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Book of the Dead: Friends of Yesteryear: Fictioneers & Others Hardcover – Jan 5 2001


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 423 pages
  • Publisher: Arkham House Publishers (Jan. 5 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 087054179X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0870541797
  • Product Dimensions: 3.9 x 14.7 x 20.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 703 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,712,709 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most helpful customer reviews

Format: Hardcover
This is very much an old man's book, full of digressions, stories without a point, and endless, endless repetition and ranting. Nor is the author, pulp veteran E. Hoffmann Price, a man of much intelligence or discernment--- at one point he proudly tells us how he advised a friend who needed immediate surgery to correct a life-treatening condition not to have it, because "the stars were wrong!" Fortunately, the friend ignored Price's astrological advice.
However, Price is the only man to have met personally and spent considerable time with all three of the titans of WEIRD TALES, H. P. Lovecraft, Robert E. Howard, and Clark Ashton Smith, during their heyday as pulp writers, and he can and does uniquely offer first-hand, fairly vivid (if frustrating) word portraits of these immortal creators. The book is filled out with a number of other similar portraits of fictioneers, such as Henry Kuttner, August Derleth and Edmond Hamilton, and even Price's favorite Turkish rug dealer. There are also attached some vaguely related essays by Price, and a useful bibliography of Price's literary output.
Price's general cluelessness and lack of perspective often results in some rich, unintended humor, as in his blandly told tale of a friend and colleague who graduated from the pulps to become a successful novelist and screenwriter, who was also a dedicated Communist, who spent years in Russia and took courses in Marxist philosophy at Moscow State University, and who upon return to the US immediately got a job as screenwriter with the Walt Disney Studios!
Price spends a huge amount of space scolding his friend H. P.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 2 reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Provides a set of fascinating biographical essays Sept. 8 2001
By Midwest Book Review - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
Over a period of almost 60 years E. Hoffman Price, a writer during the pulp magazine era, befriended great writers from Lovecraft and Derleth to Clark Ashton Smith and Jack Williamson. He kept diaries and letters of his cross-country trips and encounters and in Book Of The Dead provides a set of fascinating biographical essays on his experiences and relationships with the authors, offering many insights and personal encounters.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
The Pulpsters Come to Life Dec 23 2003
By Rory Coker - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
This is very much an old man's book, full of digressions, stories without a point, and endless, endless repetition and ranting. Nor is the author, pulp veteran E. Hoffmann Price, a man of much intelligence or discernment--- at one point he proudly tells us how he advised a friend who needed immediate surgery to correct a life-treatening condition not to have it, because "the stars were wrong!" Fortunately, the friend ignored Price's astrological advice.
However, Price is the only man to have met personally and spent considerable time with all three of the titans of WEIRD TALES, H. P. Lovecraft, Robert E. Howard, and Clark Ashton Smith, during their heyday as pulp writers, and he can and does uniquely offer first-hand, fairly vivid (if frustrating) word portraits of these immortal creators. The book is filled out with a number of other similar portraits of fictioneers, such as Henry Kuttner, August Derleth and Edmond Hamilton, and even Price's favorite Turkish rug dealer. There are also attached some vaguely related essays by Price, and a useful bibliography of Price's literary output.
Price's general cluelessness and lack of perspective often results in some rich, unintended humor, as in his blandly told tale of a friend and colleague who graduated from the pulps to become a successful novelist and screenwriter, who was also a dedicated Communist, who spent years in Russia and took courses in Marxist philosophy at Moscow State University, and who upon return to the US immediately got a job as screenwriter with the Walt Disney Studios!
Price spends a huge amount of space scolding his friend H. P. Lovecraft for viewing fiction writing as a private art rather than a cash-earning profession, and he takes every opportunity to ridicule the overweight, semiliterate, cultureless Lovecraft fanboys of the 1970s. But, of course, obnoxious fans aside, it is precisely Lovecraft's commitment to art that makes him the best-known of all WEIRD TALES' regular contributors, and the only one who will ever be conceivably of interest within the towers of academia.

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