Thursday, February 6, 2014

Throwback Thursday: Review: The Classic Horror Stories by H.P. Lovecraft edited by Roger Luckhurst

Throwback Thursday is a feature that will appear sporadically. In this case, it is to spotlight a book that could be considered a sort of complimentary volume to the Waiting on Wednesday feature of Lovecraft's Monsters edited by Ellen Datlow.

The Classic Horror Stories by H.P. Lovecraft edited by Roger Luckhurst was published May 9, 2013 by Oxford University Press.

There is a fantastic biography to start the reader out. Then it is followed by a selection of  9 stories that follow the Cthulu mythos. These have the author's notes in them as well giving additional interesting material. Then, there are also excerpts from his critical essay "Supernatural Horror in Literature."

The stories that appear in this collection originally appeared in the pulp magazines. The versions in this book are the edited versions that appeared there rather than the versions that Lovecraft and many scholars prefer.

However, this book presents a wonderful opportunity for new readers of H.P. Lovecraft to become acquainted with his writing. Then they will begin to see his influences on other writers and film makers etc.

I liked it myself because I didn't know the half of what was in the biography. And while I had read Lovecraft before, I hadn't read the complete Cthulu mythos. I even found many of the author's notes interesting rather than distracting. All in all, it's an interesting book. It's by no means a complete catalog of his works. Many of them are longer than short story length. To be honest, I struggled a little bit to get through some of Lovecraft's language to finish the story in the longer pieces. I gave it 4 out of 5 stars.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.

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