cover image Edgar Rice Burroughs' Tarzan: The Lost Adventure

Edgar Rice Burroughs' Tarzan: The Lost Adventure

Joe R. Lansdale, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Thomas R. Yeates. Dark Horse Comics, $19.95 (208pp) ISBN 978-1-56971-083-8

The Ape Man rampages through the African jungle once again in a brawny, brutal adventure that Burroughs (1875- 1950) left unfinished at his death. It was recently completed by Lansdale in a series of paperbacks (1995), which have now been combined into this hardcover. Johnny Weismuller and those familiar with Tarzan only through film and TV may blanch at this noble beast who drinks hot blood from his bare-handed kills and slays foes with abandon and near superhuman skill. But this Tarzan is in the dark spirit of the Burroughs novels, and he's revived with pulpish glee by Lansdale, a smart choice whose own fiction (The Two-Bear Mambo, 1995) acknowledges the ferocity of life. Here, Tarzan, aided by Jad-bal-ja the lion and Nkima the chimp, defends a party of American archeologists in search of the Lost City of Ur. He combats brigands who would plunder the party and the jungle, the savage inhabitants of Ur and, finally, a mantis-like monster from the earth's core-a reminder that Burroughs's Tarzan novels were as much science fiction as jungle adventure. It's a fierce tale, told in rough prose, but readers who pant, for instance, at the sight of Tarzan slashing through a band of apes who have kidnapped a young blonde as their ""slave"" will thrill to this yarn. (Apr.)