DUMAREST OF TERRA CONCLUDES

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Back in 1967, E. C. Tubb’s Winds of Gath introduced an adventurer who was looking for his home planet.  The adventurer was Earl Dumarest and his homeworld is Earth.  The problem was that mysteriously almost all evidence of Earth had been expunged.  For 33 books, Tubb described Dumarest’s search for his home across a galaxy of planets.  Here and there, Dumarest would find clues that pointed the way to Earth’s secret location.  Of course, there has to be a bunch of Bad Guys trying to stop Dumarest.  Tubb chose the cyborgs called the Cyclan who hunt Dumarest to prevent him from finding Earth.  In addition, Dumarest also possesses the affinity twin, a way to control the mind of anyone he comes in contact with.  The Cyclan want the affinity twin to help them achieve galactic domination.

Yes, the writing is formulaic.  Yes, some of the middle volumes don’t advance Dumarest’s search very much.  But, all in all, the Dumarest series is satisfying space opera.

I felt sorry to see the series end.  DAW Books dropped the Dumarest series in 1985.  Volume 32, The Return, was published by a small press in 1997.  Since then, I’ve dreamed about completing the series.  But now Tubb has done that for me.  I have mixed feelings about Child of Earth.  It concludes the series, but leaves plenty unexplained.  At 89, I’m guessing E. C. Tubb isn’t going to do much more writing so this final volume will have to suffice.

185 thoughts on “DUMAREST OF TERRA CONCLUDES

  1. Steve

    Thanks a lot to Phil for taking the time to post. Of course I definitely will purchase the two new (sadly last) books.

    I would certainly not want to see Dumarest continued by anyone else no matter how “major” a name. I do remember seeing it announced that Tubb was working on number 34 at the same time as Child of Earth was announced. I wonder, if there had been a Dumarest 34, what Tubb had in mind, because the series leaves plenty of open questions!!!

    PS a quick search found this: http://www.fantasticliterature.com/newsletter145.htm

    Reply
    1. eric barinka

      i don’t wish to be pedantic, but as a longtime fan of the dumarest of terra series it grates on me to see inaccuracies stated about the stories, to wit:
      1. info about earth was not “expunged” nor was there anything “mysterious” about it. in the galactic civilization of the distant future postulated in the novels, earth has become a worn out backwater planet which no longer has any ties with other worlds and whose few remaining inhabitants have reverted to savagery. this was the very reason dumerest stowed away aboard that ship, to get away from a miserable existence with no hope. as he moved further and further into the galaxy he lost track of the way back as did everyone else. earth’s location was not expunged, it was simply forgotten. this provides the basis for dumarest’s quest, moving from planet to planet sifting through ancient obscure records which might give him a clue.
      2. the cyclan are not cyborgs. they don’t have mechanical parts. they are human beings devoted to pure logic and taking over the galaxy. to aid them in these endeavors, promising candidates selected at a young age submit to brain surgery that makes them incapable of emotions which will distract them from their purpose as well as years of rigorous mental training. the end result is admittedly a robot like genius but still flesh and blood.

      at any rate, thanks for letting me know about the final book in the series. i read the books years ago and just figured tubb lost interest. i will definitely check it out.

      Reply
      1. george Post author

        Eric, I’ve always thought that Earth was hidden because the Cyclan base was there. E. C. Tubb was able to sustain suspense around Dumarest’s quest for over 30 books. A remarkable feat!

  2. Fiona

    Oh dear, I’ve only just learned of Ted’s death with a visit to this site. He certainly did live a long and, I hope, fulfilled life. What a superb writer, and I join wholeheartedly in hoping that his literary talents will live on and be appreciated by future readers. I am so glad that Ted got Dumarest home to Earth; just imagine if he had never got there! Thank you, Ted.

    Dear Mr. Harbottle, what can I say? I had never read a Northwest Smith story previously! I am, however, one of the few who purchased Death God’s Doom and The Sleeping City. Maybe you could give the details of where these books can be found, so others can appreciate them? As you so rightly say, George’s site is about the only one where this kind of intelligent interaction regarding Ted (and Dumarest) happens. We should all visit a little more regularly and share our thoughts and findings with each other…

    Fiona

    Reply
    1. george Post author

      I agree with your heartfelt sentiments, Fiona. E. C. Tubb’s death leaves the Dumarest Saga slightly incomplete. The Cyclan still threaten the Universe. I hope Phil Harbottle can find a writer who feels an affinity with Dumarest and his quest to continue the series. I, too, have read DEATH GOD’S DOOM and THE SLEEPING CITY. Planet Stories has reprinted C. L. Moore’s NORTHWEST OF EARTH short story collection. Highly recommended!

      Reply
  3. Grady Loy

    I tried to post earlier but it appears as if it did not make it to you. I came across a thriving bunch of fans here in Japan. It appear that the Dumarest series was published in Japan in transation. I think they may have had an entirely different set of covers (The winds of Gath has a twilit desert and with a triceratops skeleton half buried in the sand. “Derai” is called “Planet Forgon Where One Sees Dreams”, Kalin is called “Symbiotic Planet Solis” http://mgfcompany.net/ufo/ds_title.html ) I was also interested to find a thriving fan group of sorts (There is a Dumarest thread – I think it part of a larger SF group ) The last title offerred in Japanese is called Home Planet Earth and is Number 32. I thought I was familiar with both UK and US covers but these, although generally sticking to the same appearance of Dumarest as one finds on the Daw cover (US) of the “Incident on Ath” I think are different drawings. I would be interested to know if that is the case.) They were translated by Kaneda Kenpira, Oniishi Ken, Sakai Teranobu, Saji Yumiko, and Sawa Mariko. They apparently do not have Child of Earth yet. There is a Dumarest Saga Fan Club. I have not made contact with them yet but they seem very dedicated.

    On a new Novel to be written by a major SF author. I would happily read it but I cannot imagine it would be quite the same. Arthur C. Clark (who I think must have been Mr. Tubb’s contemporary) wrote a novel in the late ’40’s called “Against the Fall of Night” that was very popular – Clark rewrote it several years later and many of his fans preferred the earlier version. Against the Fall of Night was sort of the classic science fiction novel of the prewar SF writers generation (albeit with the typical Arthur C. Clark – “compared to what is out there we are pond scum” – twist but this was perhaps the least humbling of his novels. It had that spirit of wonder and searching and infinite possibility that was characteristic of that generation of writers – the same sense that Tubb always managed to covey in the Dumarest novels in spite of depraved state to which humanity had often allowed itself to sink. Anyway, Clark gave his blessing to Gregory Benford to write a sequel which became “Beyond the Fall of Night”. It is a good book but the characters and themes from the first really do not live on in the second (Benford wrote the story as sort of an eco-space opera – “Life will find a way” which makes humanity sort of irrelevant as long as it seeks to follow its concious vision. Eco-science fiction has a respectable history with Frank Herbert and Larry Niven dabbling extensively and masterfully in it. And Benford does well. But it is not really a sequel. I am just worried that the only one who could really ever write Dumarest was Mr. Tubb. He appears to me to have put much of his philosophy and world view into the books which account for much of the power of the stories. It is terribly hard I think for any writer to put him or herself in the mindset of another, particularly one who lived through such a unique time period as Mr. Tubb.

    Well someone will try or they won’t. It is not for me to say. I will wish them luck and read whatever I can get my hands on but it will never be quite the same. Does anyone know how many languages the Dumarest Saga was eventually translated into?

    Reply
    1. george Post author

      Excellent post, Grady! I’m glad the Dumarest Saga is alive and well in Japan. We have only to look at the many writers who tried to capture the spirit of the James Bond books after Ian Fleming died to see how difficult that effort is. The same holds true for the countless writers who wrote Sherlock Holmes pastiches. But, who knows, maybe Phil can hold lightning in a bottle again.

      Reply
  4. David Sisson

    I have to admit that while I hoped for a 34th book I really have no idea how the series would have gone forward, and only Mr Tubb would have had a proper idea.
    Now that the Cyclan know where Dumarest is it might actually be too dangerous to stay on Earth! However directly fighting the Cyclan has never been part of the format, while Dumarest has fought Cybers he does so only when cornered and tends to run from them. The organisation is simply too large for any one man, or band of men, to fight. I thought that the biggest threat to the Cyclan would only come from within, namely the spread of the diseased brains and then possibly the collapse of it’s mental based communication system.
    Now that Earth has been reached I think it would be very difficult for another writer to continue the series with the added complication of changing the whole direction of the concept.

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    1. george Post author

      There’s no doubt that continuing the Dumarest series is fraught with problems, David. But, Tubb left enough clues to point the way to possible plots. Finding the right writer to write more novels is the biggest hurdle.

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  5. doug

    i love the dumarest saga. it has enriched my life. i have read some of them 10 times or more. i am saddened by Ted’s passing. i hope to see him in heaven. mant authors leave notes and outlines, for future projects. maybe someone will find them and write book 34 similar to the way Mr. Tubb would have wanted it.

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  6. Grady Loy

    I have a series of links for reviews of each of the 33 books in the Dumarest series. The reviews are 900 words long, briefly describe the broad plot outlines, planets visited, ships ridden, damsels rescued, moral issue grappled with and clues to earth found or just missed plus the odd comment or analysis when there is still space for it. I won’t say the writing is fantastic but then the point is, after all, to read Tubb’s books themselves. These reviews are mainly intended for someone looking for a particular story, character or plot situatiion in the 33 books of the series. The links can be found at

    http://loy.lawyers-office.jp/1068.html

    Since they are intended primarily as reference, corrections and comments welcome. Best Regards

    Grady Loy

    Reply
  7. PHILIP HARBOTTLE

    Dear George,

    You and your readers may be interested to know that I am very close to finalizing a deal that will see more than a hundred of Tubb’s SF novels appearing as E-Books–including the entire Dunmarest series. Of his final two novels, “To Dream Again” (also to appear as an E-Book) will be published by Ulverscroft in August 2011. Fires of Satan is still under consideration. I’ll let you have more news when I have it.

    Reply
    1. george Post author

      This is wonderful news, Philip! I’m planning on buying an iPad in the Spring so E.C. Tubb ebooks will be at the top of my want list! Keep us in the loop!

      Reply
  8. PHILIP HARBOTTLE

    Dear George,

    The deal I mentioned, for 103 books (all of Tubb’s original SF novels) to be done as E-Books has now been contracted for (with Orion Books, here in the UK). They are to appear over the next 18 months. There’s also an option for a 3-novel regular paperback omnibus, but the 3 novels have yet to be chosen. I’m hoping they might include his final novel “Fires od Satan.”

    Reply
  9. Grady Loy

    I just posted a response to a post by Randy Johnson on his post regarding Mayenne without realizing he had posted here. My apologies to Randy for relating to him anything he already knew.

    Also I was wondering if I could ask Mr. Harbottle, wasn’t he instrumental in getting Mr. Tubb to extend the series back when it was at 10 books in the early 1970’s. I have that idea in mind somehow but do not actually know where I may ahve heard it or if it is accurate or not.

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  10. tanya

    hi all, i am looking for book number 32 in the dumarest saga- the return/return to terra, my step dad has all the other books and the last one, but this one is proving impossible to find….. please help!!!!

    Reply
    1. george Post author

      I’ve seen THE RETURN listed on ABE.COM from time to time, Tanya. A number of E. C. Tubb titles are going to be available as ebooks later this year. Maybe THE RETURN will be available in that format.

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    2. jan

      Hi Tanya,
      You where looking for book number 32 in the dumarest saga- the return/return to terra?
      Did you have one ore more in meantime?
      I myself am allso looking for the last missing book to coplete my series, it is number 32 the return/return to terra and was wondering if annyone would sel me a copy.
      Please contact me if there is a copy for sale (no E-book)

      Reply
  11. PHILIP HARBOTTLE

    Dear George,

    E.C.Tubb’s last completed novel, FIRES OF SATAN ( a major novel of asteroid Armageddon) has now been accepted by Orion Publishing (Gollancz). It will appear as part of a FOUR book paperback pmnibus (other three reprint titles yet to be chosen). These novels–along with ALL of Tubb’s 100-plus other sf novels (except Space 1999 series) will be appearing as E-Books from Orion in 2011. That includes ALL the Dumarest novels. I just sold French Rights to Child of Earth, and the Italians are continuing their four novelsd hardcover Dumarest omnibus books–fourth one out recently. His new short story collection THE WAGER has been out in US from Borgo for some time, and will appear in UK later. Further Borgo Tubb collections will follow, as I can find time. They will include some new unpublished short stories found in Tubb’s effects by his granddaughter anbd passed to me.

    I’ve been sorry tp note that none of your correspondents has bothered to get Tubb’s many vintage novels now out in UK, including unpublished new ones like STARSLAVE (a fantastic novel), and that your site seems to have withered and died because of apathy to anything not involving Dumarest. Their privilege, of course, but all your “Dumarest only” fans are missing out on great reading experiences. Not to worry–I shall continue to preserve Ted’s liteary legacy–there are plenty others who DO appreciate it.
    Best Regards,
    Phil

    Reply
    1. george Post author

      This is great news, Phil! I’m sure the ebook market for E.C. Tubb’s work will grow as all this non-SPACE 1999 work becomes available. I appreciate your efforts to keep Tubb’s work in-print. I, for one, enjoy Tubb’s non-Dumarest work. The man was a consummate pro.

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  12. David

    Phil – What Tubb needs is a website and forum of his own. It’s difficult to find
    out what is going on unless you stumble over this excellent site. If you
    had your own site for him, you could post regular updates and information
    would be far easier to find.

    I must get hold of ‘Starslave’. I’m sure that many folk appreciate your efforts.

    Reply
    1. george Post author

      I suspect that as most (or all) of E. C. Tubb’s work is available in ebook formats, there will be enough fan momentum to support a dedicated E. C. Tubb web site, David.

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  13. PHILIP HARBOTTLE

    I’ve today agreed that omnibus pb edition of Ted’s novels with Orion. In the event it will contain just three novels: An early work, THE EXTRA MAN (aka The Mechanical Monarch), THE SPACE BORN, and his last and finest work, FIRES OF SATAN (at 71,000 words his longest novel). David–the idea of a website is nice, but I certainly don’t have time to set it uo! Ted is not my only client–I have to look after many other veteran names, which keeps me mighty busy. The the idea would have my full support though–and I’d gladly supply news of upcoming new books–such as his latest collection THE MING VASE and other stories, upcomming from Borgo Books this Fall.
    Regards,

    Phil Harbottle

    Reply
    1. george Post author

      I’ll be buying that Orion omnibus edition, Phil! I have the ACE DOUBLE versions of THE MECHANICAL MONARCH and THE SPACE BORN, but I really want to read FIRES OF SATAN!

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  14. David

    Hello Phil. I’m not very technical, but I could set up a limited website to contain Tubb news from you,and a forum etc. How can I contact you?

    Reply
  15. PHILIP HARBOTTLE

    Dear David,

    If you are able to create an ECT website, feel free to contact me at pjhar@globalnet.co.uk when you’ve set it up, and I’ll try and supply you with some content that may interest Ted’s fans.
    FIRES OF SATAN is set “the day after tomorrow” when an asteroid is on a collision course with the Earth. The story unfolds through the eyes of the astronomer who discovers the impending danger, a somewhat flawed and very human individual. It’s gripping and poignant and the ending is one you won’t have seen coming. I think you’ll love it. George!

    Reply
  16. Len Jabb

    I have read the Dumarest series twice now and somewhere I missed reading why or how Earl got so fast. Was it ever explained?

    Reply
    1. george Post author

      Love David’s E. C. TUBB web site, Grady! And, I enjoyed reading your reviews of the Dumarest series. I’ll certainly be dropping in to check out the new material on a regular basis.

      Reply
  17. Craig

    Tubb explains (or perhaps better implies) part of the speed in Child of Earth. A mix of necessity as a kid, some training later and perhaps genetics. But he also seems to be keeping us in suspense about other possibilities – as was he was wont to do 🙂

    Reply
    1. george Post author

      Exactly, Craig. Tubb was great about implying and hinting. I had hoped for a climatic clash with the Cyclan in CHILD OF EARTH, but that seems to have been deferred for a future (now never to be written) novel.

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  18. Craig

    I’ve been rereading some of the FATE books and although they don’t have the quintessential Dumarest it’s certainly superb Golden Age SF

    Reply
  19. Andy Finkel

    I’m glad I finally got the chance to read the final Dumarest book here in the States. It’s an acceptable ending to the series, and I was glad to finally get it. (from Amazon, as a Kindle book, as the UK ePub booksellers won’t sell to US customers). I can’t help but wonder if E.C. Tubb had left any notes for the future direction of the series; definitely the final book changed the nature of the series; it seemed to me that Dumarest had finally decided to go to war with the Cyclan, now that he knew exactly (at long last) what was going on.

    Reply
    1. george Post author

      I agree with you, Andy. The final Dumarest volume definitely sets up a war with the Cyclan. Maybe some book outlines will surface about those novels all Dumarest fans would love to read!

      Reply
  20. Ali

    The writing is way too formulaic. Virtually every book repetitively discusses the Cyclan and the secret of the affinity twin. The dialogues with women are enough to make one cringe. The planets all seem to be the same — presumably same gravitational field, same atmosphere and similar biospheres. Each planet has its own identical Lowtown. The interstellar travel is entirely unconvincing. The plot lines are broadly the same. This really is pulp science fiction. The Dumarest series can’t hold a candle to the Dune series or the Conan series

    Reply
    1. george Post author

      There’s no doubt Tubb followed a template with the Dumarest series, Ali. But following a character searching for his home planet holds an irresistible appeal for some readers.

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  21. Phil

    I haven’t contributed to anything like this, but I must say I loved the Dumarest books and have them all. I also have to say I agree there was an element of formula, I mean how old was the character after all those adventures? (although he did worry about his age in one of the later books). But I think E.C. Tubb worked some great ideas out of the template and I for one saw many aspects of Dumarest’s quest as a metaphor for my own life as I travelled. I bought Veruchia in a bargain sale at a Woolworths when I was a teenager and hunted the other books down after that. I read Earthfall (a giant Space 1999 novel) many years ago too and in that Tubb hinted at strange things that had hapenned to a post apocalyptic Earth that he could have explored, and I am sure he had similar ideas for the Post Quest Dumarest Saga on Earth.

    What would these have been? Human resistance to the Cyclan of course. Myriad factions to explore. The Universal Church on Earth – or if not, why not? What really did drive humans away? Was Dumarest unique in being so fast? The Cyclan are there of course and the likelihood is their crest was actually a representation of the Earth – hinted at in book one. The potential is limitless; has Dumarest any family back home could be an idea to explore. Its a real pity E.C. Tubb didn’t get to write them, but what we have is good to have. I know that effort to re-boot Tarzan by other writers never worked well, but I think a ‘new’ Dumarest saga could be done. I don’t think it was ever as popular as some cult figures, but in this day and age people don’t need to worry about costs of publishing, kindle has shown that. However I treasure my yellowing Dumarest books!

    The real skill to a reboot would be to copy E.C. Tubbs witing style (look at the masses of badly written Conan books compared to R.E. Howard’s colourful and darkly sinister style). For without a doubt Mr Tubb was master of English – even if a ‘pulp’ writer (which I would dispute).

    You would need a writer with ideas (lots and lots) and maybe even do what they did when they re-booted a bloke called Bond and had a panel to vet stories (after all thats how blockbuster movies get done). Most of all to recognbose less is more in the hnads of a good writer (as Mr Tubb proved effortlessly it seems, and probably wasn’t)

    Wow, I even feel I’d like to give it a go myself! But E.C. Tubb is a hard act to follow, but if someone like Eric van Lustbader can take on Bourne, maybe one or several writers could take on the mantle of Dumarest. The trick would be to say ‘no’ to anything that doesn’t match up. Otherwise you end up with piles of dross (like what hapenned to the Destroyer series or even Sherlock Holmes where you have him meeting Dracula!).

    Anyway, I for one will maintain my enthusaism for these books until I sign off myself, and who knows, maybe I’ll get the chance to meet Mr Tubb in Valhalla and ask him to tell me more about the adventures of Earl Dumarest.

    Phil

    Reply
    1. george Post author

      Excellent posting, Phil! Clearly you have the enthusiasm for the Dumarest series that most of us here share. In wild moments of fantasy, I’ve considered writing a Dumarest novel based on the many speculations you list. After all, there’s plenty of fan writing for the Harry Potter series online. But the stumbling block, which you also mention, is that E.C. Tubb was a crafty writer. I’m not sure many writers could duplicate his deceptively crisp style. But, as you also point out, we have 30+ Dumarest novels to enjoy and fellow readers with whom to share our thoughts and feelings.

      Reply
  22. Grady

    Agree with Phil and that is also why I said a couple of years ago I saw something kind of Greek and poetic in Dumarest’s search. The Odyssey expresses great beauty in an intentionally formulaic poetic format. Interestingly, and I think this is where I saw something deeper in the Dumarest series. Tubb was in good company of course, James Joyce and others have relied on that as a template, but I increasingly feel that Tubb wrote the Dumarest series that way intentionally. At Mr. Harbottle’s suggestion I have started ordering and reading other Tubb titles. Notably, Omphalos, the Ming Vase, his best science fiction collection (these latter from his earlier efforts) and a western (The Gold Seekers) and I am waiting for a mystery novel of his to arrive. What was extraordinary was that even from a very early period he was capable of managing diversity not only of genres but of writing styles. The Gold Seekers was a lot silkier in its writing than the Dumarest series. It was not an entirely typical western in that the character’s 19th century frontier brogue, though faithfully recreated to a degree was not as intense either as among American pulp author’s novels or indeed the people who actually inhabited the west prior to building the Interstate. One reason is that his fans were initially British and he wanted the book to be accessible enough to be pleasant and another was that his dialogue was, I realized later, rather nicely keyed to the cinematic westerns of that period (1955). There was a Dumarest like character (Mark – another of Tubb’s favorite character names – I have noted the same tendency in the prolific Dean Koontz to have favored character names) but he was a former confederate captain who had lost family and lands in Sherman’s march to the sea. He must get a wagon train of mixed gold seekers and farmers across the Arizona/Nevada deserts, past the Apache and over the Sierras and live up to the expectations of the young wagon train boy who looks up to him. Tubb acquitted himself honorably. The science fiction stories were varied but all were based on the idea of a technically advanced yet dystopic future. He varied in style succesfully – the stories were all very readable -between sensitive first person narratives and hard boiled third person accounts more reminiscent of Dumamarest. He even used the name Dumarest in a story about an old man who waited at the spaceport on the moon for a son who would never return. He was the shipmate of the man who regretfully narrated the story and who had years before killed the old man’s son and taken his money to get off planet. There was a great variety in the stories, time travel, industrial espionage, a cold war thriller with ESP, aliens breeding humans to become superior beings and culling the unfit. There was even a very beautifu story about a man who threw away his own future and chance of regeneration and long life to travel back in time to live as a stranger and to care for the father he had abandoned so that he would not die alone. One thing I learned that I had not intuited from Dumarest. Tubb pointed out that these vendetta soaked, disorganized dazzlingly diverse dispotpias that form the back drop of earth (Renaissance Italy or the 12 century BC Aegean come to mind) actually were sort of an optimal state for mankind. It was this sort of world that produced Dumarest and made him the magnificent character that he was. He would never have reached th

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  23. Grady

    the heights he attained had he never set foot in the ring or had to fight to survive as he did just as the world of the Torjan war with its uncertainties and challenges forged Oddyseus. It seems to me Tubb was more interested in people than societies and in character than culture. There was indeed one story from the Ming Vase collection that gives a little insight into Dumarest – The name of the story was “Trojan Horse” and it came out in 1963. At the end the hero, a sort of Dumaresty character as all Tubb’s heros tended to be, destroyed an invention that would allow vast social control and restore order and stability to a scoeity that had thrown it off in a revolution. His words: The villain “They had respect in those days, respect for authority.” and the hero Marlo “And why the hell should they have had. What did authority ever do for them? It lkept them poor. It kept them under. To hell with authority. This is a free world and I want it kept that way.” the villain “So you can go around killing? A man with a gun and no brain? Someone who shoots down others for pay? For that what you call living in a free world?” Marlo kills the villain who had had the drop in him and the story ends “To bury forever a bad old world” Now I do not think Mr. Tubb was countenancing carrying on assassination as a trade but his theme at least in literature was that almost anything was more endurable than being deprived of ones freedom to find and then choose to live in one’s own way.

    Reply
    1. george Post author

      Excellent post, Grady! I’ve read some non-Dumarest novels by E. C. Tubb and enjoyed them. The intriguing difference between Dumarest’s quest to find Earth and Ullysses’ quest to arrive home is that the Universe seemingly has forgotten where Earth is! Hopefully, in this digital age, all writers will have their works available as ebooks. I can’t imagine a finer tribute to the writers of the past than to have ALL their works available to future generations of readers.

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  24. Grady

    Have we lost David’s website. http://www.ectubb.org.uk/ I admit I had not posted in a while though I had a couple of summaries and commentaries on other Tubb stories, none of the with quite the charm of the Dumarest Saga but quite good nonetheless. Well if it truly has gone down it was nice to have while it lasted. I wonder if there is an alternative site for Tubb works generally?

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  25. Philip Harbottle

    Dear George,

    And so I came back…
    I must admit that I’d assumed your website had long since been discontinued. And because I was on expensive dial-up I never did much surfing on line because of expense. More recently, however, I bought a new pc and also switched to broadband. Tonight I thought I’d just check out your old website, because I have information I think might interest you and some of your regulars like Grady. And I ws deigted to find your site still up and running 9as at October anyway…hope this reaches you.
    My news is this: Ted’s very last novel, FIRES OF SATAN, which I flagged up two years ago to you, has at last been published by Orion (Gollannz) as a UK paperback this week: It’s part of a trilogy (over 400 pages) I selected to be a sort of “Best of” his novels over the decades. THE EXTRA MAN (AKA Enterprise 2115 and The Mechanical Monarch; THE SPACE BORNE, and the longest and best story) FIRES OF SATAN, never before published. hisgrand daughters emailed it to me just weeks before Ted died. I believe a separate e-edition of this was actually available last year. The book has a nice intro by no less than John Clute, and I did a preface for THE EXTRA MAN.

    You might also enjoy Ted latest collectionof short stories from Borgo books (Wildside) available as US pod pb and e-book, ONLY ONE WINNER. This book uniquely contains a “lost” typescript of Ted’s 1970 World SF Convention Guest of Honour speech in Germany (Heicon). Ted speaks from the heart about what he thinks SF stands for. No Tubb fan should miss it.

    And yet more news: I sold audio rights to Dumarest to John Betancourt and he has arranged for them to appear as Audio Books from audible.com. The first three titles just came out and they are SUPERB. Utterly superb–unabridged, over tree hours long, and the actor narrating it does a fine job.

    PS Note to Grady. Glad you took my advice to cxplore Ted’s other works–I loved your insightful comments. But TROJAN HORSE was not published in 1963; it appeared in my own magazine VISION OF TOMORROW in 1970. Ted wrote it specially for me. and it’s been anthologized a few times since.
    Any PROFESSIONAL writer wanting to continue Dumarest should get in touch with me as agent for the estate.

    Best Regards,

    Phil

    Reply
    1. george Post author

      Philip, great to have you back with such great news. I will order THE EXTRA MAN and ONLY ONE WINNER. Those audiobook versions of the first three Dumarest novels tempt me, too!

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  26. Grady Loy

    Dear George and Phil:

    Apologies for the incorrect information about the Trojan Horse. I apparently misread the copyright date for the Mjng Vase in the anthology where I found it and the correct information is of course as Phil said. I hope to try to pick up a few more paperbacks off of the used book market (I don’t know but I think I may have got the new anthologies covered by this point by I suspect that is only a relatively small part of the total). I will post reviews on Shvoong (though I admit I have a backlog having only posted reviews of Omphalos and the Gold Seekers in addition to Dumarest so far. Mr Tubbs science fiction and mysteries from the anthologies I have still to write posts for) I am trying to figure out how to get a better profile for the posts so they get searched and read. My posts are not probably up to snuff as high level reviews but mainly just a way of putting a few words about some of these long ago gems in an accessible place. For the Dumarest novels I have seen the most interest for the final 3 and the first 7 or so. My list of posts of the Dumarest novels is not the only one out there though I think I go into greater depth particularly with the later novels.

    Reply
    1. george Post author

      Grady, I appreciate the update! GATEWAY has the Dumarest series available as ebooks. There’s a print omnibus volume in the works, too.

      Reply
  27. Phil Dodshon

    I know this is a cheek, but here is a possible start for a new chapter in the life of Earl Dumarest;

    Chapter One

    It was a carmine dawn that formed a backdrop to long striated clouds when Conos rolled out of bed and dressed quickly, his breath pluming away. Stepping outside he came onto their platform come veranda made of good solid oak. His wife and two daughters remained buried under their thick wool blankets in the sprawling wooden trading post that was their home. The wind soughed into and also past him with the cold chill of the distant icecap, while their wind turbine clanked away erratically like a skeleton in a bucket.

    He was black of skin, and in his youth had been tall and strong from a race of warriors long, long ago in another time and place that most men had forgotten about. But he was also biologically ill suited to a cold climate, and a sedentary life had caused him to grow rotund.

    Chickens scrabbled around his feet as he draped a sheepskin coat over rough working clothes and slumped in a chair with a cup of hot tisane. He lived on the only high point for thirty miles in each direction. He could see the shimmer of morning sunlight on the broad Wander River as it slithered through marshland before dropping off a cliff edge into the vastness of Twisted Valley. The Guild chose this location for him because it was easier for trappers and those who lived on the ice caps to find them and do business.

    However his neighbours were a half days walk away, and on some mornings the cold and lonely monotony of life clawed alongside despair in his thoughts. He stared without really looking at the bleak landscape of grass with a few stunted trees, and herds of distant yaks that nomads maintained. They were his chief customers nowadays, but had little of value to trade with. Once again he wondered about the whims of fate that brought him here. It was a familiar diatribe in his head at the injustices of the world.

    The landscape he surveyed with sour eyes blurred away many miles distant into a few half hearted attempts at hills, and then was lost in the haze of distant mountains. A day’s march further south and the ground began to be enfolded in patches of ice and permafrost started. Then you reached the sea, and the vast coating of the icecap that lay south of the two islands.

    Conos was a Hausi, part of a respected guild of traders and negotiators, and a people that once covered the galaxy. Maybe many still did. But Earth was a prescribed world, and no one came here to speak of the fate of humanity in the stars.

    He frowned suddenly, thinking he had seen some movement in a fold of grassland, knowing feral packs sometimes came this way. The yaks would spit them on their horns, but they might be heading into the valley where smaller animals lived in a place of comparative warmth and shelter. Some had even been known to attack the people eking out a living down there. I may need to send a warning, if the damned com system works today. Ancient equipment and regular solar flares through a ruinous magnetic field made communications difficult.

    But no, what he saw lacked the surging movement of pack animals, and he waited, listening as his wife and daughters stirred awake with many complaints. This particular winter has been a long one, he mused, with little to distract them. The sun rose higher into a grey sky, and as the light improved he realised it was a man carrying a pack. It was surely too early for a trapper, and especially one coming out of the Ice Fields in Spring. Well, at the very least his appearance would ease the boredom.

    He was a tall and strong man, and moved with a cat like grace that spoke of coiled strength which was husbanded and not squandered. A man who disciplined himself with an inner strength. He was wrapped in animal furs and scraps of cloth protected his face, but beneath this he had tough clothing of grey material over his body. He carried a stone spear in one hand in a mitten, and there was a large knife tucked into one boot.

    He carried a large pack laden with furs, and Conos felt a surge of excitement at the chance to buy and sell, for he was struggling to survive these days. Fewer men went into the Ice Lands to trade with the goods he sold and return. Even less could trap the vicious animals there and come back, for surviving there was hard, and the locals cared little for visitors. To do so in winter meant this was an exceptional man standing before him.

    He drew back his hood to reveal a face that was lean and hard, belonging to someone who survived without guild or tribe or even freinds. A man who relied only on himself. His eyes were appraising and held no weakness, and were those of someone it was best not to cross or cheat. He wore a medallion on a leather thong made of etched bone that marked him down as a friend of the Free Tribes. There was a story to be told there, if he would share it.

    ‘Greetings,’ said Conos as the man gratefully slid the pack off his back, heavy with gronnam and wellminth fur, and clearly of much value. ‘Welcome to Valley Trading Post. I see you have had a long and hard journey. Food and drink will be provided,’ he clapped his hands, and his plump and colourfully dressed wife appeared and looked the stranger over with interest. Then she dragged his young daughters away with an insolent swing of her hip for the strangers attention. Soon sounds came from the kitchen, and the youngest daughter came out with two mugs of hot chocolate. It was a rare treat, and Cronos realised his wife Kelarnim must really like the look of the stranger.

    She’s like bitch on heat when she goes into Raw Town, he thought sourly, always putting me down because I’m not a grafter or a fighter. This one could be either, especially with that knife. He has the look of one who knows how to use it. But he smiled and patted his daughters head (at least he hoped she was his daughter), and raised his steaming mug in a form of salute, ‘I am Conos of the Hausi Traders.’

    ‘Thank you,’ his voice was deep and strong, ‘my name is Hart.’

    ‘Well then Hart, you seem to have done well in the Ice Lands.’

    ‘I made friends,’ he said with a wry understatement, ‘it made it easier to get around and hunt.’

    ‘But you are not from here?’

    ‘You mean Earth?’ he raised an eyebrow, and there was flicker of something on his face, an emotion hidden for a moment.

    ‘No,’ Conos smiled, ‘of course you are from Earth, I meant East Tartica, how came you here?’

    For a while he did not answer, and Conos wondered if he was angered. ‘If my words offend you, please accept my apologies.’

    ‘No offence was taken,’ he said, ‘I was just debating whether to tell you my story. My ship crashed down from orbit onto the ice,’ explained the stranger, watching him carefully. ‘I left the area on a raft with a friend, and we agreed to meet later. He did not return, and I assume he died.

    ‘Surely you jest,’ Conos laughed, ‘a ship from space, not one belonging to the Cyclan?’ Then his face froze as he tried to hide a gamut of emotions, and failed. ‘You’re him, aren’t you? The one the Cyclan are hunting; Earl Dumarest.’

    Conos took him to a study room, a place he called his retreat away from the women, with books and old pictures. The walls were, like the rest of the trading post, were made of rough hewn wooden posts shipped here from further north on Westward River. Pleasant hangings added colour to the place and softened the austerity of the room. Furniture was plain and stout, with soft sheepskin coverings. There was a yak dung fire burning, casting a warm glow in the gloom. A few electric lights were working casting an ambient glow.

    ‘We can speak here without fear of being overheard,’ he said, and walked to an old music system of cannibalised parts, and flicked a switch. ‘This is Mozart, an ancient musician, or so some say.’

    ‘I have never heard of him,’ said the stranger.

    ‘Then you are not from Earth?’

    ‘I am from Earth!’ he said with a sudden energy that stunned Conos, and he half rose out of the chair for a moment. Then he gave a slight gesture by way of apology, and sat back down. ‘I’m sorry, but I have battled my way across the entire galaxy to get home.’

    ‘Amazing,’ he murmured, ‘but how did you come to leave here?’

    ‘I stowed away on a ship when young, a Free Trader that had no business being on Earth. Instead of evicting me the Captain let me stay, and I worked on the ship to earn my keep. We travelled to where there was a profit to be made, eventually finding ourselves far from here, at the crowded centre of the galaxy. It is a place where men and their planets are close and plentiful, while the name Earth is one of legend and the co-ordinates unknown.’

    ‘Yet you found your way back?’

    ‘It was not easy,’ he said, his face a mask hiding the pain and anguish as he remembered the hard years that lay behind him; women he had loved and left or lost, friends also left behind or dead. Truly death had followed him like a shadow for many years. ‘My obsession drove me across millions of light years through many dangers, to finally get here. Home.’

    ‘Well then Earl, I salute you with a glass of voskos,’ Conos opened a bottle of clear spirit and poured two generous helpings into chipped glasses, ‘what a story yours would make! A saga worthy of the ancient heroes of Earth who are no more.’

    ‘Are they not?’

    ‘I fear we are all sheep here my friend,’ said Conos, ‘the Cyclan harvest us for our organs from their vast fortress deep below the Saranas Desert. They rule the planet, or it can be said they are top dogs of the various factions scrabbling to survive in the various areas of Earth. The others, to be honest, are mostly ignored by the Cyclan, and much of Earth is a place of wilderness or wasteland. After the Cyclan the most dangerous are the Warlords who raid from their airships and take our children and women as slaves, while in many places men fight against alien horrors unleashed on Earth centuries ago.’

    ‘I heard some of this from the Free Tribes,’ said Dumarest, sipping the drink cautiously; not that he thought it poisoned, but it had a raw taste that spoke of crude distillation. But it also warmed him, and he felt the aches of cold in his bones easing, and also the tensions and stresses of the last few months.

    ‘Well then,’ Cronos smiled thinly, ‘perhaps you now wonder if it was worth coming all the way across the galaxy to be here?’

    ‘It is my home,’ said Dumarest, a simple statement but one that meant a lot to him, that had driven him and given his life purpose for many years. ‘Now explain to me what your words meant; you’re him, aren’t you?’

    ‘Very well,’ said Conos, ‘a raft from the Cyclan came here some months ago, and others have also visited other places on East Tartica. Few people have rafts, the anti grav units are expensive and the metals needed hard to find. The Cyclan wanted word of you, and offered much money, and even more if you were captured alive. Dead, you were worthless. That tells me you are someone of value, or someone they fear.’

    ‘Why didn’t you stay quiet and claim the bounty on me then?’ asked Dumarest quietly.

    ‘Because I hate them,’ snarled Conos as his eyes flashed with anger, ‘they are evil machines, incapable of emotion, and the atrocities they carry out on us -’ he shuddered. ‘If only someone would stand up to them and stop them grinding humans underfoot,’ he continued, ‘but it will not be me, I am no hero, I dare not even stand up to my wife!’

    ‘Does anyone fight them?’

    ‘They say that some do,’ shrugged Conos, ‘in Usland, on the other side of the planet, and maybe still in Safriclah. The say Uroper also showed courage after Armageddon and defied them, but the Cyclan annihilated the continent. Maybe some people yet survive and battle on? But I fled Safriclah when a young man to escape the constant problems with the Cyclan, who took my friend,’ his jaw clenched, ‘they also killed my parents, only my sister and I escaped with others on a boat to here. It was a hard journey across the Irdian Ocean, a place of monsters and tentacled horrors.’

    ‘You have had some luck then.’

    ‘All bad,’ he said.

    ‘You are alive and have a living,’ said Dumarest, ‘I have seen Lowtowns where many truly know what despair is.’

    ‘I suppose that may be true, but its human nature perhaps to want what you cannot have.’

    ‘Like finding my home planet Earth?’ said Dumarest in a quiet voice, ‘but if you want something badly enough, I believe you can get it.’

    ‘Perhaps so,’ said Conos, ‘but then is such a thing worth having? A question best left to philosophers, perhaps. But you have come back to a planet ruined by The Cyclan, who were responsible for the nuclear winter that lasted fifty years many long centuries ago.’ He leant forward, ‘please believe me Earl when I say I would never betray anyone to them. We are far from their main base here, and these are large islands. You can stay hidden from their hunters.’

    At that moment they were called to eat. The food was freshly baked bread and a stew, mainly vegetables with some stringy meat in it, but well seasoned with herbs to make it flavoursome. Dumarest ate eagerly, having subsisted on dried meat or blubber for many months now.

    His wife fussed over Dumarest, bending low in her dress to show off her wares. He ignored her subtle offer and was polite in his compliments to her cooking. Their daughters watched him from the door of the kitchen, a rare visitor, and giggled in childish fashion.

    They were sat outside on the veranda at a table and chairs, for there was a hint of summer in the air, its caress pleasant after weeks of thick clothing. Once finished Conos led Dumarest to his store, a large room full of many useful items. There were ceramic knives and crossbows, fishing equipment, farming tools, traps and clothing that allowed you to work and survive in the Ice Lands. There were also dried and tinned foods, maps, compasses and even a few luxuries for those who lived nearby in the sheltered valley.

    ‘A few times a year the Hausi replenish my stock,’ said Conos, ‘and once or twice a year I go to Raw Town or even Northrom City on the coast to sell any furs I buy.’

    ‘What profit do you make?’ asked Dumarest.

    ‘Fifteen percent,’ he said honestly, and held up his hands as Dumarest raised his eyebrows, ‘but even so your share will be a good one, about seven thousand terros, a man can live like a Lord for a year on that, or more modestly for three or four years.’

    No more High or Middle, travellers currency, thought Dumarest, ‘is the terro a local currency?’

    ‘No, it is recognised in most places on Earth.’

    ‘But I could travel on from here myself to sell the furs,’ Dumarest pointed out.

    ‘Of course,’ said the Hausi imperturbably, ‘but the road is long and hard and dangerous; some trappers have tried that and are murdered for their furs. That is one of the reasons my guild built this place. Your best option is to take a credit chip from me, keyed to your thumbprint. It is worthless to anyone else. Also I suggest you take the airship from Twisted Valley, the journey is quicker and safe. Once in Raw Town you can vanish into the crowds, and go wherever you want to go,’ his words stopped on an interrogative.

    ‘That’s the problem,’ said Dumarest with a wry smile, ‘for the first time in many years I’m not sure where I do want to go.’

    ‘Conos!’

    It was Kelarnim calling with an urgent note, and they went to the door and saw a raft heading their way up to them from Twisted Valley.

    ‘The Cyclan?’ asked Dumarest, his face a sudden mask of hate and anger as he thought of the weapons in the store.

    ‘No,’ Conos shook his head, ‘the design is of one belonging to the Guardsmen, the nearest thing we have to a police or army. They are a rabble, for these islands are wild and the Lord Aahnoy cares little for us. But I am not expecting them.’ He stepped forward, waving casually and wearing a smile, as the raft closed on them and settled in the front of Valley Trading Post with a rattling hum. Clearly the vehicle was not in optimum shape.

    Kelarnin took the children inside, and then came back as two men got out of the raft. They had tough faces and cropped, greying hair, dressed in olive combat fatigues that showed signs of much use, carrying jabsticks in holsters. The tall one had a holstered handgun, a sign of rank, the other was a fat man who sported a machete in a holster slung across his back. They both eyed Dumarest speculatively, glancing at his pack propped against the wall.

    ‘Sergeant Kevros,’ Conos nodded to the tall one, ‘Officer Padrom,’ another nod at the fat one, ‘what brings you here?’

    ‘Just a routine call,’ said Kevros, ‘we’ve had some problem from gypsies in the valley, and are just checking you’re okay.’ He was chewing on some tobacco, and looked openly at Dumarest now, his face suspicious, ‘who are you, friend?’

    ‘Hart Vardoon,’ he said, using the name of someone he once knew on the far off planet of Sacaweena.

    ‘A trapper,’ said Conos, almost too eager to explain. Subterfuge was not something that came naturally to him.

    ‘Your face looks familiar,’ said Kevros.

    Padrom took his insolent gaze away from Kelarnim’s breasts, and also looked at Dumarest, ‘say, he does look familiar.’ Dumarest felt his stomach muscles tighten; it was possible the Cyclan had distributed pictures of him. ‘But from where?’ frowned Padrom, ‘years ago, wasn’t it?’

    ‘Yes, far from here,’ agreed Kevros.

    ‘I have it!’ Padrom clicked his fingers, ‘those Augments we saw in the Saranas Desert.’

    ‘Of course,’ said Kevros, nodding slowly, ‘he could be one of them, he looks just like them, in fact.’

    ‘What is an Augment?’ asked Conos, rubbing his hands nervously.

    ‘They are men the Cyclan use, soldiers, very deadly they say,’ said Kevros as he continued to eyeball Dumarest, ‘although we avoided getting into a fight with them. Now what would one of them be doing here in East Tartica?’

    ‘The Cyclan are no friends of mine,’ said Dumarest, with real hatred clawing at the back of his throat.

    ‘No?’ Kevros smiled, not caring one way or the other, enjoying some private game in his head now. ‘Well I think we need to take you to Raw Town to answer a few questions, what say you, Pardom?’

    ‘Yes, you can’t be too careful these days,’ there was an undercurrent in his voice, laughter and something else, a dark anticipation perhaps. ‘Better take his furs with us too.’

    ‘No,’ said Conos decisively, ‘they stay here; he has agreed to sell to me and I will give him a credit chip.’

    ‘You’re a greedy man,’ said Kevros, ‘you have no idea how poor my pay is as a Guardsman. Anyway, this one doesn’t look like a trapper to me; he might have murdered one and taken those furs for all we know.’

    ‘That is nonsense,’ said Conos, ‘it is you who want to rob him.’

    ‘Don’t talk to me like that,’ said Kevros, spitting out the wad of tobacco in the direction of Conos, ‘a man like you, all alone out here needs to keep his friends, doesn’t he?’

    ‘Sure does,’ laughed Pardrom, ‘be a shame to leave his wife a widow.’

    ‘Reckon she’d be glad to see us though, eh?’ said Kevros, ‘the stories were hear about her,’ he snickered for a moment, and then his face hardened. ‘The furs come with us as evidence,’ he smiled nastily at Conos, ‘okay?’

    ‘It’s not okay with me,’ said Dumarest, his level voice holding a deadly certainty that should have acted as a warning to anyone with more intelligence. ‘As you were told I have already sold them to Conos. I am nothing to do with the Cyclan. I suggest you leave here.’

    ‘Well now, that’s not very friendly,’ said Kevros, ‘not friendly at all, and refusing to do as you’re told by a Guardsman. Very bad. Resisting arrest in fact, a man can get hurt, real bad.’ His hand dropped down to his holster and the gun, his eyes eager to cause pain, to maim and even kill sadistically, ‘now you kneel on the floor with your hands behind your back.’

    Dumarest knew these men would most likely kill him and steal the furs, and leave his body to be gnawed by ferals down to the bone in a few hours. Nor did he care for the way they eyed Kelarnim. He had no choice but to fight.

    ‘Very well,’ he slouched and lowered himself as though about to kneel. His hand dropped to his boot and came up holding nine inches of razor sharp steel that came to a sharp point.

    Kevros reacted quickly and had drawn his gun but before he could aim it properly Dumarest had already thrown his knife across twenty feet of earth. It slammed into an eye and the brain beneath. Dumarest turned and ran straight at the fat one, Pardrom, who seemed momentarily stunned by what had happened and was struggling to draw his machete.

    The edge of Dumarest’s hand hit his carotid on the left side, the impact confusing the baroreceptors and causing him to feel faint and weak. That bought time for a flurry of strikes and kicks that sent him to the floor, before he finished him off with his own machete, severing his head.

    ‘By God Earl!’ gasped Conos, ‘you were a blur; I’ve never seen anyone move so fast!’

    ‘But this is terrible,’ wailed Kelarnim, ‘others will find them and the raft here.’

    ‘Animals will eat them,’ said Dumarest, ‘and I will fly the raft and their bodies out of here.’ But she shook her head, wailing slightly. ‘Listen to me Kelarnim,’ said Dumarest, ‘I know these type of men, they were scum who would have slit your children’s throats, murdered your husband and stolen all you have in portable wealth. But first they would have raped and killed you.’

    ‘He saved us,’ said Conos, and after a moment Kelarnim nodded agreement slowly, ‘you could see they came here for trouble,’ continued Cronos, ‘looking for any excuse to kill and steal. I wonder how often others got the blame for their actions?’

    ‘Now go get me that credit chip,’ said Dumarest, ‘then I’ll get away from here and dispose of the bodies. After that I’ll maybe head to Northrom City, and then, well maybe Safriclah and the mystery of the Augments that looked like me.’

    Reply
    1. wendy murray

      Dear Phil,
      I have just read your chapter.
      It was a bit strange to start with , as obviously the writing style is different. By the end of the chapter I was enjoying it and most dissappointed when it ended. Are you planning to finish it ?

      Reply
  28. Sully

    I originally bought the ACE Double of Kalin and Bane Of Kanthos. The funny part is I bought it for the Bane of Kanthos. Little did I know what I was getting into after I decided to read Kalin because I found myself stuck in the house on a bad weather day. That was in 1970 or 71. I then found out it was series, started haunting used bookstores for the older copies and was happy as hell when new ones began to be published. I followed the series faithfully until they stopped comong out in1985. I didn’t even know about the 1997 publication until around 2003 or 04. Fast forward few years and then I find out about the 2008 novel around 2010. I succeeded n getting my hands on both copies.
    Don’t ask me what I paid for them……..
    Getting back to the last published book, I always felt that it was going to turn out that earth was where the Cyclan had their secret brain depository.
    Now it looks like I’ll never find out unless there’s an unfinished manuscript ofr an outline laying around somewhere.

    Still, it was a great run while it lasted.

    Reply
    1. Steve

      Sully and George, I met Ted Tubb a few times back in the 70s in a pub called the One Tun, and he used to say that the brains / Cyclan HQ were not on Earth but in a low (or lower) gravity environment. Unfortunately I don’t remember for sure any more what he said when I said OK the Moon then! But, already back then it was not going to be the Earth.

      Reply
  29. Steve

    I enjoyed Phil Dodshon’s chapter one. He has clearly mastered Tubb’s writing style – even down to the variable spelling
    of Conos/Cronos!

    Reply
      1. Phil

        Hi, I rushed that Chapter off in a surge of amateur writers enthusiasm and didn’t get a spellchecking crony to have a look! I found I had got rid of (or had I?) the character of the Doctor at the end of the final book and wanted to go back to the idea of a lone Dumarest appearing , but realised that if anyone does write sequels it will have to be a different style, with Dumarest gathering allies and building roots, not loving and leaving on his quest for Earth. My ideas thought about Earth saw a planet that was damned hazardous, with warring factions and strange creatures from across the galaxy. Also, a new writer needs to explain Dumarest’s phenomenal speed – my suggestion is he was a part of a Cyclan breeding programme to that was somehow compromised and he was liberated when very young. Ironic really that their worse enemy could have been their own creation! I think there is scope for a tightly written trilogy where he unites Earth, destroys the Cyclan and has a happy ending (maybe!) to wrap things up better. I am sure Mr Tubb had more ideas then maybe three books, but if anyone picks up the gauntlet it would need to avoid the dreadful lethargy of the new Dune novels and bring things to an ending that would have pleased him.

      2. george Post author

        Phil, I completely agree with your analysis! The Dune sequels lack the mysticism and tone of the original Frank Herbert books.

  30. Steve

    I have just reread Derai for the umpteenth time and the first name of the trader
    Dakarti varies between Scruto and Scuto. It was then I thought the variable
    spelling of Jim’s Conos was a subtle and deliberate homage to my favourite author.
    If I remember rightly, Web Of Sand also contains variable spellings.
    Changing the subject, before Derai I read the large print version of Gath
    which contains differences to The Winds of Gath which I bought in the 1970s.
    Gone are both the telepathic animals of Gath and mention of the origin of
    Homochon elements. Also the confrontation with Dyne at the end is different.
    As this version was published in 2010, perhaps Ted revised it to bring it
    more in line with later developments.

    Reply
  31. Wolf Böhrendt

    Hi everybody!

    I’m an old fan of Ted Tubb and the Dumarest saga (literally – I’m over 70 s) and after some searching I stumbled on this site which seems (almost) the only one dedicated to Dumarest – which is a shame really.
    I’ll be reading all the comments and then I’ll be back with some remarks and questions.

    wolfi

    Reply
  32. Wolf Böhrendt

    Thank you, George!
    I just remember a funny story about Ted:

    I didn’t go to conventions very often (was too busy working) but I visited the Eastercon in Brighton at the Metropole Hotel in 1984 (or was that 1983?) – because I couldn’t afford a room I took my little van and slept in it for the first two nights. Then some people left and rooms got cheaper so I rented one and could take a shower at last …
    I had my list of SF books with me in a binder (printed with a mainframe computer from punched cards) and went around showing it to everybody (authors, editors) and asked them to sign it.
    Once I stumbled on Ted and Ken Bulmer sitting there and when I showed them the list Ken remarked to Ted something like:
    You’ve also written a lot of stuff – can’t call me a hack because I have so many books under different names, you did the same …
    They had a lot of fun signing not only with their real names but also signing with all their pseudonyms (that I had written in my list) like Gregory Kern, King Lang – Tully Zetford etc …
    There even was a discussion about “Roy Sheldon” which I had put down as Ted’s alias but he told me it was a house name used by other authors too.
    We also had room parties, smoked some weed and I offered the German beer that I had brought with me …

    Reply
  33. Fiona

    I have cheekily started a Facebook page dedicated to Ted and Dumarest

    https://www.facebook.com/Dumarest-of-Terra-628536840582908/timeline/

    I don’t know if anyone would like to pop over, take a look and get it kick-started? Maybe it won’t work, and I definitely don’t want to takeaway from what George has got going here ( a forum I love coming back to and reading time and time again).

    I have never started an FB page like this before and really don’t know what to expect!

    Reply
  34. Philip Harbttle

    Dear George,
    You might be interested to learn that I have just sold a film and TV series option on all 33 Dumarest novels. “Option” doesn’t mean it will actually get made, but the producers behind it are experienced professionals with a good track record in TV series and films, so there’s a very good chance. Also optioned by two different Hollywood producers are Ted’s one-off novels DEATH IS A DREAM and THE STAR BORN. Plus, his classic short story LUCIFER is actually in development right now.
    Meanwhile, I continue to put together brand new collections of Ted’s short stories and novelettes–over a dozen have been published psthumously, and more are being published this year, and more are in development. Sadly, I see that none of them, nor his SEVERAL posthumous new novels (everything Ted wrote is now in print) have merited a single mention amongst your followers, nor even an iterant Amazon reviewer. It saddens me that fans of Dumarest seem content to wallow in the past and reread the saga, whilst deliberately ignoring the vast treasure house of his huge portfolio of other work. Their loss!
    Best Regards,
    Phil

    Reply
    1. george Post author

      Philip, this is great news! The Dumarest Saga always seemed cinematic to me. What wonderful adventures! I’ll try to review some of E.C. Tubb’s other work in the next few weeks!

      Reply
  35. Sully

    So Phil,
    I was wondering, any chance of some unpublished Malkar stories cropping up? I’d love to have some good Sword & Sorcery/Heroic Fantasy to read by Tubb rather than just ‘wallowing’ in the past with all the other Dumarest fans here.

    Reply
  36. Craig Herbertson

    Very moving.
    I’m not sure that there’s a writer out there with the narrative skill to do justice to the great man’s work. I was forced to buy the entire Cap Kennedy series which is diffcult to obtain in the UK just to appease the need. I often dwell on the injustice of the publishing house dropping the Dumarest series in favour of lesser writers. Think I’ll have to reread the whole seres again for the nth time.

    Reply
    1. george Post author

      Craig, I have not seen a CAP KENNEDY paperback in years! They’ve utterly disappeared from the few used bookstores that survive in Western New York. The online prices for Tubb’s work can be expensive. Like you, I should reread the CAP KENNEDY series this year. Great reading!

      Reply
  37. Grady Loy

    Glad to see things are still going on this thread. Almost a decade. Hope something does happen in regard to Phil’s message last year about possible TV or movie sometime down the road.

    Reply
  38. Philip Harbottle

    Dear George,
    I hadn’t realized your site was still going after all these years, but I was delighted to discover it has extended into 2017! I enjoyed reading the most recent letters I’d missed seeing. Ted Tubb now has a major new UK publisher Endeavour Press (Pioneering Press and Venture Press Science Fiction imprints) who have brought out both e and paper editions of ALL his 11 westerns, and many all-new collections of his finest short SF stories. You’ll find them all on Amazon.com and UK.

    Grady is the most literate and insightful reviewer of Ted’s work I’ve ever known–I do wish he might contribute some reviews of Ted’s non-Dumarest work to Amazon book reviews. I’m sure they would boost their sales , for the benefit of his granddaughter.

    FYI, the Dumarest TV series is still very much “on.” The would-be producers have been working absolutely flat out for over two years now, and have been having top-level meetings all round the world. Time and again they have almost clinched a deal, only for it to fall at the very last hurdle–that hurdle being the American market. Right now (November) they have already clinched a top-level major TV star who wants to play Dumarest, a pilot already scripted and ongoing talks with several top TV writers and directors waiting to come on board. They now have many countries around the world standing by, all signed up and willing to take the series, but the whole thing simply hangs on their cracking America. They have more meetings lined up and are confident they might be on the brink of making it happen. Everything that can be done is being done.
    So–like Dumarest himself–don’t give up!
    Phil Harbottle

    Reply
    1. george Post author

      Phil, thanks for the update on Tubb publishing. I’ll have to check out those Tubb westerns! I’m sure Netflix and HULU and AMAZON Prime are looking for properties like the Dumarest series!

      Reply
  39. Grady Loy

    Just thought I would drop in and see what is going on. I was very moved by what Phil said (thank you. That is, if assuredly more complimentary than I deserve, one of the nicest things anyone has ever said to me. I will think about the Amazon reviews and I would do anything to contribute to people being more interested in and buying E.C Tubb’s books, both the Dumarest series and some of his other fascinating books as well.)

    I should probably mosey on down the trail of more recent posts here at http:\\georgekelley.org and see what George and other old friends have been up to while I have been off gadding about the stars.

    Reply

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