'Sojan' versions


Multiversal nomad
Sep 20, 2011
[j.d. asked this in the 'Another Attempt at a Moorcock Bibliography' thread but the length of my answer probably means it's better in its own thread rather than risk derailing the original thread.]

Now... The Sojan revision you mention... is this a revision of the set of stories, does this include new pieces, etc.? I'm quite curious about that as, though the Sojan stories are (obviously) among his weakest pieces, given the period they were written, they are quite interesting in some ways....
The new Sojan book (packaged alongside Joe R. Lansdale's Under the Warrior Star by Paizo Publishing) has been expanded from the original/previous publications with a new introductory chapter that ties Sojan more firmly into Moorcock's Multiverse (essentially providing an origin for Sojan - including his 'real' name - which may or may not be essential in itself (I have my doubts)). Six individual chapters* are expanded and contain new material which may be of interest to Moorcock completists but don't necessarily change the overall narrative.

Sojan has had four iterations now:

  1. Original Tarzan Adventures stories (1957-8)
  2. Sojan, Savoy, 1977 - collects the Tarzan Adventures stories
  3. 'Sojan the Swordsman' (novella), Elric at the the End of Time, New English Library, 1984 - assembles the Tarzan Adventures stories into a single narrative.
  4. Sojan the Swordsman, Paizo Publishing, 2010 - discussed above

The differences are as follows (normally I'd link to the Wikiverse articles rather than repeat everything here so I beg your collective indulgences):

1. Tarzan Adventures

  • v7 #22, 31/08/1957, contains 'Sojan the Swordsman'
  • v7 #25, 21/09/1957, contains 'Mission to Asno'
  • v7 #34, 23/11/1957, contains 'Revolt in Hatnor'
  • v7 #38, 21/12/1957, contains 'The Hordes Attack'
  • v7 #47, 22/02/1958, contains 'The Purple Galley'
  • v7 #48, 01/03/1958, contains 'The Sea Wolves'
  • v7 #49, 08/03/1958, contains 'Sojan at Sea'
  • v7 #50, 15/03/1958, contains 'The Sea of Demons'
  • v7 #51, 22/03/1958, contains 'Prisoners in Stone'
  • v8 #09, 31/05/1958, contains 'Sojan and the Plain of Mystery'
  • v8 #12, 21/06/1958, contains 'Sojan and the Sons of The Snake God'
  • v8 #15, 12/07/1958, contains 'Sojan and the Hunters of Norj'

2. Sojan

  • Sojan the Swordsman
    • Sojan the Swordsman
    • Mission to Asno
  • Sojan, Swordsman of Zylor
    • Revolt in Hatnor
    • The Hordes Attack
  • Sojan and the Sea of Demons
    • The Purple Galley
    • The Sea Wolves!
    • Sojan at Sea
    • The Sea of Demons
    • Prisoners in Stone
  • Sojan and the Plain of Mystery
  • Sojan and the Sons of the Snake-God
  • Sojan and the Devil Hunters of Norj, originally 'Sojan and the Hunters of Norj'

3. "Sojan the Swordsman", novella

  1. Daughter of a Warrior King, originally "Sojan the Swordsman"
  2. Mission to Asno
  3. Revolt in Hatnor
  4. The Hordes Attack
  5. The Purple Galley
  6. The Sea Wolves!
  7. Sojan at Sea
  8. The Sea of Demons
  9. Prisoners in Stone
  10. The Plain of Mystery, originally as "Sojan and the Plain of Mystery"
  11. The Sons of the Snake-God, originally as "Sojan and the Sons of the Snake-God"
  12. The Devil Hunters of Norj, originally as "Sojan and the Hunters of Norj"

4. Sojan the Swordsman, novel

  • Introduction (new chapter)
  • Chapter One: Sojan the Swordsman (expanded)
  • Chapter Two: The War King (expanded)
  • Chapter Three: The Air Pirates (expanded)
  • Chapter Four: A Grim Welcome
  • Chapter Five: Sentenced to Die
  • Chapter Six: The Prison Tower (expanded)
  • Chapter Seven: The Sky Chase (expanded)
  • Chapter Eight: Mission to Asno
  • Chapter Nine: Revolt in Hatnor
  • Chapter Ten: The Hordes Attack
  • Chapter Eleven: A Warrior's Justice
  • Chapter Twelve: The Purple Galley
  • Chapter Thirteen: The Sea Wolves
  • Chapter Fourteen: Sojan at Sea!
  • Chapter Fifteen: The Sea of Demons
  • Chapter Sixteen: Prisoners of Stone
  • Chapter Seventeen: The Unlucky Ones
  • Chapter Eighteen: The Plain of Mystery
  • Chapter Nineteen: Ship of the Ancients
  • Chapter Twenty: Sons of the Snake God
  • Chapter Twenty-One: The Castle of Kandoon
  • Chapter Twenty-Two: The Devil Hunters of Norj
  • Chapter Twenty-Three: Hounds of the Cerjii (expanded)
*Note: Chapters 2-7, 11, 17, 19, 21 & 23 are split from their respective preceding chapter (1, 10, 16, 20 & 22) to create new divisions but (except where noted) are basically the same content as in previous versions of the stories.
Thank you very much for the added information. I can see I will need to pick up a copy of this sometime in the near future (probably early next year). I have unfortunately had to cut back quite a bit on my book buying, and even with what I have been picking up, I've been having to concentrate on a narrower set of things than I would normally, in order to keep up with some things I needed for research materials, and which are not necessarily easily accessible otherwise. So my Moorcock purchases have been "on hold" the last couple of years; but I hope to rectify that early in the new year.

I look forward to seeing what the differences are, as sometimes even the small differences can have some wider ramifications in the overall structure of his work... at least in their philosophical implications, if not in the actual story or importance of plot elements, etc. A shift in emphasis can sometimes make quite a difference in the significance of a thing, and to my mind Moorcock does often does this quite well....
I read a few of the Sojan Stories . Not bad stuff.

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