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Subject: Lovecraftian admission rss

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Gunky Gamer
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Despite having played a number of Lovecraft-themed games and being an avid reader, I have never read a single work by Lovecraft. If one were to pick just a single tome, which would it be. I'm not looking for a chapter or a short story, but rather one good Lovecraft book that will give me a sense of what he's all about and provide context for the games.

Thanks!
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J M
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https://www.amazon.com/Complete-Fiction-H-P-Lovecraft/dp/078... Has the lot.
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Look on my works ye mighty and despair
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This may be controversial, but I'm of the view that other people do far more interesting things with the Lovecraftian mythos than Lovecraft himself.

If you like comics, Alan Moore's Yuggoth Cultures and Other Growths is fun.
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Brian Hoare
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Dredging my memory back to my CoC days... It might be hard to find a single long work. I remember getting stuff in collections with maybe a novella at the front and a number of short stories.

I'd suggest one of:
At the Mountains of Madness
The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath
The Case of Charles Dexter Ward

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Todd France
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Why narrow it to a publication when everything's so freely available. If you don't mind reading from a web browser, Dagon Bytes has it all:
http://dagonbytes.com/thelibrary/lovecraft/index.html

If you prefer an e-reader, you can download the complete works here:
http://arkhamarchivist.com/free-complete-lovecraft-ebook-noo...

If you insist on paper, you can get it here for under $20 before shipping:
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/barnes-noble-leatherbound-cl...

For a taste of Lovecraft, today I'd recommend:
The Shadow over Insmouth
The Lurking Fear
Pickman's Model

Ask next week and I'm sure I'll have a different list, but I think those give a sense of the world of Lovecraft inspired games.
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Chris Graves
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I LOVE the theme, even though it is overdone. However, I haven't read any Lovecraft. "Call of Cthulhu" is collecting dust in my Kindle library...
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Paul DeStefano
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Nie pretty book thats sits well on the game shelves:
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/barnes-noble-leatherbound-cl...
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He has written some quite distinct novels both theme wise and regarding style.

If it's got to be a longer one:

The Shadow Over Innsmouth


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Chris Graves
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Geosphere wrote:
Nie pretty book thats sits well on the game shelves:
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/barnes-noble-leatherbound-cl...


$18?!?! I'm down for that!!!
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Paul DeStefano
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voodoochyl wrote:
Geosphere wrote:
Nie pretty book thats sits well on the game shelves:
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/barnes-noble-leatherbound-cl...


$18?!?! I'm down for that!!!


I actually got mine on sale for $10.
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Daniel Davis - Personal
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Abiezer Coppe wrote:
This may be controversial, but I'm of the view that other people do far more interesting things with the Lovecraftian mythos than Lovecraft himself.

If you like comics, Alan Moore's Yuggoth Cultures and Other Growths is fun.


Totally agree. I have an entire book shelf devoted to weird fiction, ranging from Lord Dunsany to Thomas Ligotti, and not a single solitary work of Lovecraft to be found.

His greatest contribution to the genre were his ideas and his lax views on copyright, not his writing.
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Daniel Davis - Personal
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esirof wrote:
Despite having played a number of Lovecraft-themed games and being an avid reader, I have never read a single work by Lovecraft. If one were to pick just a single tome, which would it be. I'm not looking for a chapter or a short story, but rather one good Lovecraft book that will give me a sense of what he's all about and provide context for the games.

Thanks!


Most of the stuff in the games that you are enjoying was only ever briefly touched upon by Lovecraft. Instead, the stuff you are enjoying is primarily based on the larger mythos tales created and elaborated upon by a host of authors working within and beyond the Lovecraft circle.

Check out the Chaosium books edited by Robert M. Price. The mythos Cycle books contain Lovecraft's stories, but they also contain the stories by all the other authors that have made the mythos the pop culture power that it is today.
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David Allen
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Very much agree with "The Shadow Over Innsmouth" as a starter. In terms of sheer horror, atmosphere, AND an introduction to some of the basic tropes of the C'thulhu Mythos, this is his best--a longish short story (maybe, technically, a novella). If you read this one, "The Call of C'thulhu", "The Dunwich Horror," and "At the Mountains of Madness," you can consider yourself more than adequately "schooled" in the original, canonical Lovecraft mythos. After that, there are many, MANY stories in this world by countless writers, from Stephen King to Neil Gaiman to Charles Stross to Joyce Carol Oates. Some of them are far better in terms of just sheer writing than HPL--he was kind of a hack. A prolific, deeply racist, conservative, antiquity-obsessed, neurotic, hag-ridden hack with a brilliant imagination. If you want to go to the source, start with these, all easily and freely available.

My current favorite contemporary "Lovecraftian" works are Victor LaValle's "The Ballad of Black Tom," followed by Elizabeth Bear's "Shoggoths in Bloom," both of which deal head-on with the endemic racism in HPL's works in very different but equally brilliant ways.
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Gunky Gamer
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Thanks for the rapid-fire responses. I think that what I am after is what Habilis described, above, as "an introduction to some of the basic tropes of the C'thulhu Mythos," rather than a deep dive.

I'll start with Innsmouth and see where that takes me.
 
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Cornixt
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When I was at the age where I read all the horror books I could get my hands on, Lovecraft was the one author I failed to track down. His stuff simply wasn't available in any book shops and online sales were in their infancy. So my first introductions to the Cthulhu mythos was via Brian Lumley's Titus Crow series, which I enjoyed.

Now they are easily available everywhere, but my reading has slowed right down, so I still haven't read any.
 
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S Squidpigge
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pseudotheist wrote:
Why narrow it to a publication when everything's so freely available. If you don't mind reading from a web browser, Dagon Bytes has it all:
http://dagonbytes.com/thelibrary/lovecraft/index.html

If you prefer an e-reader, you can download the complete works here:
http://arkhamarchivist.com/free-complete-lovecraft-ebook-noo...

If you insist on paper, you can get it here for under $20 before shipping:
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/barnes-noble-leatherbound-cl...

For a taste of Lovecraft, today I'd recommend:
The Shadow over Insmouth
The Lurking Fear
Pickman's Model

Ask next week and I'm sure I'll have a different list, but I think those give a sense of the world of Lovecraft inspired games.


Thanks for that link to the kindle e-book. I have a ton of the small, older paperbacks that I picked up at a used book store when I was a teen, but they are starting to show their age so nice to have them on a kindle.
 
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Gunky Gamer
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pseudotheist wrote:
Why narrow it to a publication when everything's so freely available.

If you prefer an e-reader, you can download the complete works here:
http://arkhamarchivist.com/free-complete-lovecraft-ebook-noo...

[/url]



Now THAT was a helpful response!
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Brian Franzman
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I'd argue that some of Lovecraft's shorter stories are a good way to see if you like his style and substance with "no obligation to buy in" to the longer ones. Try:

From Beyond
The Outsider
Pickman's Model
The Unnameable
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Resist the Kakistocracy
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D_Davis wrote:
Abiezer Coppe wrote:
This may be controversial, but I'm of the view that other people do far more interesting things with the Lovecraftian mythos than Lovecraft himself.

If you like comics, Alan Moore's Yuggoth Cultures and Other Growths is fun.


Totally agree. I have an entire book shelf devoted to weird fiction, ranging from Lord Dunsany to Thomas Ligotti, and not a single solitary work of Lovecraft to be found.

His greatest contribution to the genre were his ideas and his lax views on copyright, not his writing.

This guy needs to post a weird tales "greatest hits" recommended reading list...

 
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John James
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esirof wrote:
Despite having played a number of Lovecraft-themed games and being an avid reader, I have never read a single work by Lovecraft. If one were to pick just a single tome, which would it be. I'm not looking for a chapter or a short story, but rather one good Lovecraft book that will give me a sense of what he's all about and provide context for the games.

Thanks!

Most of HPL's work is shorter stories, he was selling to pulp magazines who required this. Some of the longer stories were rejected and didn't see publication until later in life or even after his death. Basically, pick up anything you can find, there are various anthologies.
 
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Daniel Davis - Personal
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Adverb wrote:
D_Davis wrote:
Abiezer Coppe wrote:
This may be controversial, but I'm of the view that other people do far more interesting things with the Lovecraftian mythos than Lovecraft himself.

If you like comics, Alan Moore's Yuggoth Cultures and Other Growths is fun.


Totally agree. I have an entire book shelf devoted to weird fiction, ranging from Lord Dunsany to Thomas Ligotti, and not a single solitary work of Lovecraft to be found.

His greatest contribution to the genre were his ideas and his lax views on copyright, not his writing.

This guy needs to post a weird tales "greatest hits" recommended reading list...



Oh boy...that's a tall order.

My favorites are:

A. Merritt's "The People of the Pit"
Lord Dunsany's The Gods of Pagana
Arthur Machen's "The Great God Pan"
Robert W. Chamber's "The Repairer of Reputations" - this is probably my favorite short story ever written
Michael Cisco's The Divinity Student
Thomas Ligotti's "The Red Tower" and "The Frolic"
David Morell's "Orange is for Anguish, Blue for Insanity"
Lovecraft "Rats in the Walls"

A really great collection is The Weird: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories, edited by the Vandermeers. Over 1,000 pages of great weird tales. Good place to start to find some favorites to explore more.
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Brian Rayburn
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Go to the Google Play store and search for 'Cthulhoid'. It has pretty much every one of his works, and it's free.
 
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John Prewitt
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esirof wrote:
Despite having played a number of Lovecraft-themed games and being an avid reader, I have never read a single work by Lovecraft. If one were to pick just a single tome, which would it be. I'm not looking for a chapter or a short story, but rather one good Lovecraft book that will give me a sense of what he's all about and provide context for the games.

Thanks!


I tried reading Lovecraft after playing many Lovecraft games... probably the worst books I've ever read. I read Call of Cthulhu and Shadow of Innsmouth and the pure horror was not what was in the book but actually reading the book itself... I tossed Shadow over Innsmouth on the grill to burn it away from this material plane after I was done with it because of the agony it caused me.

Everything is horrible... ALWAYS! Why? I don't know... it just is. (every Lovecraft description of anything).
 
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Jim Jackson

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Quote:
probably the worst books I've ever read. I read Call of Cthulhu and Shadow of Innsmouth and the pure horror was not what was in the book but actually reading the book itself...


Absolutely agree.
 
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Resist the Kakistocracy
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"A Colder War" is a good Cthulhu-inspired novella.

Project Koschei...

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