The new addition to the Tarzan canon, officially sanctioned by the ERB folks is Return to Pal-Ul-Don by Will Murray from Altus Press. This sprawling adventure is available now in paperback sporting a lush wraparound cover by Joe DeVito. I was eager to tear into this latest adventure of the Ape Man, I was in a rush to revisit one of the most evocative ERB environments, and so I started the book with real excitement.
The story is a sequel of sorts to the early Burrough's novel Tarzan the Terrible which takes the Ape Man into a hidden land full of dinosaurs and different species of tailed humanoids. The land of Pal-Ul-Don (translates I think to the "Land of Man") but that is part of the problem here. The novel by Will Murray, a writer I have great confidence in considering his evocative and exciting Doc Savage adventures, alas disappoints. For one thing it's too long, considerably so given the meager plot. During WWII Tarzan as a member of the British military enters Pal-Ul-Don to find a missing courier who brings a potent secret to the Allies. He quickly finds himself allied with Torn Ear, an noble elephant and they penetrate the land of dinosaurs. We meet first Turtle People and later a single representative of the tailed people he'd met before. It's mostly a lengthy series of battles with a new breed, a silent, albino, and deadly race of Spider People who occupy most of the story and that's the rub.
|Joe DeVito's panoramic cover art|
I can only offer a limited recommendation for this one. It's certainly a new Tarzan adventure and for fans that's sufficient, but it's not the best one I've read, by far. Too bad.