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The Book of Cthulhu 2 by Ross E. Lockhart

The Book of Cthulhu 2

by Ross E. Lockhart (Editor)

Other authors: Laird Barron (Contributor), Elizabeth Bear (Contributor), Michael Chabon (Contributor), John R. Fultz (Contributor), Neil Gaiman (Contributor)20 more, A. Scott Glancy (Contributor), Cody Goodfellow (Contributor), Orrin Grey (Contributor), Caitlín R. Kiernan (Contributor), Fritz Leiber (Contributor), Livia Llewellyn (Contributor), Sarah Monette (Contributor), Kim Newman (Contributor), W. H. Pugmire (Contributor), Christopher Reynaga (Contributor), Mark Samuels (Contributor), Stanley C. Sargent (Contributor), Ann K. Schwader (Contributor), Gord Sellar (Contributor), William Browning Spencer (Contributor), Molly Tanzer (Contributor), Paul Tobin (Contributor), Karl Edward Wagner (Contributor), Matt Wallace (Contributor), Jonathan Wood (Contributor)

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  lgildersleeve | May 5, 2014 |
A first-rate themed anthology is hard to find. Oh, there are tons of them available, but too often editors seem to simply throw together a couple dozen stories that loosely fit the appropriate theme without giving thought to how well the stories fit with one another. Having suffered through many such anthologies, it came as a pleasant surprise to find Ross E. Lockhart’s The Book of Cthulhu II, a recent anthology from Night Shade Books which combines good storytelling with good editing.

There are many collections inspired by H. P. Lovecraft’s Cthulhu Mythos, but few of them standout simply because the editors choose stories that are little more than Lovecraft pastiche. In The Book of Cthulhu II, editor Lockhart gathers twenty-four tales that, while inspired by the Mythos, feature the unique voice of each author and work together to create the mood of madness and despair that is the hallmark of good Mythos stories.

Lockhart has included stories by noted fantasy and sci-fi authors Neil Gaiman, Fritz Leiber, and Kim Newman but the true gems of the anthology are from the lesser known writers. Paul Tobin’s “The Drowning at Lake Henpin,” Christopher Reynaga’s “I Only Am Escaped Alone to Tell Thee,” both original to the anthology, Stanley C. Sargent’s “The Black Brat of Dunwich,” and A. Scott Glancy’s “Once More, from the Top” alone justify the cover price.

If the book has a flaw, it’s that Lockhart places too many stories inspired by Lovecraft’s “The Shadow Over Innsmouth” in the first half of the anthology. This makes the book seem a little repetitive when reading the stories in the order they are printed.

Whether new to the Mythos or a longtime fan, readers will find Ross E. Lockhart’s The Book of Cthulhu II a worthy addition to the Lovecraft world.

Received via NetGalley.

I originally wrote this review for thechantonline.com. It is reposted with permission. ( )
  amanda4242 | Mar 8, 2013 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Lockhart, Ross E.Editorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Barron, LairdContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bear, ElizabethContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Chabon, MichaelContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Fultz, John R.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Gaiman, NeilContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Glancy, A. ScottContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Goodfellow, CodyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Grey, OrrinContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Kiernan, Caitlín R.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Leiber, FritzContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Llewellyn, LiviaContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Monette, SarahContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Newman, KimContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Pugmire, W. H.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Reynaga, ChristopherContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Samuels, MarkContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Sargent, Stanley C.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Schwader, Ann K.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Sellar, GordContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Spencer, William BrowningContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Tanzer, MollyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Tobin, PaulContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Wagner, Karl EdwardContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Wallace, MattContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Wood, JonathanContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed

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Last year, Night Shade Books unleashed The Book of Cthulhu onto an unsuspecting world. Critically acclaimed as "the ultimate Cthulhu anthology" and "a 'must read' for fans of Lovecraft's Cthulhu mythos," The Book of Cthulhu went where no collection of mythos tales had gone before: to the very edge of madness... and beyond. For nearly a century, H. P. Lovecraft's tales of malevolent Great Old Ones existing beyond the dimensions of this world, beyond the borders of sanity, have captured and held the imaginations of writers and aficionados of the dark, the macabre, the fantastic, and the horrible. Now, because you demanded more, anthologist Ross E. Lockhart has risked all to dive back into the Cthulhu canon, combing through mind-shattering manuscripts and moldering tomes to bring you The Book of Cthulhu 2, with even more tales of tentacles, terror, and madness. Featuring monstrous stories by many of weird fiction's brightest lights, The Book of Cthulhu 2 brings you even more tales inspired by H. P. Lovecraft's greatest creation: The Cthulhu mythos. This year, the stars are right... I?a! I?a! Cthulhu Fhtagn!… (more)

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