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Carter & Lovecraft by Jonathan L. Howard
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Carter & Lovecraft (2015)

by Jonathan L. Howard

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9711124,414 (4.05)3
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My thanks to the folks at the Horror Aficionados group for selecting this book as the February audio group selection, this giving me the opportunity to read and discuss it, and many other fine books, with others.

I really enjoyed this book. It provided a good mix of horror and comedy that reminded me of the old TV series Kolchak: The Night Stalker. The interpersonal dynamic between ex-cop turned private eye Dan Carter and antiquarian bookstore manager Emily Lovecraft is perfect, very enjoyable.

Another thing I enjoyed about the book is that it bears out my attitude towards H.P. Lovecraft. It's my belief that he was a thoroughly loathsome individual and a writer of marginal quality, at best. The one thing he has going for him is the Cthulhu mythos that he created. It is a perfect framework that other, more talented authors than H.P., could expand upon with great success. Thank you Jonathan L. Howard for proving me right. I never entirely got a firm grasp on Howard's attitude towards Lovecraft but the fact that he made the racist and misogynistic author's great great grand niece a woman of color gave me an inkling that we were pretty much on the same page.

I don't want to relate too much of what happens for fear of spoiling other readers' enjoyment but I will say it begins with a series of inexplicable events and deaths that defy the rules of physics. From there things just get curiouser and curiouser, all the way to a really great twist at the end.

I very much hope there is a sequel in the works. This would make a great series.

BTW: Ari Fliakos did a tremendous job narrating the audio version of this book. ( )
  Unkletom | Mar 3, 2017 |
Daniel Carter, ex-homicide detective, but now private investigator is quite surprised when he learns that he has inherited a bookstore in Providence from someone he has never heard of. Emily Lovecraft is surprised and not so happy about it, she is the manager of the bookstore, and have been that for the last seven years since the owner of the bookstore disappeared. She is also H.P. Lovecraft's last descendant. Lovecraft, the man who wrote stories about the Great Old Oles and the Elder Gods. But, that's only stories, right?

If I would put together a list from last year of the books I most look forward to reading would this one be quite high up on it. So of course, I got declined at NetGalley. But, then I convinced the library in my town to purchase it. And, then I waited, and waited, 2015 become 2016 and still I waited. Then, behold, I got an email from the library that told me that the book had arrived and I skipped down to the library to pick it up. Alright, I walked down, I'm not in a Disney movie or a child.

The book was good, perhaps not as good as I wanted it to be, but I guess my expectation was off the roof by then. But it was the kind of book where I took the time to really read it, no fast reading here, but that is also quite necessary. I felt that Carter & Lovecraft is not a book that you just storm through. Or at least, that's my opinion. Also, I had waited so long to read it so I didn't want to just read it in one sitting. The plot is really interesting with Carter and Lovecraft trying to stop a man that kind bend reality at will. A man that can kill you in a car by drawing, without water.

I think my favorite part of the book was towards the end when Carter and Lovecraft really started to work together to stop the madman from destroying reality. And, what an ending. So brilliant.

Read this review and others on A Bookaholic Swede ( )
  MaraBlaise | Feb 25, 2017 |
Let me start by saying that I might be a bit biased. H.P. Lovecraft's ideas have that effect on me and it's a joy when someone takes them to a whole new level. It happened here.
That being said, Carter & Lovecraft is an extraordinary addition to this genre. I am trying to articulate what is exactly that Jonathan L. Howard has done here. I loved it.

This wonderful book with such an unassuming title hides an incredible story of an ex-cop who sees something inexplicable in the beginning of the story. The loss of his partner in a way he couldn't understand makes him leave his job and become a PI. An unexpected inheritance and later a weird phone call from a parking lot in Providence involves him in the weirdest case of his life, one that might kill him. But the good side of it all is that he meets Emily Lovecraft.
Both Daniel Carter and Emily Lovecraft are likeable characters, so I really hope this is going to be a series.

It is hard to write about the way this book is written, the things that happen to them or around them without spoilers. All chapters in the book have subtitles that are mostly either Lovecraft's titles or variations of them (e.g. 'The Shadow over Providence', 'The Thing and the Doorstep').
If you've read any of Lovecraft's stories, you'll recognize the titles and the themes. However, don't think for a moment it's same old, same old. It is definitely not!
There are so many twists (pun intended) and turns in this book I lost count. One moment you think you know where something is going, or who the villain is, and the next you are getting something downright unexpected. Plus, there are a couple of truly hair-raising moments that won't leave a horror lover indifferent. And that ending? Perfect. I honestly can't find a better way to introduce a series.

I liked Carter & Lovecraft so much that I won't even bother to list any nitpicks.

ARC provided by St. Martin's Press via NetGalley. ( )
  Aneris | Feb 15, 2017 |
*Book source ~ NetGalley

Daniel Carter became a private investigator after a homicide he was working as a detective goes horribly sideways and totally weird. He just wants to forget about it, but he can’t. When he inherits a bookstore in Providence from a someone he doesn’t know things get strange and weird all over again.

What the fuck did I just read? This is a well-written incredibly bizarre story that had me confused at times, but it didn’t detract from the sense of dread and suspense that permeates the entire story. It’s a bit too out there for my tastes and has too much confusing (to me) science fictiony-horror stuff which is why it gets a 4 instead of a 5, but it’s still a riveting tale that had me glued to the pages waiting to see what happens next. I really like Daniel and Emily and how the whole thing ties back to H.P. Lovecraft. Pretty nifty storytelling. Confusion or not, I’ll be checking out book 2 for sure to see where this whole thing is heading. ( )
  AVoraciousReader | Nov 4, 2016 |
4.5 stars

I received this from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

This was very well written, very intense, and a very fun read. I'm not very familiar with HP Lovecraft's writings and mythos, but knew enough to be able to follow the thought processes in this book. I'm sure there was some that was over my head.

That being said, I thoroughly enjoyed this one. Along with the elder-gods mythos, there was almost a noir-like atmosphere to this book. I'm definitely looking forward to the next volume in this planned series, and hopefully Mr. Howard will answer some of the many loose ends he left at the end of this one! ( )
  ssimon2000 | May 31, 2016 |
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Daniel Carter used to be a homicide detective, but his last case―the hunt for a serial killer―went wrong in strange ways and soured the job for him. Now he's a private investigator trying to live a quiet life. Strangeness, however, has not finished with him.

First he inherits a bookstore in Providence from someone he's never heard of, along with an indignant bookseller who doesn't want a new boss. She's Emily Lovecraft, the last known descendant of H.P. Lovecraft, the writer from Providence who told tales of the Great Old Ones and the Elder Gods, creatures and entities beyond the understanding of man.

Then people start dying in impossible ways, and while Carter doesn't want to be involved, he's beginning to suspect that someone else wants him to be. As Carter reluctantly investigates, he discovers that H. P. Lovecraft's tales were more than just fiction, and he must accept another unexpected, and far more unwanted, inheritance.
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