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Publisher's Summary

In the Mountains of Madness: The Life, Death, and Extraordinary Afterlife of H. P. Lovecraft interweaves the biography of the legendary writer with an exploration of Lovecraft as a phenomenon. It aims to explain this reclusive figure, while also challenging some of the general views held by Lovecraft devotees, focusing specifically on the large cross-section of horror and science fiction fans who know Lovecraft through films, role-playing games, and video games directly influenced by his work, but know little or nothing about him.

More than a traditional biography, In the Mountains of Madness will place Lovecraft and his work in a cultural context, as an artist more in tune with our time than his own. Much of the literary work on Lovecraft tries to place him in relation to Edgar Allan Poe, M. R. James, or Arthur Machen; these ideas have little meaning for most contemporary listeners. In his provocative new book, W. Scott Poole reclaims the true essence of Lovecraft in relation to the comics of Joe Lansdale, the novels of Stephen King, and some of the biggest blockbuster films in contemporary America, proving the undying influence of this rare and significant figure.

©2016 W. Scott Poole (P)2016 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"Thoroughly enjoyable and highly readable." ( Kirkus Reviews)

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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An Insightful Look

Lovecraft is one of those authors whom has not aged well, this book takes the reasons for that head on with a fairly compelling thesis. For those that might be skeptical or hesitant into a heavy biographical examination of the man, know that all controversies and narratives are addressed. This really did allow me to understand Lovecraft's work so much better.

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Excellent biography

To be honest, I'm not even a big fan of Lovecraft. I'm just mildly interested. However, this biography is so well researched and organized, I was mesmerized. The info provided and the way it is presented makes it one of the best biographies I know of. It also presents Lovecraft & his work in a way that would delight a serious fan and inspire others like me to read more Lovecraft.

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  • William
  • Kennesaw, GA, United States
  • 05-18-17

A fascinating modern look at HPL

Poole tackles the squishy tentacular monster that is the strange life of H P Lovecraft. Unflinching in its look at HPLs good and unsavory bits, I think this is a must-read for fans who want to take up scholarship or more intense fandom within the worlds created by the old man from Rhode Island.

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Needs Citation

The Author lets you know up front that this will be told as an Historian who is also a fan of HPL. He then goes on to offer details about HPL personal life but fails to mention specifically what sources he uses. A Historian will have specific sources for a set of facts. He does refer to General correspondences between HPL and other authors but never any specifics. Apparently, W. Scott Poole inferred a great deal about HPL's personal feelings and life from his letters, but the Author rarely cites specifics.

The Author then commits a sin in the second half of this book that turns this Biography into a Libel case for S.T. Joshi, Campbell and other authors. He begins to detail the biases and mistakes other authors have made when writing about HPL. As a reader who purchased a book about the life and afterlife of HPL, I don’t want to hear an unsubstantiated critique of other authors who wrote an actual bio piece before this one and did a better job foot-noting their facts.

I wanted to enjoy this book as it is the only HPL bio book on Audible right now, but sadly it’s an under-cited hit piece on HPL and those who write about him.

Not recommended.