I recently had the pleasure of returning to Pulp Crazy, this time to talk about Blood of Ancient Opar and also to read aloud the book’s first chapter. Check it out on the embedded YouTube video below or download the mp3 audio file from Pulp Crazy’s website here.
Blood of Ancient Opar is one part thrilling adventure in the pulp tradition, one part exploration of human nature, and one part solemn family drama worthy of Kurosawa, and if another drop of ink is never expended on Opar, then no better capstone could be asked for than Blood of Ancient Opar.
Read the entire review here.
I’ve been very fortunate to have Bob Eggleton illustrate a number of my books. The cover paintings for my duology of novellas set in Philip José Farmer’s Ancient Opar—Hadon, King of Opar and Blood of Ancient Opar—are particularly stunning and define, respectively, Opar and its adjoining valley in my mind. In fact, the artwork inspired scenes that I incorporated into the narrative of both novellas. Bob, of course, also painted a striking, apocalyptic panorama of Khokarsa, the larger empire of which Opar is a part, details of which grace the covers of the Restored Edition of Flight to Opar and The Song of Kwasin.
On September 1, 1973, at the fourteenth annual Dum-Dum convention in honor of Edgar Rice Burroughs, Philip José Farmer made an exciting announcement about a new series he was writing: one set in an ancient civilization of which the lost city of Opar was but one far-flung queendom. The convention was held at the Royal York Hotel in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, and hosted by the Burroughs Bibliophiles in conjunction with the 31st World Science Fiction Convention (TorCon II). Fortunately, an audio recording exists, which you can listen to below.
Farmer was the banquet speaker at the Burroughs convention. He was introduced by Burroughs Bulletin founding editor (and close friend of Phil and his wife Bette) Vern Coriell, who remarked during his introduction that the only reason Phil hadn’t won a Hugo Award that year is because they didn’t have a category for “Biography.” The previous year, Doubleday had published Phil’s Tarzan Alive: A Definitive Biography of Lord Greystoke.
As a prelude to this announcement, Farmer discusses Tarzan Alive and his anthology on feral humans, Mother Was a Lovely Beast. The Ancient Opar announcement is at the 10:12 mark.
Listen to Philip José Farmer’s complete banquet address to the Burroughs Bibliophiles below.
Some interesting observations about the address:
- You can hear Phil pronouncing the name “Hadon,” the hero of Hadon of Ancient Opar and Flight to Opar. Just as he indicated in his article “The Khokarsan Language” (available in the Restored Edition of Flight to Opar published by Meteor House in 2015), he pronounces the “a” as “a low central spread vowel (as in Spanish)” and the “o” as “a mid-back rounded vowel (as in Spanish).” On other words: “Hä-dōn.”
- Phil announces that Richard Corben would illustrate the cover of the first edition of Hadon of Ancient Opar. However, plans must have changed along the way, since Roy G. Krenkel ended up as the final cover artist. Corben later went on to illustrate the 1975 Fokker D-LXIX Press edition of A Feast Unknown.
- Phil mentions that he envisioned the Ancient Opar series would encompass about ten books. He lived to write only three novels in the series (Hadon of Ancient Opar, Flight to Opar, and The Song of Kwasin), but the tale of Khokarsa continues to unfold in books such as Exiles of Kho, Hadon, King of Opar, and the forthcoming Blood of Ancient Opar.
- Phil mentions Frank Brueckel and John Harwood’s essay on the history of Opar, which inspired his Ancient Opar series. While the lengthy article was then scheduled to appear in the Burroughs Bulletin, it never did. Many years later, however, the monograph was finally published in the book Heritage of the Flaming God, ed. Alan Hanson and Michael Winger, which is available here.
- The “Ian” whom Phil calls out to in the audience in regard to the publication of John Flint Roy’s A Guide to Barsoom is publisher Ian Ballantine.
- My favorite quote from this banquet address is a somewhat prophetic one: “Now I think it’s a measure of a writer’s true importance in the field of literature if the writer generates a tremendous amount of work past his own work.”
I’m pleased to announce that Blood of Ancient Opar, the fifth installment in the Khokarsa series, is now available for preorder from Meteor House. Once again, I am pleased to have the stunning artwork of Bob Eggleton grace the cover of one of my books.
Without further ado, here’s the announcement from the publisher:
In 2015, Meteor House published Hadon, King of Opar, a new Khokarsa novella by Christopher Paul Carey—Farmer’s coauthor on The Song of Kwasin, and the author of the Khokarsa series prequel Exiles of Kho—about which the British Fantasy Society said, “This book, the author’s best so far, cements [Carey’s] position as quite possibly the best writer currently working in the classic heroic fantasy genre.”
Philip José Farmer’s Khokarsa series records the history of a lost civilization that thrived in the heart of ancient Africa twelve thousand years ago at the twilight of the last ice age. The novels Hadon of Ancient Opar, Flight to Opar, and The Song of Kwasin told the story of the heroes Hadon of Opar and Kwasin of Dythbeth, as they battled a power-hungry tyrant who sought to overthrow the beneficent order of mother earth goddess Kho and raise up the mandate of baleful sun god Resu in its place.
Now the epic saga of Khokarsa continues in Blood of Ancient Opar, a brand-new sequel novella to Hadon, King of Opar by Christopher Paul Carey, chronicling Hadon’s further adventures in the fallen empire’s last remaining queendom. Using Farmer’s own notes, Carey at last fills in the missing history of a civilization lost to the mists of time…
On the heels of a devastating invasion by a ruthless pirate lord’s army, the destiny of Khokarsa’s last remaining queendom hangs in the balance. Even as King Hadon leads his forces to victory against the raiders, the conniving oracle of Opar and the high priest of the Flaming God conspire to place themselves upon the ivory throne, launching a civil war that rages throughout the city. But deep beneath Opar, a secret message from Sahhindar, the god of Time, has lain buried for centuries, waiting for Hadon and his daughter La to uncover it. Soon Hadon comes to suspect that La conceals her own mysterious plans, but will they save the city of gold and jewels from utter destruction—or shatter the foundation of Time itself?
Blood of Ancient Opar will be published simultaneously in both hardcover and paperback signed limited editions!
- Buy the Signed Limited Edition Trade Paperback for $16 (+shipping)
- Buy the the Signed Limited Edition Hardcover for $27 (+shipping)
- Buy both together for $38—save $5 off the pair (+shipping)
The books are due out in the Summer of 2016, so be sure to preorder early. As with all of our Signed Limited Edition Novellas, your name will appear on the acknowledgments page in the same order you preorder—as long as you preorder by June 15th 2016.
As always, the print run will be determined by the number of preorders received. Not many copies beyond those reserved will be printed, another reason to get your order in today!
Preorder Blood of Ancient Opar now from Meteor House.
I’m excited to announce that this winter Meteor House will be publishing a brand-new edition of The Song of Kwasin, the Khokarsa novel I coauthored with Philip Jose Farmer. The novel has been out of print since 2012, having sold out shortly after its publication in an omnibus of the first three books of the Khokarsa series. The novel has never before been available in a standalone edition. Here’s the preorder copy from the publisher:
US $22 tpb/$33 hc
5.5 × 8.5, 400+ pages
Unlimited Trade Paperback Edition
Signed Limited Edition Hardcover
(Signed by Christopher Paul Carey)
Meteor House is pleased to announce the first-ever standalone edition of Philip José Farmer and Christopher Paul Carey’s critically acclaimed novel The Song of Kwasin, the third volume of the Khokarsa series. The Song of Kwasin previously appeared only in an expensive hardcover omnibus collecting the first three novels of the Khokarsa series and it has never been published alone in its own volume! So if you’ve read Hadon of Ancient Opar and Flight to Opar, and have been waiting for the epic climax to Philip Jose Farmer’s original Khokarsa trilogy, this new Meteor House edition—available as both an affordable trade paperback and a collectible limited edition hardcover—is your chance to finally read the thrilling, adventure-packed third book!
Meteor House’s new edition of The Song of Kwasin also features cover art and a frontispiece by Hugo Award-winning artist Bob Eggleton as well as rare and previously unpublished bonus materials, including:
- A brand-new introduction by noted author and critic Paul Di Filippo*
- A Preface to the New Edition by Christopher Paul Carey *
- “Kwasin and the Bear God” by Philip José Farmer and Christopher Paul Carey (a 20,000-word novella featuring a lost adventure of Kwasin)
- The Khokarsan Calendar by Philip José Farmer**
- The Plants of Khokarsa by Philip José Farmer**
- A Guide to Khokarsa by Christopher Paul Carey (expanded from the guide in the
- Restored Edition of Flight to Opar)
- Notes on the Khokarsa Series by Philip José Farmer*
- Philip José Farmer’s Original Outline to The Song of Kwasin**
- Philip José Farmer’s Alternate Outline to The Song of Kwasin*
- Correspondence by Philip José Farmer to Frank J. Brueckel and John Harwood, authors of “Heritage of the Flaming God,” the monumental essay that inspired the Khokarsa series*
* Never before published.
** Only previously available in an out-of-print and extremely hard-to-find signed limited edition.
THE SONG OF KWASIN
Volume 3 of the Khokarsa Series
The epic sequel to Flight to Opar!
After years of exile in the Wild Lands, the giant warrior Kwasin of Dythbeth returns to the mighty Khokarsan Empire seeking the oracle’s forgiveness, only to find his native land torn asunder in a bloody civil war. The tyrannical King Minruth has usurped the throne from his daughter Awineth and, allied with the priests of the sun god Resu, overturned the beneficent, centuries-old rule of the priestesses of the goddess Kho. His spoiled cousin Hadon having fled with his companions to far-flung Opar, Kwasin soon finds he will have to take up the cause alone against Minruth the Mad.
Wielding his massive Ax of Victory, forged from the heart of a fallen star, Kwasin sets out to reconquer the throne of Khokarsa. But when he finds himself caught between a vengeful queen who seeks to control him and a conspiring priest who wants him dead, Kwasin must decide between reining in his unruly passions or unleashing them in a fury that could hurl the empire into oblivion. For the high priestess has decreed that unless Kwasin can master his wild nature and stop King Minruth before he attains immortality in an unholy ritual of the sun god, Great Kho will destroy all the land!