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The Road to Madness [Paperback]

H.P. Lovecraft
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Oct. 1 1996
One of the most influential practitioners of American horror, H.P. Lovecraft inspired the work of Stephen King, Anne Rice, and Clive Barker. As he perfected his mastery of the macabre, his works developed from seminal fragments into acknowledged masterpieces of terror. This volume traces his chilling career and includes:
IMPRISONED WITH THE PHARAOHS--Houdini seeks to reveal the demons that inhabit the Egyptian night.
AT THE MOUNTAINS OF MADNESS--An unsuspecting expedition uncovers a city of untold terror, buried beneath an Antarctic wasteland.
Plus, for the first time in any Del Rey edition:
HERBERT WEST: REANIMATOR--Mad experiments yield hideous results in this, the inspiration for the cult film Re-Animator.
COOL AIR--An icy apartment hides secrets no man dares unlock.
THE TERRIBLE OLD MAN--The intruders seek a fortune but find only death!

Frequently Bought Together

The Road to Madness + Dreams of Terror and Death: The Dream Cycle of H. P. Lovecraft + Bloodcurdling Tales of Horror and the Macabre: The Best of H. P. Lovecraft
Price For All Three: CDN$ 41.07

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From Amazon

"There is a melancholy, operatic grandeur in Lovecraft's most passionate work," writes Joyce Carol Oates in The New York Review of Books, "... a curious elegiac poetry of unspeakable loss, of adolescent despair, and an existential loneliness so pervasive that it lingers in the reader's memory, like a dream, long after the rudiments of Lovecraftian plot have faded." Del Rey has reprinted Lovecraft's stories in three large-format paperbacks. This third volume collects one poem, one story fragment, and 26 tales not included in the first two, including "Herbert West--Reanimator," "The Lurking Fear," "Dagon," "The Unnameable," and the classic short novel "At the Mountains of Madness." Introduction by Barbara Hambly. Beautiful cover art by surrealist John Jude Palencar.

From Publishers Weekly

H.P. Lovecraft. Del Rey, $10 (384p) ISBN 0-345-38422-9 Lovecraft's transformation from beginner to master horror writer is the theme behind this collection of macabre tales, the third in a Del Rey trilogy of Lovecraft's work. It certainly succeeds in this design, making it both easy and informative to follow his development. But the works included here range from abysmal to excellent, with most occupying the weaker end of the range. Certain selections show Lovecraft at his gripping and imaginative best?particularly the important novella, "At the Mountains of Madness," which deals with dreadful life encountered in the Antarctic wasteland (creatures who were "above all doubt the originals of the fiendish elder myths which thing like the Pnakotic Manuscripts and the Necronomicon affrightedly hint about."). But earlier works are less impressive. The first five stories, labeled "early tales" by their author, are among the few youthful writings that Lovecraft preserved. Three show the promise of talent to come, but the inclusion here of the xenophobic tract, "The Street," is barely justifiable. Beyond these, there are many one-note and predictable tales, often additionally marred by grotesque racism. It clearly took Lovecraft a while to develop the subtlety required for suspenseful storytelling. Editorial remarks beyond the existing one-page introduction could have added much, as would dating of the pieces. Serious Lovecraft fans, however, will not want to miss this collection, if only for the few gems included and later tales that bear on the Cthulhu mythos.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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The horrible conclusion which had been gradually obtruding itself upon my confused and reluctant mind was now an awful certainty. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
My original review for "The Transition of H.P. Lovecraft: The Road to Madness" was posted on January 10th 1999. The title and review was written as follows:
A true master of the macabre.
My only complaint about the writings of H.P. Lovecraft would be that many of his stories are of a similar nature and theme. Irregardless of this I found most of his stories to be extremely impressive works of fantasy and horror.
H.P. Lovecraft is a true past master. If you like anything that has ever dealt with horror, fantasy, or sci-fi, then you would be doing yourself a great disservice to not read a collection of Lovecraft stories at least once in your life.
I was very, very impressed by my first encounter with Lovecraft's work. I will read more of his material before my life is over.
End of original review.
I am very pleased with my original review and have re-reviewed it to properly put it under my correct name and identity.
The only thing new that I would like to add to this re-review would be this: the last story in this collection is called "At The Mountains of Madness." This story is hands down the best horror story I have ever read in my entire life. Nothing I have read since has equaled it, and nothing ever will. I consider it a profound pleasure that back in 1999 I read a horror story that will stand for the rest of my life as the greatest horror story I have ever read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The greatest author of all time! Dec 28 2003
Most people thinks that a man with a knife chasing teenagers is scary. This book proves them wrong! All of these stories were written back in the 1920s, but just because they're old doesn't mean they're not scary. His stories tell of civilizations that existed before man and creatures that drive people insane. They tell of aliens that have supernatural qualities and creatures that are really evil. His stories are almost believable. Some people actually believed his stories! I think it's because his ideas and writing are so perfect. You won't find a bad story in this book. It's worth the price.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Horrors! March 15 2004
My first experience with Lovecraft was reading "The Lurking Fear" and "The Outsider". His descriptions, his prose, his gift for getting even the least creative reader inside his's pure genius. These tales are guaranteed to send a chill down your spine. Whether a fan of the genre or not, one cannot fal to appreciate his skill at vividly creating an aura of creepiness no other modern author has been able to duplicate.
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Literary theorists swear up and down to their youthful, naive charges that there are only three conflicts in fiction: Man versus Man, Man versus Nature, and Man versus Himself.
Providence recluse and Grandmaster of Horror H.P. Lovecraft, while proving handy at mastering all three of the aforementioned timeless old chestnuts, suggests there is a fourth category: Man versus Thing.
Any connoiseur of the frenzied scribblings of old Adbul Al-Hazred in the Necronomicon will find this second Del Rey collection indispensable as 1) a grimoire chock-full of searingly useful material on the recondite pursuits of those lovable, tentacled beings we know and love as the Elder Gods---mind your manners, sonny boy, they were devouring souls and mastering the Time-Space Quanitplex back when your ancestors were hobnobbing with euglena and paramecium; and 2)Scaring yourself silly.
Man versus Thing, indeed.
Lovecraft was a God among insects, a true literary Giant in the Earth, and the potent, vicious, soul-unhinging madness flowing from his deliciously warped mind is astonishing. Lovecraft took the great disillusionment that stemmed from the Great War and ratcheted it up to the next step, pounding the final nail in the coffin of scientific positivism, and his horror is Cosmic; therein lies his peculiar brilliance. Lovecraft is more than purpled prose and tentacles, in that he has created a world peopled with bloodless, bookish men of science and set them up against uncaring stellar horrors, leaving them with no appeal to God or Goodness. The crucifix won't help you against the horror bubbling out of *that* particular crypt, my good man!
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3.0 out of 5 stars Better than Average Collection May 10 2003
"Transition", the third in a series of books documenting the complete range of HP Lovecraft's works, offers a prespective look at the author's earliest stories, and constrasts these with the pieces that would eventually seal his cult popularity. While many of the early pieces (with "The Beast in the Cave" being a notable exception) are hardly worth the read, this volume does contain a fair of amount of Lovecraft's more exceptional offerings. "At the Mountains of Madness", a short novel in itself, is a fantastic example of both horror and wonder found at the ends of the earth. "Arthur Jermyn", an indelible favorite, chronicles the lineage of one man's twisted family history, and finds a rotten apple on the family tree. "Cold Air", an unsually straight horror yarn about the apartment upstairs, gets ugly when the air conditioning suddenly goes on the brink. And of course, the infamous "Herbert West - Re-animator", where a power mad doctor is forced to reconcile the consequences of a legion of walking atrocities created by his own hands. 29 Stories are includced in this volume, but unfortunetly alot of the real spine tinglers (such as "Pickman's Model") were already compiled in the first two volumes of the series. LoveCraft's writing is at times more than a little thick, and the early 20th century cadence of the english requires time to digest, but worth it in the end. Unfortunately, his works are grotesuely racist and culturally xenophobic, but given the date these stories were written one must oblige to take it in with a grain of salt. Lovecraft's stories are not neccesarily for everyone, but those who like him tend to love him, and for those people, this book is a better than average compendium. On a side note, the illustrations, both on the cover and inside the book, are fantastic.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Lovecraft is the Greatest Gothic Writer of All Time
Here you have it! The lot of the H.P. Lovecraft stories that were later adapted into horror films. As such, it is the most interesting of the series of 3 books by Del Ray. Read more
Published on Nov. 9 2003 by Joseph Johnson
5.0 out of 5 stars the master of the macabre
lovecraft's work, perhaps more so than any other writer of his time or any other time, reflects the horror at the center of existence and the unseen forces which work to disrupt... Read more
Published on Feb. 5 2003 by J from NY
5.0 out of 5 stars Independant Review
I highly recomend this book. It combines classic lovecraft stories (such as "At the Mountains of Madness") with some of his lesser known classics (like "The Shunned House" and "The... Read more
Published on July 25 2002 by Amazon Customer
1.0 out of 5 stars Right stuff, wrong publisher
I haven't had this specific volume in hand, but I happen to own a set of pocket size paperbacks of Lovecraft's works also published by Del Rey (and still available). Read more
Published on Feb. 16 2002 by "svartalf"
4.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating Tales for Collectors and Other Freaks!
This collection of stories by H.P. Lovecraft apparently was put together for hardcore collectors, but it does have many treasures for those who are just beginning to discover his... Read more
Published on Aug. 25 2001 by doomsdayer520
4.0 out of 5 stars LOVECRAFT'S BECOMING!!!
Many of Lovecraft's villains and heroes, which he so smoothly incorporates into his tales, are none other than scholars who are dangerously treading the realms of forbidden... Read more
Published on Aug. 19 2001 by Scott Woolsoncroft
5.0 out of 5 stars pure lovecraft
this first book in a planned tetrology scores high. Mostly, I suppose, because it's true Lovecraft, no latter day additions. Read more
Published on July 8 2001 by astik2tehdic
5.0 out of 5 stars The godfather of horror
The works of H.P. Lovecraft loom like a shadow over today's modern horror fiction. His brilliance forshadowed the likes of Stephen King, Clive Barker and many others. Read more
Published on July 2 2001 by Noctem
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