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Necronomicon: The Best Weird Tales of H. P. Lovecraft (2008)

av H. P. Lovecraft

Andra författare: Les Edwards (Illustratör), Stephen Jones (Redaktör), Stephen Jones (Efterord), E. Hoffman Price (Författare)

Andra författare: Se under Andra författare.

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygOmnämnanden
1,4701912,406 (4.24)22
H.P. Lovecraft's astonishing tales blend elements of horror, science fiction, and cosmic terror that are as powerful today as they were when they were first published. This tome brings together all of Lovecraft's harrowing stories, including the complete Cthulhu Mythos cycle, just the way they were first released. -- publisher description.… (mer)
  1. 00
    Hero of Dreams av Brian Lumley (Sylak)
    Sylak: Cthulhu Mythos

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» Se även 22 omnämnanden

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An audiobook can live and die by its narrator, and that's definitely true of this extensive collection, which features readers both good and bad. Lovecraft undeniably did something special for the horror genre, unleashing a whole world of cosmic terror to be expanded on in various incarnations. Nevertheless, his writing is dry, utilises virtually zero dialogue, and frequently drowns in hilariously "vague" and "nebulous" prose (from which the only thing that can be derived is that some unimaginably horrible nameless thing exists... somewhere... out there). Whether the atmosphere that this superfluously adjective-ridden prose aims to convey was delivered to me successfully or not was absolutely determined by who was reading the story. The Call of Cthulu was wonderfully read, and I was completely sold on the dread of the tale. Colour Out of Space was incredibly clinical, like a fact sheet read out by A.I.. A perfect example (of many) as to why I would rather read words on a page, although goodness knows how long it would have taken me to finish if that was the case here. The Dunwich Horror I also found compelling, with a different structure to most of the other stories and the added benefit of CHARACTERS and DIALOGUE.

Judging by this collection, I don't find Lovecraft particularly impressive as a writer or a storyteller. The mythology was unique at the time and played an important role in the development of a genre, but read one of the better stories and you've read them all. A discovery is made, it cannot be described, the consequences mean something awful exists out there in the universe - and god help those that witness it (or not - maybe that god is not the benevolent being you thought). That's the long and short of it. ( )
  TheScribblingMan | Jul 29, 2023 |
The absolute best entry point for any Lovecraft newcomer and a beloved favorite tome for all horror fans! This deluxe edition is packed to the gills with haunting classics like the Cats of Ulthar, Lurking Fear, The Call of Cthulhu, Herbert West-Reanimator and so many more! Keep your nightmares alive with the best weird tales Lovecraft has to offer. It even comes with a few black and white awesome illustrations. It's super thick too and could probably double as an anvil in emergency situations. Lovecraft is one of the more complicated figures in literary history. Despite being a pulp fiction author who wrote in an outdated style and was regarded as overall problematic (and is reflected in some of his writing), he is credited for inventing cosmic horror and inspiring many famous horror creators today. Though his style flaunts that over-educated, outmoded language of 19th century gothic writers (like Poe) his writing is unique by his characters being somewhat distant and aloof. ( )
  am08279 | Oct 28, 2022 |
H.P Lovecraft is a horror/sci-fi writer from the 1920's.
He is among one of the greatest writers in the 20th century, some of my other favourites are Edgar Allan Poe and Mary Shelley.

I have read all the stories in the book, but i'm still reading the information about the Author, because it's really long..

So my favourite stories were:
The Statement of Randolph Carter
The Cats of Ulthar
Herbert West-Reanimator
The Music of Erich Zann
The Hound
The Rats in the wall
The Unnamable
Pickman's Model
Call of Cthulhu
The Shunned House
The Dunwich Horror
The Dreams in the Witch-House
The Shadow over Innsmouth
The thing on the doorstep
The case of Charles Dexter Ward
To a Dreamer (Poem)

My Least favourite stories:
The Lurking Fear
The Doom that came to Sarnath
The Nameless City
Under the Pyramids
In the Vault
The Outsider
The horror at Red Hook
The Colour out of space
Cool Air
The Silver Key
The Whisperer in the darkness
The Strange High House in the Mist
From Beyond
Through the gates of the Silver Key (With E.Hoffmann Price)
At the mountains of madness
The Shadow out of time
The Haunter of the dark
The Dream Quest of Unknown Kadath

I really liked all of these stories in particular, because they were entertaining, and creepy.
Most of the time, I read these stories really late at night, when it was quiet. I couldn't sleep after reading some of these stories. Since H.P. Lovecraft had strange and vivid dreams, that's where he got the inspiration for his stories, but he was possibly mentally ill.
He was an intelligent, quiet, shy introvert, some people may of thought of him as a father figure or teacher.
To be honest I much preferred the horror stories more than the sci-fi stories because they were to the point, and creepy. The sci-fi stories were incredibly detailed, but to the point that it distracted you with laborious details, that I was confused by.
If the stories were more about horrible things happening to the protagonist, than going into great detail about an ancient civilization that I've never heard or don't understand how to even pronoun their name, then I would have been happy to read them. However, because there was so much attention to every single detail, or what an ancient long since dead creature would look like, it took me a lot longer to read some of these stories.
In the mountains of madness, would be a good example.
Due to the attention to detail in the sci-fi stories, I found it incredibly boring to read some of these stories, and was glad once I reached the end of the story.
If you are like me and would like to read the horror stories first, then I recommend that you read the stories that I listed above.
You will not be disappointed.
However if you are more of a sci-fi fan, then by all means, read the rest of the stories that I have mentioned as my least favourite above. I would recommend this to horror and sci-fi fans, although I personally didn't like all the stories, due to the attention to detail, it made reading some of the stories to read, very tiring.
Some of the stories in my opinion, once I read them were not very memorable, I preferred reading some of the more obvious, creepy and disturbing stories. This book, might not be for everyone however, since the author wrote these stories in the 19th century, so the language and vocabulary are unlike anything that I am used to, so I had to look up what certain words mean, because I didn't always understand what they meant, or how to pronounce them.
This book is perfect, if you have a lot of spare time, since it will take you months to read it all, this book is not for the faint of heart, some people might be disturbed by the subject matter of the stories.
The Cats of Ulthar is violent, the animals are harmed, so some people might be offended by this for example.
I don't like that the cats are harmed in the short story, but I do like that the cats get revenge.
H.P. Lovecraft is considered a controversial person due to the name he gave his black cat, something he will forever be judged for, even though he lived in the 1920's a notoriously racist Era. ( )
  EvilCreature | Sep 7, 2022 |
My first abortive attempt to acquire a copy of the Necronomicon came in April of 2018, when I prevailed in an online auction. By chance – or so I assumed – the tome was due to arrive in the mail around the time of Walpurgis Night, that time of year when it is said that Hell emerges on the earth and Satanic minions gather for unspeakable deeds and festivities, which I found appropriate given the nature of the book. However, by mid-May, with the Satanic hordes having apparently receded and the sun chancing to shine, this dark bible of the proto-Hadean races of forgotten eons still had not arrived. In correspondence with the anonymous seller, he assured me that the book had been posted, but that there had been said to be queer occurrences at his local post office, and perhaps the package containing the tome had been lost.

I suspected at the time that the seller had been reluctant to release the book, given the auction had specified no reserve and I had succeeded with a paltry sum that would have been little recompense to him for such a treasure, and that his vague claims of postal interferences were a ruse in order to retain the tome. Whether truly lost, or withheld, or perhaps intercepted by some third party, I have never been able to precisely determine, but I learned that, amidst our correspondence, the seller had fled to Turkey for a supposed holiday. In the interim, I had acquired a full refund, and the anticipated book never reached me. Whatever my frustrations at the time, I now believe that this Anatolia-bound fugitive, whether out of fear, greed, or perhaps a higher code of honour than is to be found in the eBay Seller's Guidelines, was, in denying me this foul tome, operating with my best interests at heart.

Discouraged by the affair, and with other disruptive events in my life taking precedence over my naïve foray into the realm of occult acquisition, it was a long time before I made further inquiries into a copy of the Necronomicon. My secundal attempt to acquire the book online proved much less obstructive than the first, and a different copy of the Necronomicon arrived from a different seller one ill-starred day in June of 2020. The book looked impressive – a stout, leather-bound tome promising, in gold filigree on the black cover, 'The Best Weird Tales of H. P. Lovecraft'. Here, at long last, was the work of a writer I had long felt a deep and strange desire to read. The name of 'Cthulhu', a dread elder god seemingly of Lovecraft's manufacture, had long been echoing in my head, though with a different pronunciation each time it occurred. Aside from this portentous echo, my only knowledge of the author had been 'The Shadow Over Innsmouth', which had served as the basis for a quest in the video game Oblivion, part of the Elder Scrolls series.

Nevertheless, despite my long-awaited success in procurement of the volume, and the enticing presentation of the Necronomicon as a touted Commemorative Edition, it was still a while before I began reading the book. I first cracked the spine of this accursed tome in February of 2021, prompted by the encouragement of a man I had believed a friend. He was a convinced acolyte of Lovecraft who, I now suspect, had darker motives; perhaps a cultist directed by the Old Ones, or a servant of some other demoniac agency, or even a demon himself.

In the months since that portentous day, I have dipped in and out of the Necronomicon with increasing fervour. The stories were, at first, ghost stories; disturbing and inventive ones that could create a deep chill in the reader's heart. Initial ones like 'Dagon', and those which involved dungeon-delving, pleasingly recalled that Elder Scrolls series I have already mentioned. Each story was of a high calibre, and though a formula quickly emerged, Lovecraft's skill as a writer vanquished any thoughts of sameness. However, the writer was verbose, obscurant and seemed to possess an aversion to dialogue, which made the stories slow and often difficult. Words like 'fulgurous' were used without abatement, and there were long, dense passages of prose with long, accumulative sentences. However, the stories were also brooding, Gothic and deeply fascinating; each and every one of them rewarded the effort made to read them. I began to appreciate, respect, and increasingly revere the influence of Lovecraft upon the horror genre.

As I progressed through the book, this respect began to take on forbidding proportions. The stories increasingly displayed an erudition that transcended pulp horror, and established Lovecraft as a literary writer in his own right. The terrors he revealed in the stories were, paradoxically, often left unrevealed: monsters and events that were described as 'inexplicable' or 'beyond description'. Rather than being a cheap trick, this technique was often rooted in archetypal fears of depths, darkness and the unknown: perhaps the unknowable, which goes beyond the bounds of the rational or even instinctive human mind. Even the stories of the Cthulhu Mythos – the entire cycle of which is included in the tome – retained this nameless fear, despite their monster being named and described. The stories, assembled in chronological order, began to discuss quantum mechanics, naming the likes of Planck and Einstein and other venerable interlopers against the hidden hand. So complete was Lovecraft's oppressive Gothic effect that such scientific discussions often came as a surprise; I had otherwise fallen into the trap of aligning Lovecraft, chronologically speaking, with the likes of Edgar Allan Poe, when he is in fact a contemporary of Hemingway and Joyce. For all his archaic trappings, Lovecraft is dealing with modern dilemmas: of the interplay of science and myth, and the Nietzschean diagnosis of a dead God; of the unmanning frontiers of outer space and the deepest recesses of earth and ocean; of consciousness itself and the deeply-rooted Jungian archetypes by which we fashion approximations of our deepest-held fears.

I began to become increasingly convinced of the tales. The dark streets of Arkham became more real to me than my hometown; the river waters of the Miskatonic more natural in their meanderings than any babbling brooks which reside nearby. I dreamed strange dreams and slept mostly in daylight; my mind not daring to conjure in dark midnight hours those images which danced from the pages and found root in the primordial recesses of my brain, as easily as if they had already been nested there in some comparable archetypal form. I noted, with increasing unease, the mentions in the text that the Necronomicon was not a tome comprising 'The Best Weird Tales of H. P. Lovecraft', but was instead a book-within-a-book, an unspeakable collection of subterranean Babelian invocations and eldritch rites composed or curated, so the story goes, by the mad Arab Abdul Alhazred. I wondered if perhaps my initial abortive seller from two years previous had not fled to Turkey, but was, in fact, returning there, perhaps reined in by a sultanic master or cult suzerain in order to prevent further dissemination of copies of the forbidden Necronomicon.

I wondered, then, why my secundal attempt to acquire the book from a different seller had been so uncomplicated in comparison to the first, and if the acquisition was not perhaps a trap laid for me by unknown agents, or a penalty for not having heeded the warnings from my first abortive encounter. My increasing attraction to and investment in the stories, and the growing madness that I began to associate with them, seemed to confirm this hypothesis. I began to notice typos in the main body of the text; at first a simple substitution of a letter which could be forgiven as a mistake, a transcribing or proofing error; but then entire phrases ("he had and swered" instead of "he had answered"), until finally I noticed that even that demoniac appellation, Necronomicon, had at least once been rendered as 'Necroriomicon'.

The conventional trappings of the book – the feeling of wood pulp, the publisher's mark of Gollancz, even the Afterword by Stephen Jones (which, though it would serve better as a Foreword, would still contain lamentably insufficient warning of the corrupting abominations contained within these pages) – did not assuage my unease. I now believe that the mistakes and corruptions in the text were not corruptions at all, but letters fragmented from an extradimensional realm – perhaps Kadath or R'lyeh or the Court of Azathoth – in which such distorted, bonded shapes pass for written language. In this realm, Necroriomicon is not a proofing error replacing Necronomicon, but a name by which the same book is known in a slightly altered realm distinct from ours.

I fear that the potent, eternal Necronomicon that was divined by Alhazred is trying to break out of its linguistic chains and sublimate into our own, through this similarly-titled and seemingly innocuous vehicle for Lovecraft's stories. I can only hope prospective readers see my growing madness as a cautionary tale and flee from even the mere mention of the name 'Necronomicon', even when the seductively chthonic tome is found reasonably priced online. For you see, the typos I identified were not typos at all, but an attempt at communication and dissemination. They were words written by a hand that was not human. ( )
1 rösta MikeFutcher | Apr 30, 2021 |
I read this for the "A Gothic Fiction Novel" part of my 2019 reading challenge. I should have picked something else, I rarely like short stories or science fiction. Many of these stories were slow and had similar plots. A few were very similar to Frankenstein. Overall, not my cup of tea. ( )
  Linyarai | Feb 16, 2020 |
Visa 1-5 av 19 (nästa | visa alla)
Lovecraft intended these tales to crawl with the unnameable, the meaningless horror that lies behind the world we see. As an earnest of this the mysterious Old Ones, who "filtered" down from the stars a hundred million years ago, sleep beneath the Pacific, waiting to be woken by "mixed-blooded and mentally aberrant" worshippers. Their monstrous servants, genetically modified from our ancestors, suck and slither in the waste spaces of Tibet. Their abandoned Cyclopean cities rear up out of the Antarctic ice, or hang off the Himalayan mountainsides as "curious clinging cubes and ramparts".

» Lägg till fler författare (16 möjliga)

Författarens namnRollTyp av författareVerk?Status
H. P. Lovecraftprimär författarealla utgåvorberäknat
Edwards, LesIllustratörmedförfattarealla utgåvorbekräftat
Jones, StephenRedaktörmedförfattarealla utgåvorbekräftat
Jones, StephenEfterordmedförfattarealla utgåvorbekräftat
Price, E. HoffmanFörfattaremedförfattarealla utgåvorbekräftat
Wilson, GahanMapmedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat

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Necronomicon: the Best Weird Tales of H.P. Lovecraft is a collection of 36 works. Do not combine with other books titled Necronomicon, many of which refer to the book H.P. Lovecraft invented as a literary device in his fictional world.
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H.P. Lovecraft's astonishing tales blend elements of horror, science fiction, and cosmic terror that are as powerful today as they were when they were first published. This tome brings together all of Lovecraft's harrowing stories, including the complete Cthulhu Mythos cycle, just the way they were first released. -- publisher description.

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