Tag Archives: H.P. Lovecraft

The Road by Hiroshi Aramata

“The Road” by Hiroshi Aramata is a short story that appears in Straight to Darkness: Lairs of the Hidden Gods Volume 3 published by Kurodahan Press, an anthology of Cthulhu Mythos Tales from Japan edited by Asamatsu Ken. The Road was translated from Japanese to English by Kathleen Taji.

Hiroshi Aramata
Hiroshi Aramata

This story caught my eye for two reasons:

Mainly, I’ve become intrigued with Hiroshi Aramata’s series of Japanese occult novels based around the history of Tokyo titled, Teito Monogatari, but sadly I’ve been unable to read them, as aside from a few short fan translations, they’ve yet to be translated from Japanese into English. However, the novels have been adapted into two films Tokyo: The Last Megalopolis and Tokyo: The Last War, an original animated video series titled Doomed Megalopolis, and a manga series keeping the original Teito Monogatari name. So I’ve been able to experience a bit of the series via fan-translations of the adaptations. I found the first film, Tokyo: The Last Megalopolis to be an enjoyable watch, despite the filmmaker’s obviously needing to cram a lot of material into a single film. Some of you may be familiar with the series due to the iconic appearance of the series’ antagonist Yasunori Kato, who was an influence on the Street Fighter character, M. Bison (or Vega as he’s called in Japan), as well as several other fictional characters over the years.

Yasunori Kato
Yasunori Kato

 

It also turns out “The Road” is set primary in Providence, RI and focuses on the life of H. P. Lovecraft.

 

H. P. Lovecraft
H. P. Lovecraft

The story takes place from September 10th to September 11th 2001 and begins with a train ride from New York City to Boston, Massachusetts. The main character is an unnamed Japanese professional, possibly a scientist or educator, who is a huge fan of H. P. Lovecraft. Browsing the story a second time, the character’s sex could be either male or female. Either way, the main character can’t resist getting off the train to walk the platform during the train’s three-minute stop in Providence, RI.

As fate would have it, the train pulls away before the narrator can climb back on board. In the ensuing hours, the narrator finds themselves being given a personal tour of Providence by Lovecraft’s friend, C. M. Eddy, who died back in 1967. Needless to say, time-travel via metaphysics seems to play a part in this story. Evidently, a concept or mechanism the people of Providence refer to as “The Road” will be opening soon. The last time “The Road” opened was back in 1923 as a result of the Great Kanto Earthquake that rocked Japan. As an aside, the Great Kanto Earthquake plays a part in Aramata’s Teito Monogatari series as well, with Yasunori Kato, causing the devastating earthquake through the use of magic.

Overall I thought “The Road” was a solid story written in tribute to H. P. Lovecraft. The metaphysical concept of “The Road,” or “the shadow of time” as they sometimes call it in Providence, is kind of interesting, but I enjoyed the tour of Providence by C. M. Eddy more, myself. I know from my limited reading on Lovecraft’s life that portions of what Eddy tells the narrator aren’t accurate (Robert Price points some of these out in his introduction, which I recommend reading AFTER you read the story and not before, due to a few minor spoilers) but they didn’t detract from the story. As a matter of fact, the scenes with Eddy kind of brought my mind to Paul Malmont’s two pulp era novels featuring pulp fiction writers: The China Town Death Cloud Peril (which Lovecraft appeared in, and the main characters attended his funeral) and The Amazing, the Astounding, and the Unknown, both of which I enjoyed.

I didn’t much care for the climax of the tale, it felt a bit too generic, but I thought the actual ending was handled rather nicely.

If you’re a fan of the Cthulhu Mythos, I don’t think you’ll find much meat on the bone in this one. But if you’re a fan or scholar of Lovecraft the man, this will probably be more up your alley, but like I said, don’t expect 100% factual accuracy here.

I basically picked this up because I wanted to actually read a story written by Hiroshi Aramata and it just so happened the only story he has out there that’s been translated into English is a short story about H. P. Lovecraft and Providence.  Given these circumstances, I’m glad I took the time to read “The Road” and am eternally crossing my fingers for his Teito Monogatari series to be translated into English.

Pulp Crazy – The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath by H. P. Lovecraft

http://pulpcrazy.com/podcast/151.mp3

In this week’s episode I discuss The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath by H.P. Lovecraft. Randolph Carter searches through the Dreamlands for Kadath, where the gods of the Dreamlands dwell. This novella was never prepared for publication by HPL and wasn’t published during his lifetime. I found it a bit hard to get into, but enjoyed reading it ten pages at a time.

Links:

Free Complete Works of H. P. Lovecraft eBook from Cthulhuchick: http://arkhamarchivist.com/free-complete-lovecraft-ebook-nook-kindle/

The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath audio book: https://archive.org/details/LovecraftKadath

The Lovecraft e-Zine: http://lovecraftzine.com

Pulp Crazy – Swords in the Mist (Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser Book 3) by Fritz Leiber

 

http://pulpcrazy.com/podcast/146.mp3

In this week’s episode I’ll be discussing Swords in the Mist, Book 3 of the Fafhrd and Gray Mouser sword and sorcery tales by Fritz Leiber. The collection includes five short stories and one novella. In my mind the stand out tale is the short story, “Lean Times in Lankhmar.”

Links:

Purchase Swords in the Mist from Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Swords-Mist-Fafhrd-Gray-Mouser-ebook/dp/B00J84KVA8/

Purchase Swords in the Mist from Audible: http://www.audible.com/pd/Sci-Fi-Fantasy/Swords-in-the-Mist-Audiobook/B002V1NRCE

Siege of Tyre at the Ancient History Encyclopedia: http://www.ancient.eu/article/107/

A Fritz Leiber Site: http://www.lankhmar.co.uk/

Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser at Stormbringer: http://www.stormbringer.net/mouser.html

Pulp Crazy – The Tree by H. P. Lovecraft

http://pulpcrazy.com/podcast/142.mp3

In this week’s episode I’ll be discussing an early H. P. Lovecraft tale, “The Tree.” While it doesn’t fit as snugly into Lovecraft’s Cthulhu Mythos as some of his other tales, it does have some interesting elements going for it. The setting of Ancient Greece, circa 4th Century B.C. being the most prominent in my opinion.

Correction, according to a listener, Ningauble, Lovecraft didn’t discover Arthur Machen until after “The Tree” was written.

Links:

Read “The Tree”

Via eBook: http://arkhamarchivist.com/free-complete-lovecraft-ebook-nook-kindle/

Via eText: http://www.hplovecraft.com/writings/texts/fiction/tr.aspx

or listen via audio: http://ia802707.us.archive.org/11/items/NearlyCompleteHPLovecraftCollection/The_Tree.mp3

“The Tree” at Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Tree_(short_story)

“The Tree” at ISFDB: http://www.isfdb.org/cgi-bin/title.cgi?41878

Lovecraft eZine: http://lovecraftzine.com

The World’s Largest H. P. Lovecraft Audio Links Gateway: http://cthulhuwho1.com/2013/09/07/the-worlds-largest-h-p-lovecraft-audio-links-gateway/

Pulp Crazy – Weird Detective: The Stars Are Wrong

http://pulpcrazy.com/podcast/141.mp3

 

In this week’s episode I’m going to be discussing a comic book that ties in with H. P. Lovecraft’s Cthulhu Mythos. Weird Detective from Dark Horse comics.

I think it’s a comic that kind of fell below everyone’s radar last year and I’m going to be discussing it in depth during this episode. There will be spoilers, but this is more of a setup than a self-contained story, so don’t be afraid to keep listening. This is more like a #0 or #1 issue.

Weird Detective ran in Dark Horse Presents, Dark Horse’s staple comics anthology title. Weird Detective is branded as a Lovecraftian crime comic. The tag-line is, “It takes a monster to catch a monster.” It’s written by Fred Van Lente and illustrated by Guiu Vilanova. Josan Gonzalez is the colorist and Nate Piekos of BLAMBOT is the letterer. Francesco Francavilla provided art for one of the covers to Dark Horse Presents #8 featuring Sebastian Greene, the main character.

The third part concludes by announcing Weird Detective will return in a new #1 issue.

Links:

Dark Horse Website: http://darkhorse.com

The Lovecraft e-Zine: http://lovecraftzine.com

Pulp Crazy – Batman: The Doom That Came To Gotham

http://pulpcrazy.com/podcast/140.mp3

In this week’s episode I discuss, Batman: The Doom That Came To Gotham. It’s an Elseworlds tale set in 1928, featuring a pulp Batman encountering Cthulhu Mythos inspired elements.  This was originally published as a prestige format 3-issue mini series. In the past few years, the individual issues proved pricey on the secondary market due to the popularity of Cthulhu Mythos and Lovecraftian fiction, but DC released a trade paperback collecting the series in late December 2015. It’s now available on Amazon for under $11.00.

Writers: Mike Mignola & Richard Pace

Penciller: Troy Nixey

Inker: Dennis Janke

Colorist: Dave Stewart

Editors: Archie Goodwin & Mike Carlin

Batman created by Bob Kane and Bill Finger

Cover Artist: Mike Mignola

Links:

Purchase Batman: The Doom That Came To Gotham on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Batman-Doom-That-Came-Gotham/dp/1401258069

Lovecraft eZine: http://lovecraftzine.com

H. P. Lovecraft at Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H._P._Lovecraft

Free Lovecraft Complete Fiction ebook (multiple formats): http://arkhamarchivist.com/free-complete-lovecraft-ebook-nook-kindle/

Pulp Crazy – The Hound

http://pulpcrazy.com/podcast/139.mp3

In this week’s episode of Pulp Crazy I’ll be discussing “The Hound” by H. P. Lovecraft. This is a short piece of weird fiction that was first published in the February 1924 issue of Weird Tales. “The Hound” takes place within Lovecraft’s Cthulhu Mythos cycle of stories. It deals with a pair of occultists who pick the wrong grave to rob.

Links:

Nicole Alman’s website: http://cheesecake-weasel.com
Read “The Hound” in:

H. P. Lovecraft: The Complete Fiction at Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/barnes-noble-leatherbound-classics-hp-lovecraft-h-p-lovecraft/1106658815
Cthulhu Chick’s Free Works of H.P. Lovecraft ebook: http://arkhamarchivist.com/free-complete-lovecraft-ebook-nook-kindle/

Listen to William Hart (CthulhuWho1) read his rendition of “The Hound”:  http://cthulhuwho1.com/2010/12/27/h-p-lovecrafts-the-hound-1922-read-by-william-hart/

or purchase an enhanced scored version here: https://gplowman.bandcamp.com/album/hp-lovecrafts-the-hound

Read the eText of “The Hound” – http://www.hplovecraft.com/writings/texts/fiction/h.aspx

“The Hound” @ Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Hound

“The Hound” @ISFDB: http://www.isfdb.org/cgi-bin/title.cgi?41886

The Lovecraft eZine: http://lovecraftzine.com

Pulp Crazy – The Freshman by Philip José Farmer

http://pulpcrazy.com/podcast/138.mp3

In this week’s episode of Pulp Crazy, I celebrate what would have been Philip José Farmer’s 98th Birthday by discussing his tale of scholarship and sorcery at Miskatonic University.

“The Freshman” is Farmer’s contribution to H. P. Lovecraft’s Cthulhu Mythos that follows an elderly frosh on his eventful first day at Miskatonic University. The short story was inspired by a dream Farmer had, where he was an elderly man rushing for a fraternity at a strange university.
Links:

Read “The Freshman” in Tales of the Wold Newton Universe: http://www.amazon.com/Tales-Newton-Universe-Philip-Farmer/dp/1781163049

The Official Philip José Farmer Website: http://pjfarmer.com

Meteor House: http://meteorhousepress.com

WoldNewtonFamily.com: http://woldnewtonfamily.com

The Crossover Universe: http://www.crossoveruniverse.com/

Guest on the Lovecraft eZine Talk Show – 11/22/2015

I (Jason Aiken) was a guest on the Lovecraft eZine videochat and podcast along with Frank Schildiner. We talked with Mike Davis, Pete Rawlik, and Rick Lai about Lovecraft and Wold Newton (Philip José Farmer in particualr) related topics. We also talked about our recent writing projects. You can watch it on YouTube or listen via the podcast.
 

 
 

Pulp Crazy – The Doom that Came to Sarnath by H. P. Lovecraft

http://pulpcrazy.com/podcast/130.mp3

In this week’s episode I’ll be discussing “The Doom that Came to Sarnath” by H. P. Lovecraft. It’s a fantasy short story that made its first pulp magazine appearance in the pages of the March-April 1935 issue of  Marvel Tales of Science and Fantasy. It would later appear in the June 1938 issue of Weird Tales. It was first published in the June 1920 issue of the Scot, an amateur journal.

The story chronicles the rise and fall of the city of Sarnath, which is located on the shore of a vast still lake in the land of Mnar. The story takes place roughly from 9,081 B. C. to 8,081 B. C. in a lost age akin to Robert E. Howard’s Hyborian Age and Clark Ashton Smith’s Hyperborea.

 

Downloads:

Free Complete Works of H. P. Lovecraft eBook by Cthulhu Chick:  http://arkhamarchivist.com/free-complete-lovecraft-ebook-nook-kindle/

The Doom that Came to Sarnath etext: http://www.hplovecraft.com/writings/texts/fiction/ds.aspx

The Doom that Came to Sarnath Audio: http://cthulhuwho1.com/2013/09/07/the-worlds-largest-h-p-lovecraft-audio-links-gateway/

Links:

The Doom that Came to Sarnath @ Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Doom_that_Came_to_Sarnath

The Lovecraft e-Zine: http://lovecraftzine.com/