The Martian Epic
THE MARTIAN EPIC
by Octave Joncquel & Théo Varlet
adapted by Brian Stableford
cover by Arnaud Demaegd
"The planet Mars, which has sinned by fire against sidereal Fraternity will be punished by the fire of immanent Justice, of which Jupiter has instituted itself as the champion. This fire, borrowed from the radiance of Our Father the Sun, will be unleashed upon the aforesaid planet Mars on June 22, by the terrestrial calendar, and the Execution will commence at midnight."
The Masters of Jupiter
"Glory to Thee, Our Father the Sun! Despite of the enemies of our holy race-the degenerate occupants of that vast abode which is known as Jupiter-despite the impious fire that they have drawn from Thine rays to bring the End-of-the-World to our beloved Fatherland, we have transmigrated by way of the Etheric fields, and reached our promised Eden, which those presumptuous demons, the Humans, call their Earth! Better than our messengers of death, the genius of our Magi will make them bow down before us in thousands, and deliver their bodies to our souls! So shall it be!"
The Martian Epic, written in 1921, is a ground-breaking novel on several levels. First, as a sequel of sorts to H.-G. Wells' War of the Worlds, which is treated here as a prophetic vision heralding the all-out, destructive Martian attack of 1978. Second, as a post-cataclysmic epic, in which a handful of scientists battle hordes of cannibals and anarchists roaming a devastated Earth, while trying to rebuild its civilization. Finally, as a startlingly original cosmic saga, in which souls travel inward through the Solar System to end up one with the Sun--the true reason for the Martian invasion.
Les Titans du ciel (1921) and L'agonie de la Terre (1922) by Octave Joncquel & Théo Varlet
Introduction, Afterword and Notes by Brian Stableford.