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  #1  
Old 08-16-2010, 03:55 PM
XT XT is offline
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Anyone remember the Horseclans?

I was just browsing through Audible looking for a new audio book or 3 for an up and coming trip and I noticed this. It's the first part to an old pulp fiction story that I remember reading when I was in my 20's, lo those many years ago. I was just wondering if any 'dopers remember the series as well.

I don't even remember what ever became of all the paperbacks, or even if the series ever ended (the last one's I remember were about Bili The Ax, or something like that). Anyone know if it did ever end??

-XT

Last edited by XT; 08-16-2010 at 03:56 PM..
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  #2  
Old 08-16-2010, 04:25 PM
palindromemordnilap palindromemordnilap is offline
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I remember the name, and I know I started reading the first one, but I don't remember anything more about it. My guess is that it didn't engage me and I stopped partway through. I do that a lot, and I tend to remember books I've read all the way through.
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Old 08-16-2010, 06:15 PM
silenus silenus is offline
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I liked the first one, but never could get into the series.
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  #4  
Old 08-16-2010, 06:25 PM
Harmonious Discord Harmonious Discord is offline
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I remember it and I even read some of it. I don't remember the story though except I wasn't thrilled by it.
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Old 08-16-2010, 07:30 PM
Broomstick Broomstick is offline
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Gosh yes - I read several of the books when I was a young thing. At the time I was riding horses in real life, full of teen angst and lust for adventure - it was a good time of life to read them. I really enjoyed them then, but I was also a different person lo, those many years ago!
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Old 08-16-2010, 08:13 PM
Lightray Lightray is offline
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I read 'em. Well, most of 'em. I think. Also have the GURPS Horseclans book.

I re-read one of the books a few years back... not impressed, at all. Writing was rather pedestrian. Some of the ideas -- telepathic big cats, etc. -- were rather interesting, but overdone to death by now. Milo Morai is a Marty Stu of the first water.

But I found I hadn't remembered some of the really offensive attitudes the writer had. To whit: homosexuality (and requisite effeminacy) used as the sure-fire sign of being one of the Bad Guys. There was a particular passage with some lisping (literally, described as lisping) bad guys lusting over Bili the Axe with maybe some rape connotations implied. So, pedestrian + offensive.
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  #7  
Old 08-16-2010, 10:03 PM
Little Nemo Little Nemo is online now
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It definitely ended. Robert Adams died in 1990 and nobody else picked up the series (although there was two short story collections by other authors set in the Horseclans world). But Adams had not finished the story at the time of his death - he said he had enough ideas for dozens more books.

There were eighteen books in the series.

The Coming of the Horseclans (1975)
Swords of the Horseclans (1976)
Revenge of the Horseclans (1977)
A Cat of Silvery Hue (1979)
The Savage Mountains (1979)
The Patrimony (1980)
Horseclans Odyssey (1981)
The Death of a Legend (1981)
The Witch Goddess (1982)
Bili the Axe (1982)
Champion of the Last Battle (1983)
A Woman of the Horseclans (1983)
Horses of the North (1985)
A Man Called Milo Morai (1986)
The Memories of Milo Morai (1986)
Trumpets of War (1987)
Madman's Army (1987)
The Clan of the Cats (1988)

The two collections were:
Friends of the Horseclans (1987)
Friends of the Horseclans 2 (1989)
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Old 08-16-2010, 10:46 PM
XT XT is offline
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I only really remember Cat of a Silvery Hue...that one I always liked. I guess I lost interest after Bili the Axe, since that's the last one I remember. I didn't know Adam's had died. Thanks for the info. Maybe I'll pick up the audible book and see if it's what I remember...it's only like 9 bucks, though I only see one audio book in the series.

-XT
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  #9  
Old 08-16-2010, 10:50 PM
BaneSidhe BaneSidhe is offline
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I have most of the books, including the 2 Friends of the Horseclans collections. Re-reading them now makes me realize what a homophobe Adams was, but the stories were decent. And there were horses in them
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Old 08-16-2010, 10:51 PM
XT XT is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lightray
But I found I hadn't remembered some of the really offensive attitudes the writer had. To whit: homosexuality (and requisite effeminacy) used as the sure-fire sign of being one of the Bad Guys. There was a particular passage with some lisping (literally, described as lisping) bad guys lusting over Bili the Axe with maybe some rape connotations implied. So, pedestrian + offensive.
I don't remember the anti-homosexuality parts. I recall them as war books set in some sort of post-apocalypse world without technology...something like that. Isn't one of the characters immortal or something like that?

-XT
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Old 08-16-2010, 11:06 PM
BaneSidhe BaneSidhe is offline
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Several of the characters were Immortals, Milo Morai included being one of them.

I didn't really notice the anti-gay slant right off, but on second and third reads, it's there. He refers to lesbians as "tongue sisters" and really gets into the "gay man=effeminate=bad guy."
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Old 08-16-2010, 11:08 PM
Tamerlane Tamerlane is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xtisme View Post
I don't remember the anti-homosexuality parts.
They're actually pretty bad. Not only a persistent equation of homosexuality with effete hedonism, but in a few instances with pedophilic rape. Seemingly gleefully described I might add.

Also lesbian voyeurism ( titillating sex scenes ), with said lesbianism then being cured by marriage to the right man.

Mr. Adams had issues.

Quote:
I recall them as war books set in some sort of post-apocalypse world without technology...something like that. Isn't one of the characters immortal or something like that?
The main character is in fact immortal ( he's rather like the comic book wolverine actually - massive healing factor, but vulnerable to drowning or decapitation as I recall ), but after awhile they became more common until there was at least a half dozen I think.

I really enjoyed them as a young teen, being a wee bit geeky about military history even back then. Also his time-traveling books set in the medieval British Isles ( though those got increasingly silly over time ).

But even as a young lad the homophobia kinda made me wince ( my folks had always had gay friends, including one of my favorite babysitters when I was young, so I was probably more enlightened than average for my age ). And they don't hold up quite so well in retrospect.

Still he undeniably had some talent.

Last edited by Tamerlane; 08-16-2010 at 11:10 PM..
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Old 08-17-2010, 02:17 PM
MrDibble MrDibble is offline
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It was the celebration of sibling incest that squicked me out, personally...
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Old 08-17-2010, 04:04 PM
XT XT is offline
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Sibling incest too? Wow...I don't remember any of this stuff! sheesh.

-XT
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  #15  
Old 08-17-2010, 04:47 PM
Tamerlane Tamerlane is offline
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Originally Posted by xtisme View Post
Sibling incest too? Wow...I don't remember any of this stuff! sheesh.
Oh and ephebophilia . Mature men hooking up with mid-teens on at least a couple of occasions. I recall the protagonist mentioning in the first book that he had decreed that age of consent among the Horseclans was...14? 15? At any rate it was part of a plot point as some tribal chieftain was knowingly raping his little twelve-year old slave girl who looked more mature.

I think this came up in the alternate history series as well, when the main protagonist inadvertently takes the virginity of a young sex slave ( oral only, apparently ) that turns out to be the long lost heir to the MacDonald Lordship of the Isles.

This stuff didn't squick me out at the time as I was under 20 myself, but now thinking about it adds a little more ammo to "he had issues" argument .
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  #16  
Old 08-17-2010, 06:07 PM
Little Nemo Little Nemo is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tamerlane View Post
Oh and ephebophilia . Mature men hooking up with mid-teens on at least a couple of occasions. I recall the protagonist mentioning in the first book that he had decreed that age of consent among the Horseclans was...14? 15? At any rate it was part of a plot point as some tribal chieftain was knowingly raping his little twelve-year old slave girl who looked more mature.
The crime as far as the other tribe members were concerned wasn't that he was raping the girl. It was that she was twelve. They would have been okay with him raping a fifteen year old. And if that wasn't disturbing enough the resolution to this uplifting story was that once the rapist realized how young she was he made it up to her by adopting her as his daughter and they supposedly went on to have normal father/daughter relationship.
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Old 08-17-2010, 07:22 PM
XT XT is offline
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Ok, now I remember some of that bit. Weren't they supposed to be like Mongol nomads or something? So the rape bit was, I'm guessing, supposed to illustrate the gritty realism. I am sort of remembering the homosexual bits now too, but from my own memories I thought the 'civilized' folks were supposed to be some sort of decadent Greeks (though I don't recall how Greeks would have made it to the US in a post-Apocalypse world).

I don't remember the telepathic cats at all, or the sibling incest bits...that all sounds much more disturbing than I remember the series being. Granted, it's been a LONG time since I read them, and I do remember that the series was getting fairly weird when I stopped reading it.

Did they ever re-unite the US or whatever it was they were trying to do? I don't think anyone needs to worry about spoilers, as I seriously doubt anyone is going to be reading or re-reading this series after some of the comments in this thread so far.

-XT
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Old 08-17-2010, 08:27 PM
Lightray Lightray is offline
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Originally Posted by xtisme View Post
Ok, now I remember some of that bit. Weren't they supposed to be like Mongol nomads or something? So the rape bit was, I'm guessing, supposed to illustrate the gritty realism. I am sort of remembering the homosexual bits now too, but from my own memories I thought the 'civilized' folks were supposed to be some sort of decadent Greeks (though I don't recall how Greeks would have made it to the US in a post-Apocalypse world).
I think that Milo (the immortal, Marty Stu character) had designed the Horseclans along Mongol lines. He went over that in one of the Milo-focused books.

There were no less than two eeevil homosexual cultures. There were the witch-men, who were government scientists before... well, whatever apocalypse it was... who'd become immortal by stealing the bodies of others. They were the effete, lisping villains I mentioned above.

Then there were the Ehleens (= "Hellenes"), Greeks who had inexplicably sailed across the Atlantic to conquer the eastern seaboard after just as inexplicably adopting much of the culture and mores of Classical Greece -- including homosexual ephebophilia, as someone alluded to above. They were bad guys, too. From what I vaguely recall, there was at least one redeemed villain whose heel-turn on villainy was indicated by giving up the gay, from the love of a good woman of course.

I lament that I still have braincells dedicated to remembering this stuff. But the telepathic big cats were cool.
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