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> What are you reading?
TheCheshireKhajiit
post Jun 20 2019, 02:46 AM
Post #1001


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QUOTE(SubRosa @ Jun 19 2019, 07:25 PM) *

QUOTE(TheCheshireKhajiit @ Jun 19 2019, 08:18 PM) *

QUOTE(SubRosa @ Jun 19 2019, 05:25 PM) *

QUOTE(TheCheshireKhajiit @ Jun 19 2019, 05:39 PM) *

Khajiit needs to read more sad.gif
Too.
Many.
Video.
Games.

Oh well. Maybe Khajiit can get some quality reading done on beach vacation this year.

@Subbie- would you care to make a short list of Cthulhu Mythos stuff that you recommend and post it here? Nothing goes better with beach vacations than reading about humankind’s futile struggle with the Great Old Ones and their abominable kin.

Lovecraft's own writing, or non-Lovecraft stories?

Non, Khajiit has plenty of Lovecraft’s work. It would be interesting to see what other writers do with the Mythos.

That is what I thought you meant. I made a list:

If you want to look for individual stories, a lot of these are so old they are public domain:
Robert E Howard
The Fire of Asshurbanipal
The Black Stone
Worms of the Earth
The People Of The Dark
The Tower of the Elephant
The Slithering Shadow


Karl Edward Wagner
Sticks


Stephen King
Jeruselam's Lot (not Salem's Lot)


Michael Shea
Tsathaggoua
Copping Squid
Anthology - The Demiurge (I have not read all of it yet, but I am thinking of buying it)


Robert Bloch
Notebook Found In A Deserted House
The Shambler From The Stars (this was sort of a joke, as two of the characters are stand ins for HP Lovecraft. Lovecraft wrote Haunter of the Dark in response)
The Shadow From The Steeple (this is a sequel to HPL's Haunter of the Dark)


Frank Belknap Long
The Hounds Of Tindalos


Clark Ashton Smith
Ubbo-Sathla
The Hunters From Beyond


Algernon Blackwood
The Wendigo
The Willows


If you just want to buy some anthologies, I recommend these:
The Cthulhu Mythos Megapack (the first one) - This was like 99 cents for Amazon Kindle
Tales Of The Cthuhlu Mythos
World War Cthulhu
She Walks In Shadows (this was a nice collection written by female authors, and many took established characters like Asenath Waite and Lavinia Whately and told stories from their point of view, which is a real breath of fresh air).

Awesome!! This is exactly what Khajiit was looking for! Thank you so much!!


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SubRosa
post Jun 20 2019, 04:45 PM
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I suggest keeping an eye out for authors like Clark Ashton Smith, Robert Bloch, and Frank Belknap Long, who were all members of Lovecraft's 'inner circle' of writing buddies. And Robert E Howard of course. Some of their stories, especially the earlier ones, are copies of Lovecraft's style, and feel like weak imitations. These were literally their first attempts at writing however, before they found their own voices.

Stay away from August Dereleth stories. He never went beyond imitating Lovecraft, and doing it badly.

I know there is a web site out there with all of Clark Ashton Smith's stories. I found a bunch of Howard stories on Project Gutenberg. All of their stuff is public domain now.


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TheCheshireKhajiit
post Jun 20 2019, 04:51 PM
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QUOTE(SubRosa @ Jun 20 2019, 10:45 AM) *

I suggest keeping an eye out for authors like Clark Ashton Smith, Robert Bloch, and Frank Belknap Long, who were all members of Lovecraft's 'inner circle' of writing buddies. And Robert E Howard of course. Some of their stories, especially the earlier ones, are copies of Lovecraft's style, and feel like weak imitations. These were literally their first attempts at writing however, before they found their own voices.

Stay away from August Dereleth stories. He never went beyond imitating Lovecraft, and doing it badly.

I know there is a web site out there with all of Clark Ashton Smith's stories. I found a bunch of Howard stories on Project Gutenberg. All of their stuff is public domain now.

Khajiit shall trust your judgement on this subject. You are pretty much the Lovecraft Guru around these parts, after all. biggrin.gif
Thanks again for the recommendations!


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Lopov
post Jun 20 2019, 06:35 PM
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I finished Duma Key from Stephen King today, I read it on German, so its title was Wahn - a delusion. I recommend it to anyone that likes stories which build up slowly, which take place on a remote island and where there aren't too many characters involved.

I still have ten days of vacations ahead of me, so now it's time for some Poe - The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket, but I read it on German, so it's Der Bericht des Arthur Gordon Pym.

If I finish even this one, then I still have the Blood Meridian (on English this time) from McCarthy with me.


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TheCheshireKhajiit
post Jun 20 2019, 07:39 PM
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QUOTE(Lopov @ Jun 20 2019, 12:35 PM) *

I finished Duma Key from Stephen King today, I read it on German, so its title was Wahn - a delusion. I recommend it to anyone that likes stories which build up slowly, which take place on a remote island and where there aren't too many characters involved.

I still have ten days of vacations ahead of me, so now it's time for some Poe - The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket, but I read it on German, so it's Der Bericht des Arthur Gordon Pym.

If I finish even this one, then I still have the Blood Meridian (on English this time) from McCarthy with me.

Can’t go wrong with Poe! Enjoy!!


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"Family is an odd thing, is it not? Defined by blood, separated by blood, joined by blood. In the end, it's all just blood."
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SubRosa
post Jun 20 2019, 09:30 PM
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I tried to read Arthur Gordon Pym, because of the references to it in At The Mountains Of Madness. But I just could not get through it.

I did read Cask of Amontidillo yesterday, and that was good.


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SubRosa
post Jun 21 2019, 12:33 AM
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I read Who Goes There by John Campbell. I was surprised at how closely Carpenter's The Thing follows it. Like the movie, it is a solid horror story. It prompted me to watch it again.

I also finished another story from Escape Artists today - What Throat by Annie Neugebauer. It was a neat weird fiction tale about two groups of people in the woods. Both are lost, and soon find themselves harassed by wolves, who are for some reason very hostile. At one point they are described as being extremely thin, implying that they are starving. But why they would be starving is never explained.

There is also something else out there in the woods, which the wolves themselves appear to be afraid of. It mimics the sounds of other creatures, but somehow wrong. We never see it, but it is out there, and it is hunting.

Eventually the characters are driven together, and things come to a head. It ends rather ambiguously, but there are dark hints. A lot is left unexplained, which is why I call it a weird tale, rather than a straight up horror story. I think Lovecraft would have liked it.


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TheCheshireKhajiit
post Jun 21 2019, 05:22 AM
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QUOTE(SubRosa @ Jun 20 2019, 06:33 PM) *

I also finished another story from Escape Artists today - What Throat by Annie Neugebauer. It was a neat weird fiction tale about two groups of people in the woods. Both are lost, and soon find themselves harassed by wolves, who are for some reason very hostile. At one point they are described as being extremely thin, implying that they are starving. But why they would be starving is never explained.

There is also something else out there in the woods, which the wolves themselves appear to be afraid of. It mimics the sounds of other creatures, but somehow wrong. We never see it, but it is out there, and it is hunting.

Eventually the characters are driven together, and things come to a head. It ends rather ambiguously, but there are dark hints. A lot is left unexplained, which is why I call it a weird tale, rather than a straight up horror story. I think Lovecraft would have liked it.

That sounds really interesting! I’ll add that one to the list!


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"Family is an odd thing, is it not? Defined by blood, separated by blood, joined by blood. In the end, it's all just blood."
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Winter Wolf
post Jun 23 2019, 08:01 AM
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QUOTE(Lopov @ Jun 20 2019, 06:35 PM) *

I finished Duma Key from Stephen King today, I read it on German, so its title was Wahn - a delusion. I recommend it to anyone that likes stories which build up slowly, which take place on a remote island and where there aren't too many characters involved.


Thanks! I have wanted to read that Stephen King for so long now. I actually did start it two years ago but got sidetracked for some reason or other, lol. It seemed really good- I like the way he got inside the head of the protagonist. I never did reach the island though. laugh.gif

This month I have finished Eldest (book 2) Christopher Paolini. Amazing that he finished the two books by about the age of 21. Rarely can someone so young achieve that. The book was very slow as Eragon learnt the skills of magic but it all came together in the end so I was happy enough.

Next week I will finish River God (Wilbur Smith). It is a blast and I am loving it.


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Decrepit
post Jun 24 2019, 12:32 AM
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At 1410 this afternoon, during a storm triggered elecrical outage, I finsihed my fourth read of Barbara Hambly's The Walls of Air, book two of The Darwath Trilogy. To my surprise I quite enjoyed this second voume, certainly much more so than the first. I'm already several pages into book three, The Armies of Daylight.


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SubRosa
post Jun 27 2019, 10:20 PM
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It's not exactly reading, but it is not music either so I did not put this in the Listening To topic. I have discovered a number of interesting podcasts lately. My starting point was HPPodcraft, which I am almost caught up with.

They mentioned Monster Talk, which I checked out. It seems pretty good. I have listened to a handful of their episodes now. They focus on monsters in pop-culture and folklore (which I suppose is really just yesteryear's pop-culture). They have a skeptic's point of view, so it is mostly them explaining the reality behind these myths and ideas. They also go into how they got created and why. It's basically a science-based discussion about things like dragons, megalodons, faeries, etc... They had an episode about Lovecraft and King Tut that got my interest.

That led me to The Archaeological Fantasies Podcast. They have some crossover episodes with Monstertalk, as they sometimes are covering the same things. They only have a handful of episodes. I have only listened to the Viking Warrior Women one, which was good. It was mostly in response to a new tv show that Megan Fox hosts (I saw a little bit of it a while back, and was not impressed). The podcast was well done though, and I enjoyed the guest - Chelsi Slotten.

This led me to the Women In Archaeology Podcast, which I also found had some interesting podcasts.

That led me to PodCapers, which is a podcast about comics and super movies and superhero geekdom. Chelsi also guest stars in an episode here about the representation of women in comics. Which is what brought me to the podcast. The only downside I have found with PodCapers is that there are no options for a direct mp3 download. I had to find Tube Ninja which will take a url and convert it to an mp3.


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Decrepit
post Jun 29 2019, 12:12 AM
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At 1353 this afternoon I concluded my fourth read of Barbara Hambly's The Armies of Daylight, bringing to an end her Darwath Trilogy. After having trouble acclimating myself to book one, books two and three proved enjoyable if nothing special. I've decided to give another fantasy series from my early days with the genre another go, Katharine Kerr's Deverry Cycle, starting a third read of Daggerspell during supper.


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Decrepit
post Jul 8 2019, 07:53 PM
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At 1228 this afternoon, in the midst of a non-drunken stupor, I concluded my third read of Katharine Kerr's Daggerspell, first book in her Deverry Cycle. As with Hambly, I consider it standard fare. An OK read, but nothing special. That said, I intend to continue on with book two, Darkspell.


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SubRosa
post Jul 10 2019, 10:13 PM
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A few days ago I read The Ballad of Black Tom, by Victor Lavelle. It is based on Lovecraft's story The Horror at Red Hook. It is far better than Lovecraft's tale. Light years better. For starters it is a character-driven piece, with two protagonists whom you can believe are real people, with real motivations, whom you can empathize with. Malone, Lovecraft's original character, is less fleshed out in this regard. But Lavelle still writes him much better than Lovecraft did.

Black Tom is the main character however. He drives the plot. He is a young black man, a hustler, looking to make a buck any way he can. His father is a man who was worn our and physically broken before his time thanks to a life of manual labor. A life Tom refuses to even contemplate, and one cannot blame him.

Lavelle's plot is much tighter than the original as well, dispensing with Lilith, and Suydam marrying, dying on a ship, and his body being brought back and reanimated for some weird ritual underground. Instead Suydam is a scholar who has gotten a glimpse of the mythos, and wants me. He is seduced by the promise of power for those few left behind after the Cthulhuian Apocalypse. An apocalypse he intends on creating.

Speaking of Cthulhu, the creature Suydam is ultimately taking his marching orders from is called The Sleeping God. This shadowy figure is always witnessed under a dark and murky sea. Not to hard to guess who that is, is it?

Tom becomes mixed up with Suydam, and the older man's machinations. But where Suydam is not truly committed, Tom is, thanks to his father being murdered by a racist private detective working for a very scary old woman named Ma Aat. If that sounds like an Egyptian goddess, it should... That, and Malone and the police department's approval of the death, sends Tom over the edge. He goes farther than Suydam ever would. He goes all the way.

I won't give any more away. It is a solid read, with really good characters. The real monsters here are not Cthulhu and the cthultists, but rather racist America. Let's face it, the Mythos cannot really hold a candle to the Evil of Man.

Speaking of the latter I also read Lovecraft Country today by Matt Ruff. I thought it was a full length novel, but instead it is an anthology of mythos stories, with African-American protagonists. I only finished the titular story. Again, racism is the true evil here. Though there are delightfully disturbing impressions of things out in the woods, just out of sight, breaking down trees with their monstrous bulk.

It is another well-written piece, with strong characterizations. Much of the story is spent with the protagonists driving across country. A simple thing for most people, but not for a black person in the 50s. The author makes a great deal of use from The Safe Negro Travel Guide, a fictional version of a very real guide that existed to give African-Americans a list of safe hotels and restaurants they could go to while traveling, as well as warnings on where the stay away from. It is really pathetic that something like this had to exist in 20th century America. But sadly not at all surprising.


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SubRosa
post Jul 16 2019, 11:22 PM
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I finished Lovecraft Country. While it is an collection of short stories, all those stories tie in together to tell a single, larger tale. It could be seen as a single novel. Except that each "chapter" has a different protagonist. It was good. A breath of fresh air in fact. I highly recommend it.

Today I started reading The Girl In Red by Christina Henry. It is a post apocalypse story about a girl, in red, trying to get to her grandmother's house. If it sounds a little like Little Red Riding Hood, well, that is one of the fun things about the story. The author fully embraces it, and it works. Because Red is a very well done character. We spend a great deal of time in her head, and the author breathes her in full, vibrant life.

She is a science fiction fan, and we often find her thinking in terms of what she learned from books and movies. For example: she knows to stay away from roads because that is where the government is going to set up road blocks to corral people. She knows she does not want the government getting her because they will put her in the refugee camp. She knows that during a deadly plague outbreak, a refugee camp is guaranteed to spread the disease to everyone in the camp and kill them all.

Like all the protagonists in Lovecraft Country, she is a person of color, just barely enough for people to constantly stare at her, trying to figure out what category to put her in. She is also an amputee, which was a real nice change in a protagonist as well. So far I am enjoying it immensely.


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