The denizens of Opar are ruled by a beautiful Queen named La, who is high priestess of the Oparians and falls in love with Tarzan in The Return of Tarzan, the second book in the series. In the 1970s Farmer wrote a novel set in the prehistory of Burroughs Opar, entitled Hadon of Ancient Opar (1974) which was to be the beginning of a series. The eponymous hero of the novel is Hadon, a young warrior from Opar sent to represent his city at the Great Khokarsan Games, a sort of Olympic Games set to choose a new King every generation. At the time the novel begins however, there is a struggle going on between the patriarchal followers of Resu and the matriarchal followers of Kho. Farmer has a lot of fun with the set-up of the history of the Khokarsan ancestors of the later day Oparians Tarzan will later encounter. Hadon of Ancient Opar is a fun read, and it is especially so for die-hard fans of Burroughs, but it may be a little confusing for those readers who arent familiar with the Tarzan books. While the society is matriarchal, with women priestesses being in charge both in relationships and government in the villages and cities Hadon and his group pass through, the essential passiveness of a couple of the major female characters may be off-putting to some readers.
I hadn't read Farmer's Time's Last Gift, so I had no idea who the man/god Sahhindar referenced throughout the book was supposed to be. A few years back, I became reacquainted with Farmer's Wold Newton works (rereading Tarzan Alive, and moving on from there), and so I was excited when I heard Titan Books was reissuing several of them, including Hadon. That's not a surprise with Farmer coming very much from the Burroughs-Doyle-etal school of pulp adventure writing: move the story along, make things happen. it's clear that they are both absolutely beautiful physically) in comparison to the male characters, but they're still more well-rounded than a lot of the other fantasy and adventure fiction I read back in that period (and certainly more well-developed that most of the females in Burroughs' own work). If you enjoy pulp and adventure and/or light fantasy, you'll enjoy Hadon of Ancient Opar. Chris is THE expert on Farmer's Khokarsa works, even co-authoring the final book in the trilogy, The Song of Kwasin, with Farmer and writing other Khokarsa stories with Farmer's blessing.
The writing is not particularly amazing, the characters not particularly interesting, the world not quite as unusual as I'd hoped, but he moves the plot along quickly, and never lingers. I picked this up because I love the idea of lost ice age civilizations, and I've heard interesting things about Farmer. I suppose the idea is that Khokarsa, as the analogue of Atlantis, is the source of all of these things in the later civilizations. Finally, Farmer's decision to populate his ancient African civilization with central Asian descended characters (according to the back matter) was a little puzzling. Hadon as hero had more emotional range than I expected: he even cries at a few points.
Hoy, con la red pues eso A los más puristas les horrorizaría tal vez las cuatro estrellas que le doy si lo comparan con el estilo actual, pero igual es que no han visto películas de Tarzán, ni leído a Conan, ni han sido absorbidos por el maestro Farmer allá en su juventud.
Un romanzo che in originale si intitola "Hadon of Ancient Opar" (ossia, "Hadon dell'antica Opar") per quale razza di motivo deve essere tradotto in "Opar, la città immortale"? Stravolge tutte le aspettative che un lettore si può fare, l'intera sostanza del romanzo assume un altro significato. Per il resto, tutto ciò che può essere riconducibile al concetto di fantasy e semplicemente frutto delle credenze e delle superstizioni dei personaggi - come in un qualunque romanzo storico ambientato prima dell'illuminismo. Ora, mi rendo conto di essere stato un po' duro nei confronti di un autore che non è nato ieri e che ha scritto vagonate di romanzi e più di un "ciclo".
Hadon conspires to have said rival arrive late to rowing duty by having hot soup spilled on him. I went back a few paragraphs to see if I missed something, and Hadon had just relieved himself in a bucket, was soup a euphemism? My only other encounter with Farmer was the barely amusing Venus on a Half Shell, another based on someone elses creation.
It has a few things going for it, such as fascinating and thorough world-building (it's set in a prehistoric ancient Africa, about a civilization based around several inland seas) and a neat plot (the hero is defending his city against a megalomaniacal king, who usurped the throne from his daughter, the rightful queen). Too bad, because I liked the world-building a lot.