Tarzan of the Apes (Dover Thrift)

Edgar Rice Burroughs

Published by Dover Publications; Revised ed. edition (April 14, 1997)
ISBN 10: 0486295702 / ISBN 13: 9780486295701
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Having failed in a number of occupations as a young man, Edgar Rice Burroughs (1875–1950) found his niche as a writer with Tarzan of the Apes, first published in 1914. Highly imaginative, exotic and suspenseful, the story tells of an infant — the son of an aristocratic English couple — abandoned when his parents die in the jungles of Africa. Rescued and reared by apes, he learns to speak their language and imitate their ability to travel swiftly through the treetops.
Eventually, his courage, immense strength and exceptional intelligence earn him the respect and admiration not only of the apes, but of all the creatures of the jungle. The ape-man's story is told here in this classic, fast-paced novel, packed with riveting adventures as Tarzan avenges the killing of Kala, his ape-mother, subdues man-eating beasts of the jungle, meets and falls in love with the beautiful Jane Porter, vanquishes greedy pirate-adventurers, and deals with assorted other threats.
Although Burroughs followed this story with many Tarzan sequels, it is doubtful if any ever equaled this novel for its originality, readability and sheer storytelling power. In this inexpensive edition, complete and unabridged, it will thrill a new generation with the legendary exploits of the "Lord of the Apes."

Review: First published in 1914, Edgar Rice Burroughs's romance has lost little of its force over the years--as film revivals and TV series well attest. Tarzan of the Apes is very much a product of its age: replete with bloodthirsty natives and a bulky, swooning American Negress, and haunted by what zoo specialists now call charismatic megafauna (great beasts snarling, roaring, and stalking, most of whom would be out of place in a real African jungle). Burroughs countervails such incorrectness, however, with some rather unattractive representations of white civilization--mutinous, murderous sailors, effete aristos, self-involved academics, and hard-hearted cowards. At Tarzan's heart rightly lies the resourceful and hunky title character, a man increasingly torn between the civil and the savage, for whom cutlery will never be less than a nightmare.

The passages in which the nut-brown boy teaches himself to read and write are masterly and among the book's improbable, imaginative best. How tempting it is to adopt the ten-year-old's term for letters--"little bugs"! And the older Tarzan's realization that civilized "men were indeed more foolish and more cruel than the beasts of the jungle," while not exactly a new notion, is nonetheless potent. The first in Burroughs's serial is most enjoyable in its resounding oddities of word and thought, including the unforgettable "When Tarzan killed he more often smiled than scowled; and smiles are the foundation of beauty."

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Title: Tarzan of the Apes (Dover Thrift)
Publisher: Dover Publications; Revised ed. edition (April 14, 1997)
Binding: Paperback

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