It's without question that Howard was GREAT when he was good, but even he had his down days writing wise. So what are the 3 best and 3 worst Conan stories
My personal favorite is Hour of the Dragon, and my least favorite is Vale of Lost Women.
What are are your other 2 best and worst choices? Seems odd that you ask others for 3 but only list one each of your own.
But anyway I'll participate in this survey, psych evaluation, purity test, or whatever it is. I like all the Conan stories so I'm not ranking the stories on any other criteria other than what Conan stories I read for pleasure most and least often. The 3 stories I read most often: The Scarlet Citadel The Tower of the Elephant Beyond the Black River
The 3 stories I read least often: Vale of Lost Women (I would agree it's not near the quality of the rest of REH's Conan stories. There are a couple of good scenes but overall it's lacking in points of interest compared the rest of the stories and it seems rushed to me.) Servants of Bit-Yakin Pool of the Black One
Mark Finn once wrote an overview of all the Conan yarns and rated them out of five with commentary on each one. It was about four years ago I read it but have had no luck finding it again to post a link. Well worth tracking down if it's still online.
"...I want to know where I came from and why and what relation I hold to the rest of the universe."
- Robert E. Howard to Tevis Clyde Smith, week of 20 Feb 1928, CL1.170
I have an affection for Servants of Bit-Yakin, probably because it was in the face book with Red Nails and BtBR
It's REH Conan so even if it's not a favorite it's still in a class by itself above the rest. Reminds me of something a grizzled old truck driver once told me concerning his on the road pastimes "Evan the worst was still better than anything else"
The last time I read "The Vale of Lost Women" I actually enjoyed it. Because it is so over the top and I could not take it entirely seriously, in same sense one cannot approach Tarantino movies without some sense of humor, or without some distance. The way I see it, it's one of those things one cannot be sure up to which point it's serious and when exactly it becomes a sort of parody.
I am aware REH didn't intend it as parody, but I am saying that's how the story reads, or at least how I experienced it on my last reading.