Sword and Planet Fantasy Books

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This list crosses into science fiction territory as many of the books would be considered science fantasy (which can be science fiction as well as fantasy). Sword and Planet stories take place on alien worlds. These worlds all have differences, but there is almost always a contradiction. For example, in Edgar Rice Burroughs' classic A Princess of Mars, the Martians have flying ships, but use beasts for transportation, they have advanced weaponry, but generally engage in hand to hand combat with melee weapons. The alien cultures are simultaneously more advanced and more primitive than Earth cultures.
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Dune

by Frank Herbert

5 avg rating
Frank Herbert’s classic masterpiece—a triumph of the imagination and one of the bestselling science fiction novels of all time—nominated as one of America’s best-loved novels by PBS’s The Great American Read.

Set on the desert planet Arrakis, Dune is the story of the boy Paul Atreides—who would become known as Muad’Dib—and of a great family’s ambition to bring to fruition humankind’s most ancient and unattainable dream.

A stunning blend of adventure and mysticism, environmentalism and politics, Dune won the first Nebula Award, shared the Hugo Award, and formed the basis of what is undoubtedly the grandest epic in science fiction.
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The Princess Of Mars

by Edgar Rice Burroughs

When John Carter goes to sleep in a mysterious cave in the Arizona dessert, he wakes up on the planet Mars. There he meets the fifteen foot tall, four armed, green men of mars, with horse-like dragons, and watch dogs like oversized frogs with ten legs. His adventures continue as he battles great white apes, fights plant men, defies the Goddess of Death, and braves the frozen wastes of Polar Mars. In other adventures, the Prince of Helium encounters a race of telepathic warriors, the Princess of Helium confronts the headless men of Mars, Captain Ulysses Paxton learns the secret of human immortality, and Tan Hadron's idealized notion of love is tested as he fights off gigantic spiders and cannibals.

Edgar Rice Burroughs vision of Mars was loosely inspired by astronomical speculation of the time, especially that of Percival Lowell, who saw the red planet as a formerly Earth-like world now becoming less hospitable to life due to its advanced age. Burroughs predicted the invention of homing devices, radar, sonar, autopilot, collision detection, television, teletype, genetic cloning, living organ transplants, antigravity propulsion, and many other concepts that were well ahead of his time. The books in the Barsoom series were an early inspiration to many, including science fiction authors Robert A. Heinlein, Arthur C. Clarke and Ray Bradbury, they influenced renowned scientist Carl Sagan in his quest for extraterrestrial life, and were instrumental in the making of James Cameron's Avatar, and George Lucas' Star Wars.

This edition includes 35 illustrations by Frank Schoonover, J. Allan St. John, V. Cutta, P. J. Monahan, George Wildschut & Frank R. Paul.
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Planet Of Adventures

by Jack Vance

Stranded on the distant planet Tschai, young Adam Reith is the sole survivor of a space mission who discovers the world is inhabited--not only by warring alien cultures, but human slaves as well, taken early in Earth's history. Reith must find a way off planet to warn the Earth of Tschai's deadly existence.

Against a backdrop of baroque cities and haunted wastelands, sumptuous palaces and riotous inns, Reith will encounter deadly wastrels and murderous aliens, dastardly villains and conniving scoundrels.

And always the random beauty in need of rescue...
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Almuric

by Robert E. Howard

Esau Cairn, a former boxer seeking exile, is transported from Earth to the planet Almuric. Cairn finds human tribes in fortified towns and fights apelike humans, winged demons, and other monsters. By the end of the novel, he and his friends from the towns Khor and Koth must capture Ugg -- citadel of the winged Yaga demons! A thrilling sword-and-planet novel originally published as a 3-part serial in "Weird Tales" magazine.
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Transit To Scorpio

by Dray Prescot

Book One of the Dray Prescot series. On the planet Kregen that circles Antares, the brightest star of the Constellation of the Scorpion, two forces contend for the world's destiny. One of them, the Savanti, called in a human pawn from far-away Earth. His name is Dray Prescot, and only the Savanti know his role. Dray Prescot confronted a fabulous world -- barbaric, unmapped, peopled with both human and non-human races. But there were always the Star Lords to watch and check the Savanti's plans. And it soon turned out that Dray Prescot himself had to make a decision that would change him from a mere pawn to a bolder piece on the planetary chessboard... (65000 words)
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The Morgaine Saga

by C. J. Cherryh

Sword-and-sorcery meets hard sci-fi in C.J. Cherryh's epic story of a woman's mission across time and space to preserve the integrity of the universe.
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Swords Of Talera

by Charles Allen Gramlich

Abruptly transported from Earth to Talera, Ruenn Maclang must slash his way through a world of alien warriors and deadly beasts, where every move can result in death. To stay alive and find his missing brother, Ruenn must quickly learn the discipline of sword and spear, and experience the bitter stench of battle. And he must uncover the many hidden secrets of Talera, a weird and wonderful world very different from our own.

A grand adventure in the tradition of Edgar Rice Burroughs and Robert E. Howard.

CHARLES ALLEN GRAMLICH has written novels and stories of horror, science fiction, and fantasy, among many other genres. He lives and works in Louisiana. Watch for the second and third volumes in The Talera Cycle, available from the Borgo imprint of Wildside Press.
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Safehold Series

by David Weber

David Weber's Like a Mighty Army is the hotly anticipated seventh volume in the New York Times bestselling Safehold series

For centuries, the world of Safehold, last redoubt of the human race, lay under the unchallenged rule of the Church of God Awaiting. The Church permitted nothing new-no new inventions, no new understandings of the world.

What no one knew was that the Church was an elaborate fraud--a high-tech system established by a rebel faction of Safehold's founders, meant to keep humanity hidden from the powerful alien race that had destroyed old Earth.

Then awoke Merlyn Athrawes, cybernetic avatar of a warrior a thousand years dead, felled in the war in which Earth was lost. Monk, warrior, counselor to princes and kings, Merlyn has one purpose: to restart the history of the too-long-hidden human race.

And now the fight is thoroughly underway. The island empire of Charis has declared its independence from the Church, and with Merlyn's help has vaulted forward into a new age of steam-powered efficiency. Fending off the wounded Church, Charis has drawn more and more of the countries of Safehold to the cause of independence and self-determination. But at a heavy cost in bloodshed and loss--a cost felt by nobody more keenly that Merlyn Athrawes.

The wounded Church is regrouping. Its armies and resources are vast. The fight for humanity's future isn't over, and won't be over soon...

Safehold Series
1. Off Armageddon Reef
2. By Schism Rent Asunder
3. By Heresies Distressed
4. A Mighty Fortress
5. How Firm A Foundation
6. Midst Toil and Tribulation
7. Like A Mighty Army
8. Hell's Foundations Quiver
9. At the Sign of Triumph

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The Book Of Skaith

by Leigh Brackett

Eric John Stark, Outlaw of Mars, travels beyond the solar system for exciting science fantasy adventures on the planet of Skaith, a lawless sphere at the edge of the known universe. Raised as a savage on the hostile planet of Mercury and honed into a fearless warrior in the low canals of the Red Planet, Stark is one of science fiction's greatest adventurers and is Leigh Brackett's most famous character. In The Ginger Star, Simon Ashton, Stark's foster father, has been kidnapped by the Lords Protector, and only Stark can rescue him!
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The Gods Of Mars

by Edgar Rice Burroughs

Edgar Rice Burroughs vision of Mars was loosely inspired by astronomical speculation of the time, especially that of Percival Lowell, who saw the red planet as a formerly Earth-like world now becoming less hospitable to life due to its advanced age. Burroughs predicted the invention of homing devices, radar, sonar, autopilot, collision detection, television, teletype, genetic cloning, living organ transplants, antigravity propulsion, and many other concepts that were well ahead of his time. The books in the Barsoom series were an early inspiration to many, including science fiction authors Robert A. Heinlein, Arthur C. Clarke and Ray Bradbury, they influenced renowned scientist Carl Sagan in his quest for extraterrestrial life, and were instrumental in the making of James Cameron’s Avatar, and George Lucas’ Star Wars.
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Starwars Jedi Academy

by Jeffrey Brown

New York Times bestselling author/illustrator Jeffrey Brown takes readers to a middle school in a galaxy far, far away....

This incredible, original story captures all of the humor, awkwardness, fun, and frustrations of middle school--all told through one boy's comics, journal entries, letters, doodles, and newspaper clippings. The setting? A galaxy far, far away...

Roan's one dream is to leave home and attend Pilot Academy like his older brother, father, and grandfather. But just as Roan is mysteriously denied entrance to Pilot School, he is invited to attend Jedi Academy--a school that he didn't apply to and only recruits children when they are just a few years old. That is, until now...

This inventive novel follows Roan's first year at Jedi Academy where, under the tutelage of Master Yoda, he learns that he possesses more strength and potential than he could have ever dreamed. Oh, and he learns other important things too--like how to make a baking soda volcano, fence with a lightsaber, slow dance with a girl, and lift boulders with the Force.
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Glory Road

by Robert A. Heinlein

E. C. "Scar" Gordon was on the French Riviera recovering from a tour of combat in Southeast Asia , but he hadn't given up his habit of scanning the Personals in the newspaper. One ad in particular leapt out at him:

"ARE YOU A COWARD? This is not for you. We badly need a brave man. He must be 23 to 25 years old, in perfect health, at least six feet tall, weigh about 190 pounds, fluent English, with some French, proficient in all weapons, some knowledge of engineering and mathematics essential, willing to travel, no family or emotional ties, indomitably courageous and handsome of face and figure. Permanent employment, very high pay, glorious adventure, great danger. You must apply in person, rue Dante, Nice, 2me étage, apt. D."

How could you not answer an ad like that, especially when it seemed to describe you perfectly? Well, except maybe for the "handsome" part, but that was in the eye of the beholder anyway. So he went to that apartment and was greeted by the most beautiful woman he'd ever met. She seemed to have many names, but agreed he could call her "Star." A pretty appropriate name, as it turned out, for the empress of twenty universes.

Robert A. Heinlein's one true fantasy novel, Glory Road is as much fun today as when he wrote it after Stranger in a Strange Land. Heinlein proves himself as adept with sword and sorcery as with rockets and slide rules and the result is exciting, satirical, fast-paced, funny and tremendously readable -- a favorite of all who have read it. Glory Road is a masterpiece of escapist entertainment with a typically Heinleinian sting in its tail. Tor is proud to return this all-time classic to hardcover to be discovered by a new generation of readers.
Hugo
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Blood Destiny

by Connie Suttle

"The sight of three naked, bloody men wandering into the clearing with moonlight clouding their eyes would probably send anyone else running for their life. I just sighed and watched them walk toward me."

As the first female vampire successfully turned in 700 years, Lissa finds herself in demand by the Vampire Aristocracy. Forced into an unexpected engagement as a result, Lissa feels trapped and stifled as she continues training with her surrogate sire. When a request comes from the Grand Master of the werewolves, Weldon Harper, Lissa leaps at the opportunity to work as his bodyguard once more.

Wlodek, Head of the Vampire Council, in an effort to solidify vampire/werewolf relations, allows Lissa to provide protection for the Grand Master during his yearly travels across the U.S. The only vampire ever named Pack, Lissa is permitted to work with the Grand Master without supervision from others of her kind.

Things become complicated and then downright deadly as old enemies reemerge. Intent on exacting revenge for a failed coup against the Grand Master, rogue werewolves join with new and perilous allies. Now, Lissa must find a way not only to keep the werewolf race alive, but the vampires as well.
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The Warlord Of Mars

by Edgar Rice Burroughs

This book was converted from its physical edition to the digital format by a community of volunteers. You may find it for free on the web. Purchase of the Kindle edition includes wireless delivery.
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Starwars Dark Force Rising

by Timothy Zahn

The dying Empire’s most cunning and ruthless warlord, Grand Admiral Thrawn, has taken command of the remnants of the Imperial fleet and launched a massive campaign aimed at the New Republic’s destruction. Meanwhile, Han Solo and Lando Calrissian race against time to find proof of treason inside the highest Republic Council—only to discover instead a ghostly fleet of warships that could bring doom to their friends and victory to their enemies.
 
Yet most dangerous of all is a new Dark Jedi, risen from the ashes of a shrouded past, consumed by bitterness, and scheming to corrupt Luke Skywalker to the dark side.
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Swordsmen In The Sky

by Donald A. Wollheim

Cover code F-311 indicates first of two printings. Collects five stories: Swordsmen of Lost Terra (1951) by Poul Anderson; The People of the Crater (1947) by Andre Norton; The Moon That Vanished (1948) by Leigh Brackett; A Vision of Venus (1933) by Otis Adelbert Kline; and Kaldar, World of Antares (1933) by Edmond Hamilton. Wonderful space opera!
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Stray

by Andrea K. Höst

Part 1 of the Touchstone trilogy.

On her last day of high school, Cassandra Devlin walked out of exams and into a forest. Surrounded by the wrong sort of trees, and animals never featured in any nature documentary, Cass is only sure of one thing: alone, she will be lucky to survive.

The sprawl of abandoned blockish buildings Cass discovers offers her only more puzzles. Where are the people? What is the intoxicating mist which drifts off the buildings in the moonlight? And why does she feel like she's being watched?

Increasingly unnerved, Cass is overjoyed at the arrival of the formidable Setari. Whisked to a world as technologically advanced as the first was primitive, where nanotech computers are grown inside people's skulls, and few have any interest in venturing outside the enormous whitestone cities, Cass finds herself processed as a 'stray', a refugee displaced by the gates torn between worlds. Struggling with an unfamiliar language and culture, she must adapt to virtual classrooms, friends who can teleport, and the ingrained attitude that strays are backward and slow.

Can Cass ever find her way home? And after the people of her new world discover her unexpected value, will they be willing to let her leave?
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