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The Best of H.P. Lovecraft: Bloodcurdling…
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The Best of H.P. Lovecraft: Bloodcurdling Tales of Horror and the Macabre (original 1963; edição 2002)

por H.P. Lovecraft

MembrosCríticasPopularidadeAvaliação médiaMenções
2,679254,111 (4.19)31
This is the collection that true fans of horror fiction have been waiting for: sixteen of H.P. Lovecraft's most horrifying visions, including Lovecraft's masterpiece, The Shadow Out of Time--the shocking revelation of the mysterious forces that hold all mankind in their fearsome grip. H.P. Lovecraft has yet to be surpassed as the Twentieth Century's greatest practitioner of the classic horror tale.… (mais)
Membro:thegreyhermit
Título:The Best of H.P. Lovecraft: Bloodcurdling Tales of Horror and the Macabre
Autores:H.P. Lovecraft
Informação:Ballantine Books, Paperback, 406 pages
Colecções:A sua biblioteca
Avaliação:****
Etiquetas:ghost-stories

Pormenores da obra

The Best of H. P. Lovecraft: Bloodcurdling Tales of Horror and the Macabre por H. P. Lovecraft (1963)

  1. 30
    The Return Of The Sorcerer: The Best Of Clark Ashton Smith por Clark Ashton Smith (artturnerjr)
    artturnerjr: Lovecraft and Smith had many of the same philisophical and stylistic concerns, but Smith's probably the better writer of the two (or at least the better stylist).
  2. 21
    The Innswich Horror por Edward Lee (Scottneumann)
  3. 10
    The King in Yellow por Robert W. Chambers (Arboreus)
    Arboreus: Whom may have found the concept of documents which condemmn the reader to a dark fate appealing, will find in some of the stories of this work a bit of the inspiration behind Lovecraft. Reader beware, as The King in Yellow is not something to tread lightly.
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» Ver também 31 menções

Mostrando 1-5 de 25 (seguinte | mostrar todos)
A wonderful compilation of his stories. This compilation includes such tales as The Call of Cthulhu, the Dunwich Horror and Shadow over Innsmouth. HP Lovecraft has a way of writing that in my personal opinion is damn near perfect. His sentence structure and word usage is on point in every paragraph. Absolutely fabulous writer and absolutely fabulous stories. I would recommend this to anyone! ( )
  SumisBooks | Oct 21, 2019 |
Knowledge brings pain. Madness offers release.

Lovecraft’s stories focus on the unknown, the alien, and the otherworldly. His stories confront everyday people with this hidden world, sometimes directly, more often through the accounts of the less fortunate. In Lovecraft’s world knowledge is a burden that drives many to madness. He is perhaps one of the most skilled writers when it comes to unreliable and unstable narrators; however, he also has shortcomings.

His stories start slowly and with excessive backstory. They only begin to achieve real momentum at the midpoint, before ending abruptly. He often hints at a larger narrative that remains unresolved. Of course this lack of resolution is also part of his general theme, there is no happy ending, and only those ignorant of the truth can live happily.

Within his own writing he is quite repetitive. His protagonists are often generic and somewhat flat, and his descriptions tend to be excessive, particularly when describing architecture. He has a bad habit of summarizing a scene rather than showing the reader what happened.

In spite of that he remains an accomplished author in the realm of horror, and a good read for anyone with the patience to persevere through the slow starts.

+Strong Suspense
+Strong Ideas
+Strong Descriptions
-Weak Plot
-Slow

2.5/5

The Rats in the Wall
A story of an ancient site, and a terrible secret. A prime example of “knowledge as a burden”. A slow mystery, this is one of the stronger ones in the anthology.

+Strong Descriptions
+Strong Suspense
*Slow but strong plot

3/5

The Picture in the House
A strange shack in the wilderness, with a strange owner.

+Strong Characters
-Weak Plot
-Slow

1.5/5

The Outsider
An unreliable narrator has been imprisoned for so long he doesn’t even remember why.

+Strong Descriptions
-Weak Plot
-Slow

1.5/5

Pickman’s Model
An artist with a unique gift for creating frightening images.

+Strong Descriptions
-abrupt ending
-slow

2/5

In the Vault
A dry dark comedy about a mortician.

+Strong Suspense
*Dark Humor
-Simple Plot

1.5/5

The Silver Key
A philosophical dialogue on the nature of reality, without the familiar fears of most of Lovecraft’s work.

+Strong Ideas
-Weak Plot
-Slow

1/5

The Music of Erich Zann
A strange neighbor who plays otherworldly music, and the secret behind it.

+Strong Descriptions
*Interesting Ideas
-Weak Plot

2/5

The Call of Cthulhu
Three stories stitched together by the narrator, with all the tropes of a good Lovecraft story; the occult, monsters, and conspiracy.

+Strong Characters
+Strong Descriptions
*Strong but Fragmented Plot

3/5

The Dunwich Horror
A slow story about a peculiar family, gradually growing into a supernatural thriller.

+Strong Plot
-Weak Characters
-Slow

2.5/5

The Whisperer in the Darkness
Through correspondence two characters unravel a local legend, of monsters living in the hills.

+Strong Plot
+Strong Characters
-Slow

2.5/5

The Colour Out of Space
A strange meteorite transforms the land and lives around it

+Strong Plot
-Weak Characters
-Weak Writing

2/5

The Haunter of the Dark
An artist is drawn to an abandoned building, where an ancient power sleeps.

+Strong Descriptions
-Weak Characters
-Weak Plot

1.5/5

The Thing on the Doorstep
Lovecraft’s take on an overbearing wife.

+Strong Characters
*Interesting Plot
-Slow

2/5

The Shadow over Innsmouth
A tourist learns a secret the town will kill to keep.

+Strong Plot
+Strong Setting
+Strong Narration
+Strong Suspense
-Lengthy Descriptions

3.5/5

The Dreams in the Witch-House
A mathematician tries to combine math and the occult, but is troubled by feverish dreams.

+Strong Descriptions
-Weak Writing
-Slow

1.5/5

The Shadow Out of Time
After five years of amnesia the protagonist regains himself. His friends share strange stories about his behavior, prompting him to investigate, and uncover a most otherworldly answer.

+Strong Ideas
-Weak Writing
-Slow

1.5/5 ( )
  adamg211 | Oct 21, 2016 |
“Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn”Try saying that backward (or forward, which is equally challenging).

H.P. Lovecraft is definitely the granddaddy of “Cosmic Horror” and Weird Fiction. He is often mentioned in science fiction / fantasy / horror related websites and forums, not to mention myriad other kinds of websites. Reading fans raving about his works and seeing the numerous fan arts online make many of us genre fiction enthusiasts want to start getting into his fiction to see what the fuss is all about. I suspect a lot of first-time readers of Lovecraft are disappointed at what they find. The way he goes about telling his stories is very idiosyncratic, he has a tendency to overwrite and be highly verbose. This can be very disappointing and off-putting if you choose the wrong story to start with and you were expecting a quick thrilling read.

This is where the unwieldy titled The Best of H.P. Lovecraft: Bloodcurdling Tales of Horror and the Macabre comes in. This is a “greatest hits” type of anthology which is ideal for the uninitiated and of course fans who want their favorite stories all in one book. It does not include the novellas [b:At the Mountains of Madness|32767|At the Mountains of Madness|H.P. Lovecraft|https://d.gr-assets.com/books/1388341769s/32767.jpg|17342821] and [b:The Case of Charles Dexter Ward|129327|The Case of Charles Dexter Ward|H.P. Lovecraft|https://d.gr-assets.com/books/1385837737s/129327.jpg|124552], which is just as well as these are not so suitable starting places. I think it is better to get used to (and forgive) the author’s verbiage and appreciate the otherwise awesomeness of his stories.

A lot of the stories tend to be supernatural / sci-fi hybrids with witches and wizards summoning aliens from another planet or dimension by magic. Here is my quick run-through of the stories in this collection:

Introduction by [a:Robert Bloch|12540|Robert Bloch|https://d.gr-assets.com/authors/1208225228p2/12540.jpg] - Best known for [b:Psycho|156427|Psycho|Robert Bloch|https://d.gr-assets.com/books/1393286878s/156427.jpg|3279468], one of his protégés. A good intro to Lovecraft the man and his fiction. Don’t skip it.

The Rats in the Walls - As your very first Lovecraft story his convoluted prose style may take a while to get used to. The climax is spectacular but also a bit of a mess in the narrative department. The story is great though, worth a reread later on.

The Picture in the House - The book that drips blood; where the useless protagonist runs away just when things are heating up to a critical point, next time stay at home old chap! Nice, short and atmospheric though.

The Outsider - A story of self-discovery. Great twist at the end. Awesome in a most eldritch way.

Pickman’s Model - You are in for a treat with this one. Classic Lovecraft, one of his most popular and enduring stories. The colloquial writing style is rather unusual for Lovecraft I think. Possibly his most accessible story and a great starting point for new readers.

In the Vault - Break a leg! An amusing and rather inconsequential little story.

The Silver Key - Time traveling shenanigan featuring some Lovecraft’s patented awful faux-hillbilly dialog. A Twilight Zone-ish story.

The Music of Erich Zann - Featuring a man who is attracted by weird music. Next time just buy a Yoko Ono album. Actually one of HPL’s most popular stories. Doesn’t really do much for me, unfortunately. The bloody protagonist does a runner again just when things are getting interesting.

The Call of Cthulhu - The narrative is a little fragmented and the story is rather incohesive, but there is some tremendous world building going on in this story. The creepy atmosphere is very well done and for once the monster actually shows up in all its glory (HPL’s monsters generally prefer to lurk and mess with your head). This story is also often cited as evidence of his racism. According to [a:Robert Bloch|12540|Robert Bloch|https://d.gr-assets.com/authors/1208225228p2/12540.jpg] Lovecraft did become more mellow and tolerant of foreigners after marriage.

The Dunwich Horror - This is what newcomers to Lovecraft are probably looking for. A great, thrilling and creepy tale. That Wilbur Whateley reminds me of Damian in the Omen movies a bit to begin with. He changes later on though (not for the better of course)

The Whisperer in Darkness - Gives new meaning to “the Kodak moment”, talk about product placement! A very creepy story featuring weird floating monstrosities and a whispery ET.

The Colour Out of Space - This! Ladies and gentlemen. This! Lovecraft’s best story (IMO). For a change, the story is pure sci-fi, no chanting monks, witches, voodoo or Cthulhu. The poor Gardners’ family literal disintegration thanks to a meteor falling on their farm will surely give you the heebie-jeebies.

The Haunter of the Dark - Set in Italy. The story of a weird black church. If you spot a copy of the Necronomicon by “Mad Arab” Abdul Alhazred in a church head for the exit immediately.

The Thing on the Doorstep - This also! What a great body swap story, much better than Freaky Friday. Featuring the eponymous Thing on the Doorstep whose catchphrase is “Glub!”. Brrrr!

The Shadow Over Innsmouth - Oh my Gawd! A blasphemously amazing story of some very fishy folks. Set mainly in the creepiest town ever. Featuring a very cool twist.

The Dreams in the Witch-House Featuring a witch, a rat with a man’s face and a sort of hyperspace bypass. The narrative is a little rambling for my taste, but a great story is embedded in there.

The Shadow Out of Time - Another story of involuntary body swap. The Great Race aliens are almost benign by HPL’s standard, unauthorized body swap notwithstanding. It is a longish story (70 pages or so), it starts off very fascinating, but Lovecraft goes into his rambling mode in the second half of the story. An example of his overwriting. Still a great story though, one that will stay with you.

Due to his verbiage, thin characters and appalling dialogs Lovecraft’s dissenters often dismiss him as a bad writer. If so he is the most excellent bad writer of all time. The thing about his writing is that while some of the stories will have you nodding off while wading through the long winded prose, but once you get to the end of the stories you realize that they are actually quite good. Also when he is on top form, such as in The Colour Out of Space where the narrative is very evocative and the story is just right, he is unbeatable.

_______________________________

Notes:

The website Cthulhuchick has kindly put together a free e-book of the Complete Works of H.P. Lovecraft in several formats. The download link is on the main front page.

You can read any and all of Lovecraft's stories online at Dagonbytes.

Download links for free Lovecraft audiobooks. ( )
1 vote apatt | Dec 26, 2015 |
The master tells six tales of horror with a big side of creepy. Each tale creepier than the last. ( )
  caanderson | Mar 5, 2015 |
Entertaining enough, but account after account of earnest protagonists' encounters with stuff pertaining to Cthulu got old after a while. The best story in this collection? "The Rats in the Walls"-- where no Old Ones are to be found. ( )
  KatrinkaV | Nov 1, 2013 |
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Ballantine Books/Del Rey/Science Fiction Book Club edition
ISBN: 0345294688; 9780345294685; 0345350804; 9780345350800
Contents: Rats in the walls -- Picture in the house -- Outsider -- Pickman's model -- In the vault -- Silver key -- Music of Erich Zann --Call of Cthulhu -- Dunwich horror -- Whisperer in darkness -- Colour out of space -- Haunter of the dark -- Thing on the doorstep -- Shadow over Innsmouth -- Dreams in the witch-house -- Shadow out of time

Please do not combine with editions with differing contents.
CreateSpace edition
ISBN: 9781453875100; 1453875107
Contents: The call of Cthulhu -- The Dunwich horror -- The whisperer in darkness -- The thing on the doorstep -- The shadow over Innsmouth -- The shadow out of time

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This is the collection that true fans of horror fiction have been waiting for: sixteen of H.P. Lovecraft's most horrifying visions, including Lovecraft's masterpiece, The Shadow Out of Time--the shocking revelation of the mysterious forces that hold all mankind in their fearsome grip. H.P. Lovecraft has yet to be surpassed as the Twentieth Century's greatest practitioner of the classic horror tale.

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