The Master Mind of Mars

by Edgar Rice Burroughs
Series: Barsoom 6
Reviewed date: 2005 Sep 12
Rating: 3
139 pages
cover art

The sixth book of the Mars series by Edgar Rice Burroughs. It is not related to the others plotwise and can be read as a stand-alone novel, although the previous books do give some background information. The Master Mind of Mars stars Ulysses Paxton, an American soldier who finds himself on Mars. His first act on Mars saves the life of Ras Thavas, a morally bankrupt scientist of unparalleled brilliance. Ras Thavas's trade is transplanting brains of wealthy patrons into young healthy bodies. Paxton studies as Ras Thavas's apprentice and to no one's surprise falls madly in love with one woman whose body Ras Thavas sells to a particularly rich client. Of course Paxton must risk all and go to war to recover the body of his true love.

The Master Mind of Mars is an excellent story, and a wonderful change from the standard Burroughs plot wherein a man pursues his true love across the globe to save her/win her heart. In this book, Paxton has already won the heart of his true love, but he must steal back her body.

They denied deity, and in the same breath worshipped the fetish of science that they had permitted to obsess them quite as harmfully as do religious fanatics accept the unreasoning rule of their imaginary gods; and so, with all their vaunted knowledge, they were unintelligent because unbalanced.

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