantasy what it is today.

6 people found this helpful

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  • SteveF
  • 02-11-18

The worst narrator I have ever heard

What an odd narrator. Bizarre intonation. Sounds sarcastic or bored . Ruined this book for me

17 people found this helpful

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  • AndyJ
  • 05-28-18

Not the best narrator

There is a version done by Todd Mclaren which is excellent. I had to have this as i am a very big Conan fan.

13 people found this helpful

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  • Dez V
  • 02-18-18

Great adventure storytelling, brilliant prose

Enjoyed this tremendously. Although familiar with the character of Conan, I was pleasantly surprised at how good the prose is. Very mature writing for such a young author, moody gothic atmosphere at times, evocative, fluent and efficient storytelling.
The narration is great too (except the female voice imitations perhaps), nice rhythm and timbre, a relatively neutral accent, and love the subtle Schwarzenegger influence on Conan's voice.
Howard displays astute knowledge in the themes of power, politics, the coming and going of civilisations and tribes. At times the ethnocentric worldview shines through in his depiction of "dark" races, but overall it is about tribes in constant conflict with each other. Conan himself as a Barbarian versus the civilised pampered urban people is an embodiment of the "noble savage" and it is unfortunate that Howard's life ended so prematurely, because one can sense that his writing would have matured even further.

All in all an inspiring journey through epic imagination, of the days of sorcery and high adventure.

10 people found this helpful

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  • Richard McGarrigle
  • 11-06-19

good story but lacks good navigation in audible.

Very Enjoyable.

No chapter descriptions on the app, so hard to tell where which stories start where and which chapters are summaries.

5 people found this helpful

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  • BB
  • 01-19-18

Great collection

Great collection for all Conan fans,something I have been waiting for a long time. All the greatest Conan adventures in one place with commentary about Robert E. Howard’s life.
Must listen if you’re true heroic fantasy fan.

5 people found this helpful

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  • B Daly
  • 05-29-20

Narrator is terrible

Quite possibly the worst reading of a book I have ever listened to.

There is something classically comforting about the style of Sword & Sorcery found within the Conan Stories, but unfortunately the narrator renders them unlistenable.

It did however encourage me to dust off the actual book and now I’m very much enjoying my adventures through the Age undreamed of.

3 people found this helpful

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  • David
  • 04-21-19

Worth the time investment

It took me a long time to finish the book, and I felt like I'd lost a good friend when I did. The stories themselves are engaging, apart from some in the middle period. The biographical notes at the beginning of each story helps ties things together and gives deeper meaning to them. The narration I first found corny, but it really grew on me as it matched the pulp nature of the material. Definitely picking up even if it will take a while to finish.

1 person found this helpful

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  • O
  • 03-08-19

Well read with insightful comments

I really enjoyed the sword and sorcerery stories along with the interesting forewords. I only had read one or two of these stories before so it was good to hear them all with some context. Felt like vey good value for money. Saddly there are some phrases within the books which really date these stories and can be jarring to the modern ear. Occasionally that pulled me out of my immersion but soon got back in. While the stories are a little formulaic (intentionally) they were not meant to be read/listened to all in one go so bear that in mind when you plunge in.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 06-24-18

just how I remember them

just how I remember them. Yes most women are treated like object's but it was written in 20s and 30s.. just a good easy read and for 1 credit go for it .

1 person found this helpful

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  • Marc Pipmister
  • 02-20-18

fantastic and informative

Great presentation and history of author and genre. still like to know if he was ever paid the $1500 Weird Talks owed him.
Must have loved his mother an awfully lot.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 01-15-18

oh those awful voices! stick to reading please

huge fan of the written works but wanted an audio rendition as my eyes get tired. The story is great but oh those voices! it's panto time when it comes to the ladies voices and it set my teeth on edge. The material is widely acknowledged as racist and sexist and does not need the addition of comical voices reminiscent of the "carry on" movies or "are you being served" to further drive home the point.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Apriori
  • 08-01-22

Loved every moment

Classic stories & brilliant, complex descriptive writing - especially considering the time when it was written.

The men are manly, the women feminine, the bad guys are dastardly. My brain generated visions of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Conan on new adventures, and the narrator no doubt channeled him.

If you are a “woke” cognitive weakling seeking something to be offended about - by Crom - best run away now snowflake - this is not for you.

Loved every moment of this audiobook.

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  • David Riwoe
  • 02-20-22

Excellent book for Conan fans

Excellent book, very enjoyable. Once I started, it was hard to stop. Brought back found memories of reading Conan novels and comics as a child.

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  • Tim, bookworm
  • 08-16-18

Classic Conan

This is a great way to listen to all the original Conan stories written by R.E. Howard. There is short historical information between each story which I also founding interesting.