The Ape Man's Brother Hardcover – 31 Jan 2014
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Top customer reviews
It compares well to similar work by Philip Jose Farmer (who wrote what five stories of Tarzan in the real world?).
If you have read Mr. Lansdale's work before you will like this, if not it is an excellent example of his quirky, irreverant style. Highly recommened, a great little story. (Try some of the collections that are cheap on the kindle if you liked this)
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
Ape Man’s Brother does not fit into the official Tarzan cannon but is instead a retelling from Nkima’s point of view (or Chimpanzee-Mike, if you prefer the movie incarnation). The name Tarzan is never used since, as the story goes, that was not his real name. There is a lot of revisionist history, mostly played for laughs: Tarzan is a drunk, Jane falls for the ape, etc. A little bit of violence and bawdy humor. It’s a rather fun story, not serious at all, and it has some minor connections to other Lansdale works.
Lansdale reuses his alternate universe where Japan settled the American West Coast, also referenced in the novel Zeppelins West as well as the short stories “Trains Not Taken” and “Letter from the South, Two Moons West of Nacogdoches”.
Two other Lansdale works also reference Burroughs’ fictional world of Pellucidar, which is part of the larger Tarzan mythology (from Tarzan at the Earth’s Core and Tarzan: The Lost Adventure). Lansdale’s short story “Way Down There” also features a journey to that fabled land that time forgot. His graphic novel Red Range (1999) is about a black cowboy who eventually travels to Pellucidar in a cliffhanger ending.
Joe Lansdale’s website lists Ape Man’s Brother as a “limited edition chapbook”, although it received a hardback printing in 2013 from Subterranean Press. It is really a novella in length and may get included in a larger collection at some point. As of now, it is only in print in this kindle edition.
The book covers the love triangle between Tarzan, Jane and Cheetah in unexpected ways.
The presence of Tyler Bowen from Burroughs's The Land That Time Forgot places Tarzan's jungle dwelling not in Africa but in the hidden Prehistoric world located north of Greenland that we encounter there. This also makes this version of Cheetah, not a chimpanzee, but closer to a missing link.
Joe Landsdale was the writer selected to complete Burroughs's own lost Tarzan novel certainly knows his stuff. He mixes in enough twists to make this story highly entertaining to both experts and novices.
Subterranean Press has done a beautiful job on this small little hardcover. It features a dust jacket and five full size illustrations by Ken Laager. For under $20 you can't go wrong.
The Big Guy, called that because his true name is unpronounceable by humans, the name he was given by the narrator's people, not really apes but proto-humans. You see, he didn't grow up in Africa, but on the island of Burroughs' Caspak series.
an amusing, interesting little novella by one of the great writers working today.
This book is complete entertainment, a rollicking tale of Tarzan told from another perspective. It flows like time does when you're listening to a best friend tell you a captivating story. Suddenly, it's done and time has disappeared. Reading Lansdale is like that. Not a long story, but a wonderful addition for Lansdale readers.
Never read Lansdale? This is a good place to start as any.
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