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The Vampires of Mars

by Gustave Le Rouge
adapted by Brian Stableford

Short Stories
Sandwiched between Arnould Galopin's Doctor Omega (1906) and Edgar Rice Burroughs' A Princess of Mars (1912), Gustave Le Rouge's masterpiece, Le Prisonnier de la Planète Mars (1908) and its sequel, La Guerre des Vampires (1909), are a Martian Odyssey in which young engineer Robert Darvel is dispatched to Mars ny the psychic powers of Hindu Brahmins. On the Red Planet, Darvel runs afoul of hostile, bat-winged, blood-sucking natives, a once-powerful civilization now ruled by the Great Brain. The entity eventually sends Darvel back to Earth, unfortunately with some of the vampires. The second volume deals with the war of the vampires back on Earth.

Le Rouge's Mars is elaborately described, with its fauna, flora and various races of inhabitants, à la C. S. Lewis' Out of the Silent Planet (1938). Planetary romance blends with "cosmic horror" as the characters switch from swashbuckling he-men to helpless bundles of gibbering terror.

Cover by Mike Hoffman

Published by Black Coat Press in 2008
ISBN: 978-1-934543-30-6

The Brian Stableford Website