John "Bridge" Martin, a consumate Edgar Rice Burroughs fan and long time contributor to ERBapa (Edgar Rice Burroughs Amateur Publishing Association) and an on-line contributor to his exclusive Edgardemain Column at, reviews a new publication by equally recognized ERB fan and scholar Alan Hanson.


John "Bridge Martin

We've all heard of the Tribe of Kerchak but how many can quickly name the Tarzan books in which there were appearances by the Tribe of Pgath, the Tribe of Ungo and the Tribe of Mal-gash, to name a few. Oh yes, there are others.

Alan Hanson names each of the Mangani tribes Tarzan encountered and tells a little bit about them in Chapter 5, "The Mangani: 'The Hairy Men of the Forest'," in "Exploring Tarzan's Africa."

Alan sent me a copy of "Exploring" since I had written the forward for it and the book just arrived in my mailbox Wednesday. He is now preparing the books for shipment to those who are ordering them.

The Mangani chapter is one of three you have never read before in ERBapa, ERBania, or ERBzine, the fan media to which Alan has contributed over the years. They are the results of research Alan has done but never were made into articles until he put them together and incorporated them among the 15 chapters in "Exploring Tarzan's Africa," his new book which is chock full of Tarzan lore in an organized form.

All of the facts in Alan's 320-page softbound, nearly inch-thick and 8 1/2 x 11-inch book can be found by anyone who wants to read all of the Tarzan books and take notes. But Alan has already done it FOR you, and he didn't just whip through the novels in a couple of months as did most readers who eagerly grabbed them from paperback bookshelves back in the 60s, but he has read them again, and again, and again, taking notes each time, getting new ideas for other things to research each time he's read them, and keeping careful track to make sure he's documented every nuance of ERB's descriptions of Tarzan and his world.

Another thing you get in this book which isn't readily available in the Tarzan books is Alan's own conclusions as to what one can discern from this great body of literature or his assessment, in the case of a few contradictory passages penned by ERB over the space of 30-plus years, what explanation most likely fits all of the facts.

It is a good book for the ERB artist who wants to render Tarzan in an accurate way, and a good book for others who like to write their own research articles on ERB's Tarzan (Pssst! Alan has done a lot of the groundwork FOR you!) It's a good book for those who just like to sit around and read an overview of Tarzan, and a good book for even those who want nothing but Tarzan trivia -- plenty of facts in here with which to dazzle your friends!

Besides the chapter on The Mangani, the other writings done specially for this book are a chapter on Jad-bal-ja, the Golden Lion (everybody's favorite lion) and The Spiritual Tarzan. There are other chapters on Tantor, Nkima, the Waziri, Jane, the Women of Opar, Tarzan's Mode of Travel, the Physical Tarzan, and more.

Everywhere I've seen this book mentioned, I've seen comments by people saying they're ordering it. This is a limited edition and there's no guarantee that it will be reprinted, so get your copy ordered while you can.

Orders can be sent via paypal to Alan at The book is $29.95 plus $5 shipping.