As a card-carrying horror geek, I’m a big H.P. Lovecraft fan. “The Call of Cthulhu” is a masterpiece, and “The Color out of Space” is one of the creepiest literary works I’ve ever read.
But surprisingly enough, I’m a total newcomer to the expanded Cthulhu Mythos. This is an untenable situation. The governments of like, three imaginary countries have postponed their upcoming elections in order to lobby for UN sanctions against my further reading of anything else.
So I went ahead and snagged an eBook copy of a bunch of Cthulhu Mythos tales (for $0.99, you can’t go wrong). I’ve only read a couple of the stories so far, but these authors are really committed to maintaining a uniquely Lovecraftian feel.
I thought I would post some brief reviews of my favorite tales from the Mythos as I read them. The first non-Lovecraft story in the book is T.E.D. Klein‘s “The Events at Poroth Farm,” and it is a doozy. It’s very similar in feeling to “The Color out of Space,” and it combines that weird sense of otherworldly dread with a parasitic creature that is half Alien and half The Exorcist. In other words, it’s really good.
I don’t see the tale as fitting in with the larger Cthulhu narrative, but it does explicitly reference Lovecraft’s writing at one point (the protagonist, an English professor, is working his way through a massive collection of gothic literature). Regardless of whether the Old Ones are actually present in Klein’s universe or not, this is a seriously great story that stands on its own as a super-creepy horror tale. Highly recommended.
9 thoughts on “The Cthulhu Mythos, pt. 1: “The Events at Poroth Farm””
T.E.D. Klein, Robert Bloch, 99 cents… how could you go wrong? Thanks for the reference…
Yeah, it’s a great deal. I really want to read more of Klein’s work now–that story was great.
Sounds like a great collection!
So far so good. I’m not very far into it yet, but I really liked the Klein story.
That book is too expensive, but I want to read it. You are going to have to call me up and read it to me.
In my best Fran Drescher voice.
I’ve noticed that most of the extended mythos books make but few references to Lovecraft directly; they seem mostly content to be spiritual successors in teh larger scheme. I actually prefer this approach, as it makes them seem part of the larger universe without just being naked knock-off sequels using the Lovecraft name. The alternative would be the Star Wars extended universe novels, where they shoehorn in references to other characters so blatantly I’m convinced there must be a clone army of Han Solo’s numbering in the millions spread out over the galaxy, because that’s the only way to explain how many goddam people have interacted with him.
Haha, seriously. Yeah, I like subtler references too–I only mentioned it because “The Cthulhu Mythos” generally seems to be about expanding the story of the Old Ones and the Great Old Ones and the Deep Ones and the Ones Whose Names I Forget and the Hideously Gibbering Non-Euclidian Ones, but there really isn’t any of that in “Poroth.” Doesn’t matter, though–it’s a fantastic story.