LOVECRAFT’S MONSTERS did a great job creating stories inspired by Lovercraft’s creatures

Photo: Scott Edelman

, Eric Mesa enjoys his first exposure to the Lovecraft Mythos with Ellen Datlow’s LOVECRAFT’S MONSTERS.

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

As usual for an anthology I will post my status updates per story. Before I get to that, I wanted to note that this is the first time I’ve read anything Lovecraftian. (There were Eldritch horrors in the first couple Discworld books, but I had no idea what that was at the time) I think these authors did a great job creating stories based on or inspired by his creatures. If, like me, you’re a Lovecraft neophyte, be sure to read the introduction as it helps explain some of the concepts. And now the stories:

“The Same Deep Waters as You – Lovecraft as a metaphor for the war on terror, gitmo, considering others as less than human, etc. Also, what a horrific ending. HOLY MOLY!

“A Quarter to Three : Fun, more unpredictable on its own. But at this point in the anthology I have a good feel for what Innsamouth means.

“The Dappled Thing – I think this is my favorite story so far. A steampunk journey into the jungle to find the daughter of some important Lord. Mostly written in a great Victorian manner as they trek through the jungle. The Lovecraftian element is almost absent until the end when it makes for a chilling ending.

“The Bleeding Shadow” – “gave the hotel the gander. It was nice looking if you were blind in one eye and couldn’t see out the other.” – I love phrasing like that.

A noir Private Eye with Lovecraftian elements. Also, dunno if I’ve just been living under a rock, but never read a noir private eye story with an African American as the PI in the 50s. It was a neat change from the usual while still keeping lots of the tropes.”

Ellen Datlow binged on blintzes with Scott Edelman on the podcast EATING THE FANTASTIC.

My wife has been attending the New Jersey Romance Writers Convention for decades, and for many years, I’ve been tagging along, using that trip as an excuse to head into Manhattan and hang with friends. The most recent trip was different from all the rest, though, in that now, I have a podcast (one which you can help grow bigger and better via your Patreon support), which means you can eavesdrop on all those lunches and dinners.

This first to be recorded this visit took place at the Ukranian restaurant Veselka, which turns out more than 3,000 pierogi each day, and has been around since 1954. My guest that afternoon was editor Ellen Datlow, who for more than 35 years has brought readers amazing stories in magazines such as Omni, on sites such as SCI FI Fiction, and in anthologies such as Fearful Symmetries, The Doll Collection, and more than 90 others.

We discussed why reading slush is relaxing, which editors she wanted to emulate when she began editing, how she winnows down her favorite stories for her Year’s Best anthologies, the complexities of navigating friendships when making editorial decisions, how Ed Bryant challenged her to become a better editor, and much more.

In an interview with Stephanie M. Wytovich at JOIN ME IN THE
MADHOUSE, Erik Hofstatter lists the books on his to-be-read pile.

I’m constantly
drunk on Gary McMahon, but these books dominate my bedside cabinet:
ATLANTIS by Anne Rice, A LONG DECEMBER by Richard Chizmar, CLIVE
BARKER: THE DARK FANTASTIC by Douglas E. Winter, NIGHTMARES: A NEW DECADE OF MODERN HORROR by Ellen Datlow and so on. You could built an
igloo with my TBR pile.

For more info about LOVECRAFT’S MONSTERS, visit the Tachyon page.

Cover and illustrations by John Coulthart

For more info about NIGHTMARES: A NEW DECADE OF MODERN HORROR, visit the Tachyon page.

Cover by Nihil

Design by Elizabeth Story