A Princess of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs

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Who are some important science fiction writers (or scientists) that you can name off the top of your head? Carl Sagan is probably one that comes to mind real quick. Robert Heinlein is probably another, as are Arthur C. Clarke and Ray Bradbury. Besides their love of science fiction, they also have one more thing that ties them together: their love for a little classic called A Princess of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs.

Among all genres, science fiction is unique in that it tries to bring to life what might be possible just a little bit down the line. It burrows itself in the brain of its readers and makes them ask, eternally: “Why not this? Or that?” The Barsoom series by Edgar Rice Burroughs is one of those many works that does just that. A Princess of Mars is the first of 11 books in the series that sees the legendary John Carter transported to Mars after he runs afoul of the Apaches in Arizona after striking gold. There, he is embroiled in war & politics and finds love with Dejah Thoris, a princess.

First serialized in 1912, it wasn’t until 1917 that a hardcover edition of the book was released. Over 30 more years, Burroughs wrote 10 more books; the first five books (include A Princess of Mars) are in the public domain; the next book, The Master Mind of Mars, will enter the public domain in 2024, when all works published in 1928 enter the public domain.

You can get a stand alone copy of the book here or, if you really want to dive in, get a set of seven novels here. There was a film called John Carter released in 2012 and 2009s Avatar was influenced by A Princess of Mars.