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A Reader of Fictions: The Brain from Young Frankenstein: The Musical

A Reader of Fictions

Book Reviews for Just About Every Kind of Book

Monday, November 28, 2011

The Brain from Young Frankenstein: The Musical

The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Stories

Author: H. P. Lovecraft
Pages: 360 (followed by 60 pages of notes)
Review Copy Acquired from: Penguin Classics

The short stories of Lovecraft, at least the ones in this anthology, all seem to take place in the same universe. The stories have a lot in common with another. For one thing, they all focus on some sort of mythical monster/god/evil creation of a mad scientist / reader of the Necronomicon. Also, if one were narrating them, it would be really difficult to resist the urge to end the telling of each with DUN-DUN-DUN.

At first, I really was not feeling this at all. Lovecraft's writing is very flowery and ornate, which I felt did not lend itself particularly well to tales of horror. All of the extra information and verbiage lessened any sense of urgency that the stories were trying to convey. As I became more familiar with his narrative style and realized the connections underlying each story, I found myself coming to enjoy the stories.

These tales are often hugely unsurprising in their final twists. The plot lines herein will be familiar to most people who have ever watched a horror film or read a horror story. At first, this irritated me, but this too turned to some amount of fascination when I considered that they were probably fairly original plot lines then. He may have originated some of these ideas, which is pretty cool.

While this will not be for everyone, I definitely think that anyone who really liked Mary Shelley's Frankenstein will adore this, as it was clearly a huge influence upon him. Plus, the cover on this edition is completely gorgeous, even if I doubt Cthulhu would actually look like that.

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