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Some of the darkest hints in all of H. What happens when Cthulhu is unleashed upon the world? What happens when the other Old Ones, long since banished from our universe, break through and descend from the stars? What would the reign of Cthulhu be like on a totally transformed planet where mankind is no longer the master? Find out in these exciting stories. The Dunwich Horror. At the Mountains of Madness.

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The Call of Cthulhu. The Dunwich Horror and Others. The H. Lovecraft Collection: Slip-cased Edition. About the Author H. Read more.

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H. P. Lovecraft

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Please try again later. Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase. Growing up playing table-top role playing games with my friends always made me feel that I had already read these stories in some form or another. Not that Lovecraft copyrighted the idea of forces beyond our understanding existing somewhere past space and time, or horrifying creatures festooned with faces full of tentacles but its clear that a lot of scenarios and monsters borrow liberally from his stories or at least what people think are the general feel of his stories which can add a certain sense of familiarity with something you've never even read.

Couple that with years of jokes involving everyone's favorite cuddly talk show host Cthulhu or the mythos itself being co-opted in order to make fun of other things my favorite is a parody of Jack Chick tract "Who Will Be Eaten First? Surely everyone else who came up and played with the same material did it better? Actually, surprisingly, no. Paging through these stories, which is the first of a three volume set meant to collect all of his fiction nowadays there seems to be a boxset of sorts for that purpose but this was it back when I bought this in, er, a couple things become fairly clear.

One, a lot of mythos based Lovecraft stories seem to have the same structural pattern, which is a tale narrated by someone generally a white dude from New England but we'll be charitable and say he went with what he knew who gradually discovers, either through personal experience or because someone else tells him about their personal experience, that the world is not as we know it and there are forces that exist beyond space and time and beyond our puny understanding that are lying in wait to one day maybe tomorrow, maybe a thousand years from now, YOU NEVER KNOW rise up and devour us all in their meaty tentacles.

The knowledge of this blows their minds to the point where they become unhinged and the story will thus end with the person either gripped with irrational fear while imagining the dreaming city rising to the surface or the narrator will actively go insane. Rarely is the monster even glimpsed, or is glimpsed just enough to really throw the poor soul for a loop. Imagine an "X-Files" episode where discovering the truth out there is actually the worst possible outcome, where they are so out of their league that the other league doesn't even bother acknowledging the possibility of their existence, let alone giving them a chance to do anything about it.

Now imagine that happening every week. Congratulations, you've experienced the heart tugging joy of a Lovecraft story. But even if reading a bunch of them in a row gives you the nagging feeling of knowing how this movie is going to end, what still impresses is how certain Lovecraft is when it comes to what makes his stories tick and how well he controls the mood and atmosphere to that end. Taking some cues from one of his idols, Arthur Machen who gets namedropped in the actual stories enough that this sometimes reads like one long tribute to everything he did , he realizes that while Gothic castles are foreboding enough, set the action on some guy's farm and it becomes astoudingly more terrifying, as if by eldritch magic.

A lot of writers that came after him made the mistake of casting the stories as a good versus evil motif when it quickly becomes clear that Cthulhu and his ilk don't even know what good and evil are, they devour those notions just like they devour any hopes that you might make it out of the story with your sanity intact. What Lovecraft really does well is capture a very vivid sense of "you're screwed" but not in the "your wife caught you cheating" or "the feds figured out you embezzled" or "it would have been nice to fix the brakes before going up that mountain" way, but a very cosmic sort of doom, one where the best outcome is that you are entirely obliterated and yet it's never really personal.

Yog-Sothoth isn't becoming the gate simply because he doesn't like you, he has in fact absolutely zero regard for you whatsoever, in the same fashion that you might regard bacteria.


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Except you'll probably notice if the bacteria do something weird. The Elder Gods can't even be bothered. And it's that combination of the universe reminding you how powerless you are while obliviously crushing you utterly that can feel completely soul-destroying when done properly. But its a thin line to walk. And its definitely not for everyone.

H.P. Lovecraft

One reason is that Lovecraft's writing style can take some getting used to, unless you commonly read pulp literature from the twenties and thirties. He's got a way with a description but he can also be rather florid at times which means if you aren't buying into the general atmosphere of gradually increasing existential terror, it can be a bit of a tough slog.

Fortunately the hit-miss ratio of this stories is fairly good and it looks like they used the first volume to cover most of the "greatest hits", so to speak the second volume covers the longer stories and the third gathers the remaining odds and ends. Thus this works as a primer on whether this will even be your thing. They're not in chronological order but what is interesting is how many tales are really short horror stores, most of which have twist endings that you may or may not see coming but generally closing with a bit of psychological terror as the narrator understands that the world isn't at all what he thinks it is.

But most people are here for the big guns and this volume stacks the deck with them. But what's most interesting about the so-called mythos tales is how often they seem to go on for just a few pages too long. Maybe it's familiarity with the genre he pretty much created but there were times when once the initial premise was established and I knew where it was going, I was antsy to reach the numbing sense of helplessness that was fairly inevitable which makes it even more effective when, in stories like "The Dunwich Horror" despite it feeling overwritten at times, he switches it up and gives you a slightly more optimistic ending.

The best of these stories, by far, for me at least was "The Colour Out of Space" which takes a scenario that you know is going to end poorly and drags you along inch by inch as it gets far worse than you could ever imagine. April Derleth died March 21, George Vanderburgh's blog at Battered Silicon Dispatch Box announced a number of Arkham House titles for and after, none of which had appeared as of April, The announced titles are:.

Exploring HP Lovecraft’s Gothic roots

The title of the imprint was inspired by characters from the Sherlock Holmes stories: Sherlock's brother Mycroft Holmes, and the villain Colonel Moran. Additionally, August Derleth sub-contracted certain books which were nominally published by Arkham House to other publishers including Villiers Publications of England, and Pelligrini and Cudahy of New York. Arkham House publishes book such as H. Lovecraft's The Outsider and Others which is a source of information like other grimoires. Sign In Don't have an account? Start a Wiki. Contents [ show ].


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