Melinda Chadwick's Reviews > At the Mountains of Madness

At the Mountains of Madness by H.P. Lovecraft
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Mar 15, 08

Read in March, 2008

"...I could not help feeling that they were evil things-- mountains of madness whose farther slopes looked out over some accursed ultimate abyss. That seething , half-luminous cloud-background held ineffable suggestions of a vague, ethereal beyondness far more than terrestrially spatial; and gave appalling reminders of the utter remoteness, separateness, desolation, and aeon-long death of this untrodden and unfathomed austral world."

This book would make a great movie, in my opinion, if done correctly. It was first published in 1932 so the language is a little archaic. Once I got past the general tone and complete lack of dialogue, I really enjoyed it. (And, incidentally, the book reminded me a lot of "Alien." The extremely inhospitable environment... The inhumanness of the antagonist... The sense of mystery running through the storyline.)

And let me say... this book freaked my shit out for a couple of days. It's not like a lot of contemporary horror-- but to be honest, I haven't read a lot of contemporary horror. Just "Carrie" and "The Shining" but I guess I'm thinking more about today's horror films where, for whatever reason, the director can never resist revealing absolutely everything. And Lovecraft just doesn't show you everything he's got up his sleeve. He gives you a little bite at a time and makes your mind fill in the rest. I think that's what makes it so damn creepy. I read the first three chapters on Monday and had nightmares for the next three nights. (And I would like to note that it's the first three chapters that are the scariest part of the whole book anyway. The middle gets a little overcooked at one point. But I digress...)

But I'm glad I gave Lovecraft a chance. I appreciate what he did for his art and I wish more writers would follow in his footsteps in leaning toward more subtlety. Is Cthulhu calling my name? Perhaps.
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Quotes Melinda Liked

H.P. Lovecraft
“I could not help feeling that they were evil things-- mountains of madness whose farther slopes looked out over some accursed ultimate abyss. That seething , half-luminous cloud-background held ineffable suggestions of a vague, ethereal beyondness far more than terrestrially spatial; and gave appalling reminders of the utter remoteness, separateness, desolation, and aeon-long death of this untrodden and unfathomed austral world.”
H.P. Lovecraft, At the Mountains of Madness


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