I have been very, very bad. I turned from finishing a weighty and fascinating volume on Shakespeare to rush through a childhood favorite, Edgar Rice Burroughs’ first John Carter of Mars book.
Okay, it’s dated and juvenile at spots, but what’s not to like about the new Library of America volume about the Confederate veteran who lies down in an Arizona cave and wakes to find himself on the planet Barsoom – Mars – where he fights fierce green four-armed Thraks and wins the heart of the red-skinned humanoid Princess of Helium, Dejah Thoris.
I’m not trying to justify the selection except to say it’s summer, the book is great fun, and after its final page, I remembered how excited I was as a child to meet John Carter and shortly thereafter Burroughs’ other great creation, Tarzan of the Apes. Happy beach reading!