Conan and the Treasure of Python
Cover of first edition
|Author||John Maddox Roberts|
|Cover artist||Ken Kelly|
|Series||Conan the Barbarian|
|Genre||Sword and sorcery|
|Media type||Print (Paperback)|
Conan and the Treasure of Python is a fantasy novel by American writer John Maddox Roberts, featuring Robert E. Howard's sword and sorcery hero Conan the Barbarian. It was first published in trade paperback by Tor Books in November 1993; a regular paperback edition followed from the same publisher in August 1994.
In Asgalun, Conan is hired to lead a party to Kush, by a man whose brother has vanished seeking a legendary treasure. Conan takes the job, though the project is almost derailed at the outset by an attack by corsairs. In Kush the expedition is joined by Goma, a mysterious native who serves it as a guide. A long march to the reputed treasure region ensues, including a harrowing journey through a waterless desert. Finally the seekers reach a secret kingdom, in which they are imprisoned. Their guide is then revealed as the realm's rightful monarch, the rule of which has been usurped by a tyrant with the aid of a witch doctor. A battle must be fought and a horrible lake monster faced before all can be resolved.
Don D'Ammassa, writing of Roberts' Conan novels, noted that "[a]lthough Roberts did not recreate Howard's character exactly, making him more intellectual and less inclined to solve every problem by hitting it with a sword, his evocation of the barbaric setting is superior to that of most of the other writers contributing to the series." This novel, he writes, "is a rewrite of Haggard's King Solomon's Mines with the characters shuffled around a bit but with essentially the same plot. ... It's an effective adaptation of a classic story although Conan seems considerably more laid back than usual – not surprising since he's Allan Quatermain."
Reviewer Ryan Harvey considered the book "one of the most interesting of the Tor novels," and the writer "the most consistently successful of its stable of authors," while also noting that "this novel is literally King Solomon's Mines ... Roberts copies the exact plot of the classic H. Rider Haggard 1885 adventure novel and recasts it as a Conan story, with the legendary barbarian starring in the Allan Quatermain role."
- Conan and the Treasure of Python title listing at the Internet Speculative Fiction Database
- D'Ammassa, Don (February 2006). Encyclopedia of fantasy and horror fiction. Infobase Publishing. p. 292. ISBN 978-0-8160-6192-1. Retrieved 23 August 2011.
- D'Ammassa, Don. "Conan and the Treasure of Python" (review). Nov. 26, 2017.
- Harvey, Ryan. "Pastiches 'R' Us: Conan and the Treasure of Python" (Review), Mar. 24, 2009.
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