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Flash Gordon

Flash Gordon - Arthur Byron Cover This was much better than I'd thought it would be. I don't remember the movie but I'm sure I must have seen it way back when. It's a great adventure in the heady realms of pulp sci fi, with all the ingredients that you would expect being present, and a few more that you might not. Turns out Dale is a bit of a swinger, or was until she split with her boyfreind because he was taking it a little too seriously, a little further than she was entirely comfortable with. Well, who'd have thought it. Dale, a swinger. Each to their own I suppose. It just came as bit of a surprise when I first read it is all.

So, you all know the story. Flash and Dale are taken at gunpoint to the planet Mongo by Dr Hans Zarkov where an evil dictator and all-round madman called Ming rules with an iron fist. They join forces with the locals and overthrow him. Oh, and Ming's daughter betrays him and helps them too, but I'm not spoiling it for anyone here of course because the story's so well known.

I loved the little extra details that really made this novel that bit more special. The description of Zarkov's rocket ship with it's fancy fins and little flashing bulbs on the control console for example were just a delight.

The moments of sarcasm from Dale, and the hints here and there regarding Ming and his daughter, Aura. These moments really added something special to this novel and make me want to track down the movie now so that I can re-live those moments on screen, although I doubt Dale's more intimate revelations are part of the movie version.

Anyway, a very enjoyable read. Some unexpected moments, and the tongue-in-cheek pulpiness is just priceless. Highly recomended.