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An H. P. Lovecraft Encyclopedia annotated edition Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0313315787
ISBN-10: 0313315787
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

An H.P. Lovecraft Encyclopedia, edited by S.T. Joshi and David E. Schultz, will please HPL purists, since it focuses on the weird writer's literary work with entries for individual stories, the more important poems and essays, fictional locales and characters (including every member of the German U-boat crew named in "The Temple"). Although Cthulhu and HPL's other "gods" don't receive separate entries, there's an essay-length entry on the Cthulhu Mythos. Other longer entries concisely treat such topics as HPL's juvenilia, letters and travels, but his philosophy gets short shrift for, as the editors state in their introduction: "No separate entry on Lovecraft's philosophical thought is included here, as the topic is too complex for succinct discussion." Despite such selective coverage, this is an indispensable volume.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

Lovecraft scholars Joshi (founder and editor of Lovecraft Studies) and Schultz (editor of H.P. Lovecraft's Commonplace Book) have compiled an accessible yet scholarly general encyclopedia and chronology focusing on prolific fantasy/horror author H.P. Lovecraft (1890-1937). Succinct, alphabetically arranged entries cover Lovecraft's numerous works, which include short stories, sketches, poetry, essays, novels, nonfiction, and letters. Also covered are significant characters, little-known features of the stories, and family members, associates, and critics, as well as people known to have influenced Lovecraft, e.g., Nathaniel Hawthorne. The entries for each work include type of work, word count, estimated date of writing, first publication, first appearance in a volume by Lovecraft, and subsequent appearances in corrected or annotated editions. Plot synopses of Lovecraft's fictional works are included, with at least one citation to a book or article discussing that work. Entries include footnotes and references but no cross references, and the bibliography cites both primary and secondary sources. This detailed encyclopedia is highly recommended for public and academic libraries. Laurie Selwyn, San Antonio P.L., TX
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 360 pages
  • Publisher: Greenwood; annotated edition edition (September 30, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0313315787
  • ISBN-13: 978-0313315787
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.9 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,338,636 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
For scholarly-minded Lovecraft readers who can manage the hefty price (this volume is put out by a publisher specializing in reference books for libraries, such books usually being very expensive because of low print runs and then storing these titles on inventory for many years rather than remaindering them), this is a "must-have" reference and research tool. Joshi and Schultz are, respectively, THE leading figure and one of the leading figures in Lovecraftian scholarship, and they've assembled something that is most helpful, that merits high praise for accuracy and assiduousness.
That said, the priorities of AN H.P. LOVECRAFT ENCYCLOPEDIA are somewhat perverse and leave something to be desired.
Astoundingly, there's no discussion whatsoever of Lovecraft's philosophical beliefs, a matter that coauthor Joshi has elsewhere written, and nearly all contemporary Lovecraftian scholars agree, is essential to an understanding of Lovecraft's works and life. Why not? In the preface, Joshi and Schultz write: "No separate entry on Lovecraft's philosophical thought is included here, as the topic is too complex for succinct discussion." (p. xi.) How "succinct" are we talking here, one wonders? General information encyclopedias manage to summarize the "thought" of the great original figures Western philosophy in articles ranging from a few sentences to a few pages. Surely something calling itself AN H.P. LOVECRAFT ENCYCLOPEDIA could muster a few paragraphs or a few pages about the nature of the "philosophical thought" of Lovecraft himself. (By such reasoning, there shouldn't even be such a thing as general information encyclopedias, since the sum of human knowledge is assuredly "too complex" to fit into a work of 30-odd volumes.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I gave this inch-thick book three stars because it IS full of good information, well researched, and will certainly be just what some people are looking for. For me, however, it was not at all what I expected (or wanted).

I was hoping that a 'Lovecraft Encyclopedia' would shed light on the fictional elements within his works. However, this encyclopedia concerns lovecraft's life, acquaintances, influences, etc.

Mostly.

It's inconsistent; if you look up "Azathoth," you get two paragraphs about the stories "he/it" appears in and those that inspired, but learn absolutely nothing about what Azathoth actually *is*. "Cthulhu" provides pages of info, but really nothing more than the geneology of the name "Cthulhu Mythos," and absolutely nothing at all about the character.

But if you look up "Lake," "Atwood," "Dombrowski" ... you at least do get a sentence or two about these fictional characters, though not much, really. Why include relatively unimportant fictional characters but include no information about the "heavy-hitters"?

Seriously diappointing; there's room for another book here.

I would have been happy if the book at least gave definitions for certain archaic words, such as "eldritch" and the like, words not found in a contemporary dictionary. But no. Or perhaps even a pronunciation guide for commonly mis-pronounced words.

I guess for now, if you want to know something about the entities in HPL's works, you have to buy a book related to the "Call of Cthulhu" role playing game or something.

If you need to do a term paper on the life of HPL, you may find some gold here; if you enjoy his stories but would like to understand them better, this will be of no help.
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By A Customer on December 26, 2001
Format: Hardcover
Both this book, AN H.P. LOVECRAFT ENCYCLOPEDIA and its companion volume issued at the same time by Greenwood, THE COMPLETE H.P. LOVECRAFT FILMOGRAPHY are highly recommended. Both books are scholarly, authoritative and well written. These two excellent works encompass the highest level of scholarship about Lovecraft and should be read by every fan and student of Lovecraft. Bravo to Greenwood for these two volumes.
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Format: Paperback
Although this excellent piece of work is more suited to Lovecraft's fans or people with some background on his work, it serves equally well the interests of newcomers into the subject.I shall just point out the utmost care and respect for the Master's original work, the passion and scholarship pervading every single line of the encyclopedia.I did not grade it with a fully deserved 5 stars,though....because only the Deep Ones are perfect...
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This sweeping volume covers, more than adequately, the elements and workings beyond the wall of Lovecraft's writings. After casually sampling some of Lovecraft's best, I decided to seriously pursue his fiction as well as the man himself. This fine work has proven a wonderful guide, and its insights have greatly augmented the pleasure of the journey. I must emphatically recommend this work to anyone with more than a casual interest in Lovecraft's marvelous writings.
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