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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on June 5, 2011
Where history's mysteries lay gaping open, there 'Historical Lovecraft' goes, seeing to fill in the holes in time and human knowledge with eldritch horror and terrors from beyond the stars. At least that's what a good portion of the short stories contained within the book admit to using as their inspiration, which is fine by me. As someone who enjoys history and the unexplained, as well as someone who digs H.P. Lovecraft I was very happy with the answers the stories in this anthology had to offer. When I finished this book ( I was dreading finishing it, just because I was enjoying it that much), I vowed to reread it, and soon. I was going to let my spouse read it but he may have to wait while I devour the book again.

My personal faves were 'Black Hill,' an interesting take on an oil operation, 'Deus Ex Machina,' especially as an ex theatre geek, 'Shadows of the Deepest Jade,'...honestly, there wasn't a story that I didn't enjoy, though there were ones I definitely preferred over others. Innsmouth Free Press did a great job picking a wide array of subject matters and time periods. I thought the Modern Era stories would be less interesting but 'Black Hill' is honestly one of my favorites and happens within the last 200 years. Cultures, religions and governments are all fair game and rattled by not only Cthulhu but shoggoths, The Old Ones, Nyarlathotep, The Deep Ones, all answering the questions put forward by the stories. If you are only interested in stories told in the same voice of HP Lovecraft this is probably not the book for you. However, if you can appreciate that fear is eternal and calls out in a variety of voices, as well as have a thing for the ideas that Lovecraft put forth? You need to check this book out.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on June 13, 2011
Historical Lovecraft is a clever gathering of stories of good and evil, magic and reality from the dawn of time to present day. It is organized by era--antiquity, Middle Ages, etc. therefore the reader can, like me, pick first to read their era of interest. I did--antiquity. As it is with all collections of stories such as this, there are favorites, and the pick of a favorite is purely subjective. My favorite, because of its well formed character, the imaginative use of the historical setting and the uniqueness of the story, is The Good Bishop Pays the Price, by Martha Hubbard. I recommend to you the good bishop Probus and his scribe, Timos and their quirky doings in the backwaters of the Byzantine Empire. 'Amundsen's Last Run' by Nathalie Boisard-Beudin is a stand-out as well. The author's style of story telling is brilliant, taking what seems to be a normal object--as normal as an iceberg can be--and taking it to the ultimate level of speculation, making it an object of dark secrets and mystical(if not dastardly) happenings. Although William Meikle's story 'Inquisitor' contains the usual canards about the Inquisition, I ended up liking the story because of its unusual presentation.

This is a good and fun anthology, the variety of stories and styles making it a great read for a lazy summer day. Although I encountered a couple of stories of dubious understanding of the historical setting and insistence on the politically correct to the detriment of imagination, I gave the anthology five stars because it is overall wonderful and well written, containing a lot fo knowledge and research in history by the authors.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on June 19, 2011
I was delighted to see the cornucopia of original, exciting, and creepy stories in this Lovecraftian anthology. The authors whose stories appear in Historical Lovecraft use many different settings, narrative techniques, styles, and types of characters. It's a pleasure to see the jumps they make and risks they take. I enjoyed reading this collection and look forward to more from Innsmouth Free Press.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
This book is a collection of (ostensibly) Lovecraft-influenced stories set throughout the ages. Ranging from ancient Mesopotamia to the modern world, it is divided into three sections: Ancient History, Middle Ages, and the Modern Era. The stories often incorprate the history and legends of the time periods and cultures in question, something Lovecraft himself was fond of doing. With some of the stories, the connection to the Cthulhu mythos is fairly blatant, with others marginal at best (more in spirit than content). As with most collections, this is a mixed bag. However, as far as collections go I have to say these tales are consistently pretty dang good.

James Pratt, author of 'Cthelvis and Others'
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on June 20, 2011
This collection of short stories by some of the best established as well as up-and-coming authors in the weird fiction and horror genres is an excellent sample of Lovecraftian stories. It works well as an addition to an existing collection of Cthulhu Mythos works or as a stand-alone, as a reinforcement of previous works or an introduction to the style and themes. It is both an honest homage to the works of H.P. Lovecraft and a wholly new take on his portfolio. While some stories certainly stand out (Molly Tanzer's and Orrin Grey's, for example), the entire collection is well worth the read.
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on January 14, 2013
I have to say I liked this compilation quite a bit. Full disclosure, I've been an HP Lovecraft fan for 30 years and really enjoy the mythos. I enjoyed all the stories in this book, some more than others, but all met my expectations, and some were downright fun/eerie (a combination, I think, only possible in HPL's mythos). I recommend this to folks familiar with the genre. For those who aren't, may I recommend Kindle's complete works of HP Lovecraft for the ridiculous price of (at least when I'm writing this) $2.99? You can't go wrong.
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on April 15, 2014
I'd really prefer to give this 3.5 stars... there's some great stuff in it, and some stuff that's far from great, and/or barely connected to the mythos. I really enjoyed the use of alternative narrative styles, particularly the one that read like an Old Testament story, and what felt like a very conscious attempt to speak at Lovecraft's unfortunate and well-documented racism by including a broad swath of cultural perspectives in this collection. It's definitely worth having in your collection if you're a big mythos fan.
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This mixed bag of short stories is, overall, enjoyable. Some of the stories fail to conclude and just stop without resolving whatever plot was hinted at in the tale.
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on February 4, 2015
Another very enjoyable collection of Cthulhu stuff, this time spread across human history and beyond. Highly recommended. R'lyeh Rises again!
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on September 28, 2014
fun book
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