Cover image for The new annotated H. P. Lovecraft
Title:
The new annotated H. P. Lovecraft
Author:
Lovecraft, H. P. (Howard Phillips), 1890-1937., author.
Uniform Title:
Short stories. Selections
Edition:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Liveright Publishing Corporation, a division of W.W. Norton & Company, [2014]
Physical Description:
lxx, 852 pages : illustrations (some color), maps (some color), genealogical table ; 27 cm
Language:
English
Contents:
Dagon -- Statement of Randolph Carter -- Beyond the wall of sleep -- Nyarlathotep -- Picture in the house -- Herbert West : reanimator -- Nameless city -- Hound -- Festival -- Unnamable -- Call of Cthulhu -- Silver key -- Case of Charles Dexter Ward -- Colour out of space -- Dunwich horror -- Whisperer in darkness -- At the mountains of madness -- Shadow over Innsmouth -- Dreams in the witch house -- Thing on the doorstep -- Shadow out of time -- Haunter of the dark --
ISBN:
9780871404534
Format :
Book

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Library
Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Status
Central Library PS3523.O833 A6 2014 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area
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Summary

Summary

"With an increasing distance from the twentieth century...the New England poet, author, essayist, and stunningly profuse epistolary Howard Phillips Lovecraft is beginning to emerge as one of that tumultuous period's most critically fascinating and yet enigmatic figures," writes Alan Moore in his introduction to The New Annotated H. P. Lovecraft. Despite this nearly unprecedented posthumous trajectory, at the time of his death at the age of forty-six, Lovecraft's work had appeared only in dime-store magazines, ignored by the public and maligned by critics. Now well over a century after his birth, Lovecraft is increasingly being recognized as the foundation for American horror and science fiction, the source of "incalculable influence on succeeding generations of writers of horror fiction" (Joyce Carol Oates).

In this volume, Leslie S. Klinger reanimates Lovecraft with clarity and historical insight, charting the rise of the erstwhile pulp writer, whose rediscovery and reclamation into the literary canon can be compared only to that of Poe or Melville. Weaving together a broad base of existing scholarship with his own original insights, Klinger appends Lovecraft's uncanny oeuvre and Kafkaesque life story in a way that provides context and unlocks many of the secrets of his often cryptic body of work.

Over the course of his career, Lovecraft--"the Copernicus of the horror story" (Fritz Leiber)--made a marked departure from the gothic style of his predecessors that focused mostly on ghosts, ghouls, and witches, instead crafting a vast mythos in which humanity is but a blissfully unaware speck in a cosmos shared by vast and ancient alien beings. One of the progenitors of "weird fiction," Lovecraft wrote stories suggesting that we share not just our reality but our planet, and even a common ancestry, with unspeakable, godlike creatures just one accidental revelation away from emerging from their epoch of hibernation and extinguishing both our individual sanity and entire civilization.

Following his best-selling The New Annotated Sherlock Holmes, Leslie S. Klinger collects here twenty-two of Lovecraft's best, most chilling "Arkham" tales, including "The Call of Cthulhu," At the Mountains of Madness, "The Whisperer in Darkness," "The Shadow Over Innsmouth," "The Colour Out of Space," and others. With nearly 300 illustrations, including full-color reproductions of the original artwork and covers from Weird Tales and Astounding Stories, and more than 1,000 annotations, this volume illuminates every dimension of H. P. Lovecraft and stirs the Great Old Ones in their millennia of sleep.


Author Notes

Howard Phillips Lovecraft, 1890 - 1937 H. P. Lovecraft was born on August 20, 1890 in Providence, Rhode Island. His mother was Sarah Susan Phillips Lovecraft and his father was Winfield Scott Lovecraft, a traveling salesman for Gorham & Co. Silversmtihs. Lovecraft was reciting poetry at the age of two and when he was three years old, his father suffered a mental breakdown and was admitted to Butler Hospital. He spent five years there before dying on July 19, 1898 of paresis, a form of neurosyphillis. During those five years, Lovecraft was told that his father was paralyzed and in a coma, which was not the case.

His mother, two aunts and grandfather were now bringing up Lovecraft. He suffered from frequent illnesses as a boy, many of which were psychological. He began writing between the ages of six and seven and, at about the age of eight, he discovered science. He began to produce the hectographed journals, "The Scientific Gazette" (1899-1907) and "The Rhode Island Journal of Astronomy" (1903-07). His first appearance in print happened, in 1906, when he wrote a letter on an astronomical matter to The Providence Sunday Journal. A short time later, he began writing a monthly astronomy column for The Pawtuxet Valley Gleaner - a rural paper. He also wrote columns for The Providence Tribune (1906-08), The Providence Evening News (1914-18), The Asheville (N.C.) Gazette-News (1915).

In 1904, his grandfather died and the family suffered severe financial difficulties, which forced him and his mother to move out of their Victorian home. Devastated by this, he apparently contemplated suicide. In 1908, before graduating from high school, he suffered a nervous breakdown. He didn't receive a diploma and failed to get into Brown University, both of which caused him great shame. Lovecraft was not heard from for five years, re-emerging because of a letter he wrote in protest to Fred Jackson's love story in The Argosy. His letter was published in 1913 and caused great controversy, which was noted by Edward F. Daas, President of the United Amateur Press Association (UAPA). Daas invited Lovecraft to join the UAPA, which he did in early 1914. He eventually became President and Official Editor of the UAPA and served briefly as President of the rival National Amateur Press Association (NAPA). He published thirteen issues of his own paper, The Conservative (1915-23) and contributed poetry and essays to other journals. He also wrote some fiction which titles include "The Beast in the Cave" (1905), "The Alchemist" (1908), "The Tomb" and "Dagon" (1917).

In 1919, Lovecraft's mother was deteriorating, mentally and physically, and was admitted to Butler Hospital. On May 24, 1921, his mother died from a gall bladder operation. While attending an amateur journalism convention in Boston, Lovecraft met his future wife Sonia Haft Greene, a Russian Jew. They were married on March 3, 1924 and Lovecraft moved to her apartment in Brooklyn. Sonia had a shop on Fifth Avenue that went bankrupt. In 1925, Sonia went to Cleveland for a job and Lovecraft moved to a smaller apartment in the Red Hook district of Brooklyn. In 1926, he decided to move back to Providence. Lovecraft had his aunts bar his wife, Sonia, from going to Providence to start a business because he couldn't have the stigma of a tradeswoman wife. They were divorced in 1929.

After his return to Providence, he wrote his greatest fiction, which included the titles "The Call of Cthulhu" (1926), "At the Mountains of Madness" (1931), and "The Shadow Out of Time" (1934-35). In 1932, his aunt, Mrs. Clark, died; and he moved in with his other aunt, Mrs. Gamwell, in 1933. Suffering from cancer of the intestine, Lovecraft was admitted to Jane Brown Memorial Hospital and on March 15, 1937 he died.

(Bowker Author Biography)


Reviews 2

Booklist Review

H(oward) P(hillips) Lovecraft (1890-1937) posthumously earned a reputation for outstanding short story writing in the horror genre. The irony is that, during his lifetime, he appeared in print only in the so-called pulp magazines and appreciation for his work was modest. But as expressed in Alan Moore's on-target introduction here, in the years following Lovecraft's death, the mesmerizing power of his language and imagination gained him a wider and more enthusiastic readership than he would have ever imagined for himself. The foreword by Leslie S. Klinger is a highly informative history of the horror genre and a trenchant summary of Lovecraft's life, all of which preface the primary section of this giant book, a presentation of 22 of Lovecraft's most significant stories, each fully annotated with identifications of people and places, definitions of unfamiliar vocabulary, and background explanations of mentioned literary works. This impressive book can be used two ways, either for checkout in circulating horror collections or for in-house-only reference.--Hooper, Brad Copyright 2014 Booklist


Publisher's Weekly Review

Klinger's most controversial claim in this new compilation is that the late horror maestro Lovecraft's work encapsulates the fears of the average man. Stories such as "Beyond the Wall of Sleep"¿ and "At the Mountains of Madness"¿ seem at best tangentially related to the unifying theme of the "Arkham cycle"¿ that Klinger advances. His outline of the historical evolution of horror literature provides useful insight into the influences on Lovecraft's style and the evolution of the pulp magazine industry that gave him a literary outlet. The biographical entry skims the surface of a complex individual's life, but the presence of several apparently clashing views illustrates the difficulty and ultimate futility of rendering a single verdict on a writer. Despite Klinger's stated goal of expanding Lovecraft's audience, the exhaustive historical background and biographical information he supplies (familiar to readers of 2004's The New Annotated Sherlock Holmes) will appeal more to the fan than the neophyte, and with Lovecraft's 125th birthday just around the corner, in 2015, committed enthusiasts may prefer to discuss new scholarly analysis rather than revisit familiar ground. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.


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