All of the stories at least have their momments. All of them feature interesting takes on the mythos, but some have little more than "interesting" to...moreAll of the stories at least have their momments. All of them feature interesting takes on the mythos, but some have little more than "interesting" to them, and several seem to have completely missed the point and made humans far too important to the old ones... Even with these flaws, many of the stories made up for their stretching of the mythos by simply going with it and writing really cool weird stories, and, overall I think that's more the point.(less)
Kent Kelly's Necronomicon is an excellent addition to the long list of "Necronomicon"s on the market. It follows more of a story approach than a grimo...moreKent Kelly's Necronomicon is an excellent addition to the long list of "Necronomicon"s on the market. It follows more of a story approach than a grimoire which was a pleasant surprise. The writing seems pretty believable, excepting a few paragraphs that sound like they're written by Kent rather than Abd... descriptions from a historical perspective that just sounds a little too complete and modern. Aside from this, my only complaint is that when I think of ancient texts from the mythos, I imagine illustrations of mystical symbols, and unfathomable creatures, which were sadly missing. In the same vein, the formatting is somewhat underwhelming. The ebook just seems like it could have used a little better production value.
As for the story itself... I like it. I was really expecting the somewhat predictable result of Abd's quest to be disappointing, but, despite being predictable, it's well-formulated and creates a great lead-in for the ending. The whole story read like a series of short lovecraftian-horror-meets-fantasy-adventure stories interspersed with bits of behind the scenes info that only the Mad Arab himself should know.This would have made a brilliant horror rpg campaign, and with some slight modification it wouldn't even have to be one-player. I really hope Kent continues this project, perhaps giving more auto-biographical information about Kent's experience in translating such a disturbing work. I also hope to see more revealing side-notes from Dr. John Dee and Clarice Whateley.(less)
I like to think to think that the Arkham Horror series takes place in an alternate version of the Cthulhu mythos where all of the depressing things a...more
I like to think to think that the Arkham Horror series takes place in an alternate version of the Cthulhu mythos where all of the depressing things about the twenties (racism, sexism, etc.) are drastically reduced and the monsters, rather than being hid away, are everywhere but simply ignored. In the first regards, it reminds me of the Society for Creative Anachronism. In the second, it reminds me of a theme park ride. From a Lovecraftian purist perspective, it fails in two other ways: The tone is pure pulp adventure, rather than isolated horror, and it brings in far too many aspects of the mythos at once to believably fit in with HPL's world. All of this said, as soon as you let go of what you expect a Cthulhu mythos story (and the 20s) to be, it's a pretty good story. It's fun in a slightly cheesy way. My only real arguments against the book are that it takes a good several chapters to acclimate to this alternate version of the mythos and, more importantly, those first several chapters would not shut up about how weird and "off" Arkham is. I prefer a version of the mythos where not everyone and their grandmother is aware of how screwed up Arkham is, but the least the author could do is not give every single character a multiple-page monologue about it. Sheesh! All together, still a fun book. I'll probably read the sequel, but I certainly won't be making it a high priority.(less)