Robert Ellsmore Grandon stifled a yawn…He was tired of life at twenty-four, he decided – tired and disillusioned and trapped…[he] yearned for action, adventure, romance – something that seemed to be gone in this world of the Twentieth Century.
That is how Otis Adelbert Kline’s novel Planet of Peril began.
And it was written in 1930.
We often think that our lives are unique to our time, but in many ways they are not. So were the fantastic adventures of Kline and his contemporary Edgar Rice Burroughs, at their foundation, a reflection of buried desires? In particular the desire not to be suppressed and molded by whichever social and political masterminds are currently in style? To not be drug into endless, mindless repetition? The rebellion against conformity and corruption?
Perhaps some think this is reading too much into the over-the-top adventures from sci-fi’s first Golden Era. On the other hand, those extreme adventures may also be reminders of how far we fall from our potential.
Read to be entertained. Read to get lost. Read to be inspired.