Great Reviews of Cirsova’s Spring Issue by Jon Mollison

Jon begins with a review of the new Tarzan story, Young Tarzan and the Mysterious She, by Edgar Rice Burroughs and Michael Tierney:

But the story…is it any good?

Of course it is.  Michael Tierney did the heavy lifting here to prepare the work for publishing, and his stitch-work comes off as invisible.

He also touches upon Jeff Stoner’s story, Atop the Cliffs of Ral-Gri:

In most anthologies published today, the ending would have been telegraphed from paragraph one.  Stoner sets up some inter-party rivalries among the Germans, and never lets you forget that these are the historical bad guys, but he also dangles the results of the encounter with the godling just out of reach until the last possible minute.  He touches on and eludes to the holocaust in a way that leaves the reader in doubt as to whether this is an Indiana Jones style story where our archaeologist learns just enough to pull back at the last instant, or whether it is actually an alternate earth where the events of the story lead directly to the horrors of the Holocaust.

Well played, Mister Stoner.

The Cirsova Spring issue is available in eBook, Paperback, and Hardback now.

Also, Michael Tierney’s new Wild Stars adventure, Wild Star Rising, is available for pre-order through IndieGoGo, along with the all new 35th Anniversary Editions of previous Wild Stars adventures!

Short Reviews – Captain Midas, by Alfred Coppel, Jr.

[originally posted here at Castalia House]

Captain Midas by Alfred Coppel, Jr. appeared in the Fall 1949 issue of Planet Stories.

Captain Midas is another ‘tough’ story of the hard, grizzled men of space, but without some of the silliness of Ordeal in Space.  Let me start off by saying this would’ve made a great episode of The Outer Limits.

The story starts with the narrator doing the whole badass cynical ‘man of the sea’ bit, telling the story from old spacemen’s home.  He makes a point of noting that he’s old and dying, waiting for death to take him at last:

“My hair is gray and my face…my face is a mask.  The flesh hangs on my bones like a yellow cloth on a rickety frame.  I am old, old. And I wait for the weight of years I’ve never lived to drag me under and let me forget the awful things my eyes have seen.”

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Cirsova Presents: Wild Star Rising!

The IndieGoGo is live!

Cirsova Publishing is teaming up once again with Michael Tierney to publish his all new SFF time-travel adventure set in his Wild Stars universe, Wild Star Rising!

Plus, to celebrate the 35th Anniversary of Wild Stars, Cirsova will be releasing all-new premium magazine-style editions of the Wild Stars graphic novel, Book of Circles, and the hybrid comic/novel, Force Majeure. We’ll also be reprinting a new 2019 edition of last year’s Kickstarter-exclusive illustrated novella, Time Warmageddon.

Wild Stars transparent 2

Cirsova Publishing is creating an all new standard edition of all previous Wild Stars books that will match the new release, Wild Star Rising.

Wild Stars: Book of Circles collects the early comics, Erlik (WS Vo1 1 #1) and First Marker (WS Vol 2 #1), placed chronologically within the 2001-2002 run of Wild Stars comics (WS Vol 3 #1-7)

Book of Circles tells the story of conflicting timelines and parallel worlds that culminate an alliance between a wolf-like alien race called the Brothan and alternate time-line fascists, the Artomiques, that aims to attack and destroy the earth by launching a comet at Jupiter to ignite it as a second sun.

These comics feature artwork by Frank Brunner (Doctor Strange, Howard the Duck), David Brewer (Cable, Deadpool), Dave Simons (Ghost Rider), and Michael Tierney, plus the collected editions feature additional painted works by Mary Tierney.

This new edition of the almost 300 page graphic novel will be printed in Cirsova Magazine’s standard 8.5″ x 11″ format, and will fit nicely on the shelf between your collection of Cirsovas and the rest of the 35th Anniversary Wild Stars books.

Wild Stars II: Force Majeure wraps an 83,000 word novel around 38 pages of comics penciled by Armando Gil (Conan the King, Ka-Zar the Savage), along with 50 ‘flashback’ illustrations by Dave Simons.

Seeking revenge for his defeat, Carthage kidnaps the First Marker’s infant daughter and absconds with her through time! Erlik and Daestar aid Mark Mackavicka and Akara in their search through time for their missing daughter. Except to preserve the future and prevent a resurgence of the Brothan empire, they can’t rescue Mark and Akara’s daughter until she’s already a grown woman!

This new edition of the novel / comic hybrid will be printed in Cirsova Magazine’s standard 8.5″ x 11″ format.

Wild Stars III: Time Warmageddon continues the saga of the Wild Stars as former-President Bully Bravo seeks to solve the mysteries of distant suns going missing, only to be replaced by white dwarfs, and newly discovered planets showing the apparent signs of previous human colonization, all while pursued by an evil pirate queen and a rogue time-traveler trying to create a god.

This novella featured cover art by Timothy Lim (My Hero Magademia, Black Hops: USA GI, Street Fighter), and interior illustrations  and two variant covers by Mark Wheatley (Song of Giants: the Poetry of Pulp, The Flash, Blood of the Innocent).

This new edition will reprint this one-time Kickstarter-exclusive edition with new bonus content, including an additional epilogue on the whereabouts of Akara and the First Marker, two stories by Michael Tierney originally published in Cirsova Magazine, and the previously unpublished Wild Stars story, The Grimgrip.

Wild Stars IV: Wild Star Rising is both a prequel and sequel to the previous Wild Stars adventures. Looking back 75,000 years into the past to the last days of Atlantis and the final exodus to the Wild Stars led by the Ancient Warrior, Wild Star Rising unfolds the aeons-long plan to rescue the Ancient Warrior’s long-lost beloved, Phaedra, from the heart of a black hole where she was imprisoned by another powerful immortal… A sailor from earth’s distant past must join with the Ancient Warrior’s Wild Stars companions to help them navigate the great gulfs of space, free Phaedra from her black-hole prison, and stop the extra-dimensional squids that could destroy the universe if they can meet up and mate!

This illustrated novel will be printed in Cirsova Magazine’s 8.5″ x 11″ format, matching the previously released Time Warmageddon, the new 35th Anniversary Editions of Book of Circles and Force Majeure, and your collection of Cirsovas!

This edition will also contain the first-ever extensive bio-glossary of Wild Stars universe, making it a must-have for old and new fans alike!

Short Reviews – Ordeal in Space by Ralph Sloan

Ordeal in Space by Ralph Sloan appeared in the Fall 1949 issue of Planet Stories.  It is unrelated to the Robert Heinlein story by the same name.Planet Stories Logo

Ordeal in Space is a gritty story of a cop who’s walking a dangerous line between the law and his desire for revenge.  It’s a pretty ‘tough’ tale that’s only slightly marred by one of the sillier sci-fi elements, but I’ll get to that in a minute.

Space Patrol Lt. Mike Logan approaches a prison cell with hate and revenge in his heart – he’s going shoot Edward Snyder, the criminal who murdered his brother.  Before he can pull the trigger, Logan is apprehended by one of the prison guards.

Logan’s punishment is to personally take Snyder back to Earth to be hung and see that he gets there alive and in one piece.

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Wild Stars Launches Tomorrow + Wild Stars RPG

Tomorrow, we begin taking pre-orders for the Wild Stars IV: Wild Star Rising and the rest of the 35th Anniversary goodies, but I wanted to bring everyone’s attention to this other crowdfund from Chenault & Grey / Troll Lord Games.

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/676918054/amazing-adventures-5e-rpg?ref=nav_search&result=project&term=amazing%20adventures

C&G / Troll Lord is a local Little Rock-based publisher, best known for Castles & Crusades. Last year, they also published Michael Tierney’s Edgar Rice Burroughs 100 Year Art Chronology.

The Amazing Adventures RPG crowdfund on Kickstarter includes a $50,000 stretch goal for a Wild Stars RPG supplement.

While admittedly, 5e does not feel very D&D-like to me, I’ve noted frequently in the past that it would be a good system for super-hero teams. And Wild Stars features all sorts of crazy aliens and monsters and immortal space warriors, so a system like Amazing Adventures could be perfect for it! If you want to see a Wild Stars RPG setting, you have 5 days to back and put them over that $50k stretch-goal.

Also, I’d be remiss if I didn’t note that our upcoming edition of Wild Stars IV: Wild Star Rising contains an extensive bio-glossary appendix, Wild Stars Navigational Chart: The Multiversal Guide, effectively making this fall release one of the first supplements, valuable to old fans and new.

We’ll be launching our own crowdfund tomorrow morning around 9-10 CST.

Finally, on top of everything else, tomorrow our illustrated edition of Leigh Brackett’s Black Amazon of Mars drops! So if you haven’t pre-ordered it, be sure to do so!

Black Amazon of Mars Front Only

Short Reviews – The Giants Return by Robert Abernathy

[originally posted here at Castalia House]

The Giants Return by Robert Abernathy appeared in the Fall 1949 issue of Planet Stories.Planet Stories Logo

Quest III has been on a 900 year voyage from an Earth whose burgeoning population threatens the future of Mankind.  As one of three ships sent forth to scout out likely locations to establish colonies to transplant large segments of the human race, Quest III is ultimately returning in failure.  While it has been ten long years for the crew—many of whom have children who have yet to see the earth—due to time dilation from near-light speed travel, an epoch has passed on Earth.

The crew and captain wonder if their mission was even remembered and how what government now in charge—if there even is a government—will receive them and do with the information they return with.

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