Tuesday, December 01, 2009
Tales From the Bookshelf
Today I go to my prize bookcase for a book to review. Appropriately enough, it is a collection of horror tales from H.P.Lovecraft.
Dagon and Other Macabre Tales
Publisher: Arkham House Publishers (October 1986)
August Derleth brought together some of Lovecraft's greatest tales in three wonderful hardback volumes. I was fortunate to discover these volumes for sale in a bookstore near Pike's Market in Seattle, WA in 1993.
This volume contains twenty-eight stories and bonus tales. You will find many that have made their way into motion pictures, such as "From Beyond," "Herbert West - Reanimator," and "The Unnamable." It boasts both tales of horror and of the Dreamlands. Lovecraft even ventured out of the horror realm in my favorite, "The Walls of Eryx," a creepy science-fiction story.
Lovecraft has a unique style and the fact that most of his work was written in the 1920's makes the prose a bit more challenging to read. However, hs is eloquent without being over-wordy. Lovecraft likes to build the tension and then drop the bomb at the very end of the story. While some of the stories may not seem so horrific in this day and age, most still hold their shock value.
The book has been revised & corrected many times, and the cover art has changed over the years, but this collection, along with The Dunwich Horror and Others and At the Mountains of Madness and Other Novels, is a must-have for any horror fan! If you want to discover the real master of horror, you must read Lovecraft's tales...
All three books - 9 & 1/2 stars out of 10.
Not perfect, but darn near close!