Beyond the Black River is one of my favorite stories of REH. Scholars say it was orginally written for Kull in By This Axe I rule and modified with Conan later on. As always REH medaphoric stories tell something about him and in this case scholars agree that a young Balthus is REH and a dog he finds along the way Slasher is Patches REH's only dog he ever had. Excerp from the book, A slight sound ahead of him jumped his heart into his throat and Conan's sword gleamed in the air. He lowered it when a dog, a great, gaunt, scared beast, slunk out of the bushes and stood staring at them. 'That dog belonged to a settler who tried to build his cabin on the bank of the river a few miles south of the fort,' grunted Conan. 'The Picts slipped over and killed him of course and burned his cabin. We found him dead among the embers, and the dog lying senseless among three Picts he'd killed. He was almost cut to pieces. We took him to the fort and dressed his wounds, but after he recovered he took to the woods and turned wild. What now, Slasher, are you hunting the men who killed your master?' The massive head swung side to side and his eyes glowed greenly. He did not growl or bark. Silently as a phantom he slid in behind them. 'Let him come,' muttured Conan. 'He can smell the devils before we can see them.' Balthus smiled and laid his hand caressingly on the dog's head. This story is a classic and I believe a movie should be made. It would make movie history. In fact, there are a lot of REH stories that should be made into movies. Enjoy the book and tell other people about REH. You're in for a real treat! I believe Beyond The Black River needs to be make into a movie! It's a classic! Anyone know award winning actor/directors Mel Gibson & Clint Eastwood who are the best of the best, too?
Also recommended: One Whole Walked Alone by Novalyne Price-REH's girlfrield, Blood & Thunder, The Life & Art of REH by Mark Finn, and The Last of the Trunk by Paul Herman of REHFoundation, The Abyss a story about cats=really good! Two-Gun Bob, The Dark Barbarian and The Barbaric Triumpth by Don Herron, Selected Letters of REH at REH Foundation on net, The Star Rover by Jack London that had a major influence on REH, Life After Life by Dr. Raymond Moody, Solomon Kane, Kull, Crimson Shadows the Best of REH 1 & 2, Bran Mak Morn, Lord of Samarcand, Conan of Dark Horse comics and Conan of 60s & 70s Marvel Black & White magazine by Roy Thomas and John Buscema, Red Nails, and The Black Stranger & Other American Tales that has the scariest story called Pigeons From Hell, Weird Tales - 32 Unearthed Stories from 1922-1954 that has one real scarey story called Winged Death by Hazel Heald about a man pestered by a fly with blue wings and The Stone Man by same author. Check out the REH Foundation and Forum!