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Conan the Barbarian Books In Order

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Publication Order of Conan (Gnome Press) Books

Conan the Conqueror / The Hour of the Dragon (1950)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Sword of Conan (1952)Description / Buy at Amazon
King Conan (1953)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Coming of Conan (1953)Description / Buy at Amazon
Conan the Barbarian (1954)Description / Buy at Amazon
Tales of Conan (1955)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Return of Conan (1957)Description / Buy at Amazon

Chronological Order of Conan (Gnome Press) Books

Conan the Barbarian(1954)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Sword of Conan(1952)Description / Buy at Amazon
King Conan(1953)Description / Buy at Amazon
Conan the Conqueror / The Hour of the Dragon(1950)Description / Buy at Amazon
Tales of Conan(1955)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Return of Conan(1957)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Coming of Conan(1953)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Conan (Lancer/Ace) Books

Conan the Adventurer (1966)Description / Buy at Amazon
Conan the Warrior (1967)Description / Buy at Amazon
Conan the Usurper (1967)Description / Buy at Amazon
Conan the Conqueror (1967)Description / Buy at Amazon
Conan the Avenger (1968)Description / Buy at Amazon
Conan of the Isles (1968)Description / Buy at Amazon
Conan (1968)Description / Buy at Amazon
Conan the Freebooter (1968)Description / Buy at Amazon
Conan the Wanderer (1968)Description / Buy at Amazon
Conan of Cimmeria (1969)Description / Buy at Amazon
Conan the Buccaneer (1971)Description / Buy at Amazon
Conan of Aquilonia (1977)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Conan (Donald M. Grant) Books

The Hour of the Dragon / Conan the Conquerer (1950)Description / Buy at Amazon
The People of the Black Circle (1974)Description / Buy at Amazon
A Witch Shall Be Born (1975)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Tower of the Elephant (1975)Description / Buy at Amazon
Red Nails (1975)Description / Buy at Amazon
Conan in The Devil in Iron (1976)Description / Buy at Amazon
Rogues in the House Conan (1976)Description / Buy at Amazon
Queen of the Black Coast (1978)Description / Buy at Amazon
Jewels of Gwahlur (1979)Description / Buy at Amazon
Black Colossus (1979)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Pool of the Black One (1986)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Conan The Cimmerian Books

The Coming of Conan the Cimmerian (2002)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Bloody Crown of Conan (2004)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Conquering Sword of Conan (2005)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Conan (Ace Maroto 1978-1981) Books

Conan and the Sorcerer (1978)Description / Buy at Amazon
Treasure Of Tranicos (1980)Description / Buy at Amazon
Conan the Mercenary (1981)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Flame Knife (1981)Description / Buy at Amazon

“Conan the Barbarian” is a series of novels that stars Conan the Barbarian (also called the Cimmerian). He is a hero of sword and sorcery stories that appeared in different pulp fiction publications (one of which being Weird Tales, where many of the stories got published first). Robert E. Howard created the subgenre of sword and sorcery when writing these stories. This is the work that he is most known for writing.

The impact and popularity of this character has had has been likened to that of Sherlock Holmes, Tarzan, Count Dracula, James Bond, and Batman. These stories later were adapted into comics, books, television shows, and films.

Many authors have written novels or stories for this series. This includes Robert E. Howard (who created the series and character), Robert Jordan, Poul Anderson, Harry Turtledove, Lin Carter, Steve Perry, and John Maddox Roberts.

Some of the authors re-worked some of Howard’s work, or completed some stories that Howard had started but never finished. There are about seventeen stories that Howard published in his time, and four that were not; with other fragments of stories. Much more work about Conan were done by other authors. About fifty novels, and dozens of stories have been written about Conan by people other than Howard.

Howard wrote a story that featured someone remembering their past lives. One was a barbarian with black hair named Conan and held Crom (who was a deity) in high regard. It is here that this Conan is the origin of the famous character, some feel. While on vacation in a border town near the Rio Grande, he worked on the character of Conan some more. He decided to create the character to be able to market work to the new pulp outlets that were coming in the early 1930s.

When the last “Kull” story was rejected by a couple of pulp magazines, he re-wrote it and it became the first Conan story. It was originally called “By This Sword I Rule!” and the rewritten version is “The Phoenix on the Sword”. Some passages are identical in the two stories.

Conan, despite his looks (smoldering and sullen blue eyes, a hairy chest, giant in size, stronger than any other human, and square cut black haired mane) he has considerable intelligence. He does not have any peer when wielding a sword and has gotten good, through experience, at being a thief. He is a born leader, talented at commanding, and great with tactics. He even has a great sense of humor (at least in Howard’s stories about the character), but the comics and films do not feature this aspect of the character. He is a Cimmerian, a race that is based on the Gaels or Celts. His father was a blacksmith in the village that he lived in, and Conan was born on the field of battle. By fifteen years of age, he was a respected warrior that took part in destroying an Aquilonian outpost that is called Venarium. This is after he matured very quickly. Because of the way that the stories start, with Conan as king, it ensures that no matter what he does throughout the other stories, he will become king.

The series is set before known ancient civilizations rose, but after the city of Atlantis was destroyed. It is called the Hyborian Age. It is a specific point in the time line that Howard created. Howard both loved history, but did not like all of the research that was required for getting things right. This is why he created a fictional time line that he could put in anything that he wanted into the stories. He did not have to stick to the truth.

Time lines have been put together by different people to try and organize the events in the different stories. Not a single one incorporates every single story, however, and so none are complete.

Arnold Schwarzenegger played the character twice in the films “Conan the Barbarian” (which was released in the year 1982) and “Conan the Destroyer” (released in the year 1984). The former film was Schwarzenegger’s breakout role in acting. It was also based off some of the directors original ideas, and some stories that were written by other Conan authors like L. Sprague de Camp and Lin Carter. The sequel was less popular, as it was more of just a fantasy genre film, and was even less faithful to the Howard stories. In the year 2011, another movie was made, that moved away from the movies with Schwarzenegger, and had new mythology found in them. This Conan was played by Jason Momoa.

There have been three television series made as well. Two were animated and one was live action. “Conan the Adventurer” ran for exactly two years, having 64 episodes air in that time. “Conan and the Young Warriors” ran for only thirteen episodes. In the live action series (called “Conan the Adventurer”), Ralf Moller played Conan and the show ran for 22 episodes. Once again, the story deviated a lot from Howard’s version as Conan is pleasant, and is a member of a group of adventurers, not the loner that Howard wrote about.

“The Phoenix on the Sword” is the first novel in the “Conan the Barbarian” series and was released in the year 1932. When readers first see Conan, he is king. He took the crown from King Numedides, after he strangled him while the king sat upon his throne. Conan is better at swinging broadswords than signing documents. His people, in Aquilonia, have been turning against him, even though they were glad that he liberated them from Numedides’s tyranny. And they originally were welcoming to him at first. This is due to the fact that he is a foreigner and has Cimmerian blood. People burn incense before a statue that has been built for Numedides’s memory.

“The Scarlet Citadel” is the second novel in the “Conan the Barbarian” series and was released in the year 1933. In this story, Conan is wiser, middle aged, and is king of Aquilonia. Amalrus (ruler of Ophir, Aquilonia’s neighbor town) calls Conan for help. He says that Strabonus (who is the king of Koth) is threatening his border. Conan rushes to the aid of Amalrus, with five thousand of his knights to help him. It is a trap, as Strabonus and Amalrus are trying to destroy Conan with the help of Tsotha-Ianti (who is a wizard from Koth).

Book Series In Order » Characters » Conan the Barbarian

One Response to “Conan the Barbarian”

  1. Ric Medrow: 2 years ago

    Great post! I love Conan. I’d love to hear more about which authors are best at rendering. Conan was formative for me. I have loved in better physical condition and a bit more assertively because of these books. I likely read my last Conan book around 1984. I’d lo,e to dove back in. I don’t want to re-read something I’ve read, albeit almost 40 years ago. Of course, that opinion might change if you tell me that the post-1984 books sucked. I’ve literally lived my life in phenomenal shape. But, I had rotator cuff surgery a year ago. I’ve lost everything I had. I need to get it back. Reading Conan, I think, will do it. Where should I start?


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