Tarnsman of Gor, by John Norman
April 24, 2011 2 Comments
Tarnsman of Gor is a Sci/fi Fantasy written by John Norman in 1966. It is a bout Tarl Cabot a man from Earth who is taken to his long-lost father on a counter Earth called Gor. Counter Earth meaning a planet on the same orbit as Earth but on the exact opposite side of the sun so as to hide it from modern man on Earth. On this planet many things are low tech, while others are very high tech, all at the behest of the Priest/Kings who are revered as gods on this planet. There’s the device that can translate any language, even that of a giant spider, yet the warriors are not allowed to fight with anything more complex than a crossbow, or ride anything beyond beasts of burden. Also in this world there is slavery. Here, he is trained in the ways of Gor then sent on a mission, but things do not go as planned.
First off, this book series was brought to my attention through Deviant Art. In particular a woman who put up stock photos of the different slave positions. With them she included excerpts of lines from the Gor books. This is volume one of the Chronicles of Counter Earth. This is not D/s erotica, though I’ve been told the later books do dive a little more into that vicinity, we shall see. For the time being there was no more than a dance of love between the main character and a female character. The subject of slavery is not a racial thing, if anything it’s more of a sexist thing since all you see in this first book is female slaves. Even the main character is bothered by this aspect of Gor society but by the end of the book I’d say he’s become more Gorean in his thoughts.
I didn’t find anything wrong with Norman’s style of writing. He’s British, as is his character and an educator as well, and he wrote this back in the sixties so, his turn of phrase is different from most twenty-first century Americans. Still, I had no problem with following him. Sometimes it was hard to follow the new words that come with a new world, and I will admit, allot started to kind of sound the same (Tarl, Tarm, Tarn…) that and the ending was pretty abrupt.
All in all I would recommend this work. It’s a good, light read and entertaining when you come to his interactions with the Ubar’s daughter (pronounced U-bar btw…) I would have liked to see more in her perspective actually, I love a girl with spirit!