12 Jul Cthulhu in Your Fiction
I am lazy, lazy, when it comes to book reviews so these are going to be short and sweet.
First off, I Am Providence by Nick Mamatas hits bookstores next month. They say looks are not everything, but this is a sharp looking little tome. I thought I was tired of tentacles, but the cover works well and the interior has some nifty ‘zine’ pages which do resemble real zine pages (remember those?). Like other Mamatas fiction the book is a blend of two different sub-genres. In this case the murder mystery and Lovecraftian fiction. Colleen Danzig is attending the Summer Tentacular, the biggest Lovecraftian bash of the year, when her roommate is murdered, his face peeled off. Colleen goes Nancy Drew and tries to figure out who killed him, but this being a Lovecraft convention there are too many suspects. From the bibliophiles who maybe collect books made out of human skin, to the nerd-bros who sit with their little trilby upon their head pontificating about women in genre fiction, Colleen has a long list of people who might have done it. If you’ve ever attend a SFF con of any kind you’ll recognize some of these characters and if you’ve ever gone to a Lovecraft convention you’ll really recognize some of them. Colleen is quirkier and more pleasant than many other Mamatas characters and there are funny moments amidst all the sleuthing. It is… dare I say it, almost ‘cute,’ even as it chews and chomps and spits out certain aspects of fandom amidst its snappy dialogue. And it is entertaining, even if you are not big on Lovecraft knowledge, and even more fun if you are (the cat in the cemetery thing, I mean, nod if you’ve gone to Necronomicon and think this could happen).
Next, I thought it fitting I mention Swords v Cthulhu, edited by Jesse Bullington and Molly Tanzer. Molly is probably best known as my co-reviewer of Gor books at Pornokitsch. I felt like I needed to disclose that. Anyway, you might be like, what is next, *sticks* versus Cthulhu? But the volume is a brisk thing and will be entertaining to people who like pulpy stuff. There’s a Michael Cisco story set in Roman times, Wendy Wagner has a Hildegard of Bingen story, and Caleb Wilson’s “Bow Down Before the Snail King!” gets the award for Best Story Title of 2016. Lovecraft anthologies are a dime a dozen these days, but Swords v Cthulhu feels uncluttered and dare I say, peppy enough, to lure you into buying it. There’s monsters, there’s heroes, and yeah, some swords. It’s out already, by the way.
Dear God, I’m in a good mood today, am I not?
Until next time.