Book: At the Mountains of Madness


I first heard of H.P Lovecraft through Supernatural. Yes, you got that right. I heard about an author through a television show. It piqued my interest in him and the more read about who he was, the more I fell in love. Since then I’ve been trying read some of his stories. I managed to get my hands on The thing on the doorstep and other weird stories, but I never found the time to read it. I regret it immensely on hindsight. And then H.P Lovecraft’s “silver key” appeared in Warehouse 13 and by then there was no excuse not to be reading his work. So when I laid hands on the novella at the mountains of madness, I was determined to read it.

A short story of only 102 pages, it’s a huge leap from the more children orientated fiction I’ve been reading lately. But, I have to admit that it feels SO GOOD to be back in adult literature. Can I just start by praising H.P. Lovecraft and his masterful storytelling. At the mountains of madness is a brilliant read. It’s unfortunately not for everyone.

The book starts off really dry and slow. It documents an expedition to Antarctica in great scientific detail. It was painful to get through but so worth it later. I am of the opinion that Lovecraft’s greatest strength is in his understanding and detailed description of the sciences. It’s very apparent in this book that he paid a good deal of attention on biology and then entire process of getting together n expedition and the scientific reasons behind it. Indeed his book is steeped in science that it makes the tale all the more credible and realistic.

What I loved most about the book is the sense of growing realization. There’s brilliant foreshadowing or in some cases outright statements on the horror that is contained within the book. Yet, despite of that, there is still a wonderfully constructed tension and the feeling of suspense. It’s really amazing how the books draws you in, slowly but surely. The atmosphere of fear and horror continues to intensify as the book progresses. There is a slow and steady climb to the climax and as more information is uncovered, the greater the sense of realization as to the horrors that lie before the characters.

The characters aren’t the focus of this book, instead it is the lore and legends that Lovecraft has created that fill this book with the madness that it promises. I definitely recommend this book, especially since we’re in the month of Halloween. It’s science fiction and horror at it’s best.

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Comments
3 Responses to “Book: At the Mountains of Madness”
  1. Genki Jason says:

    Nice review. Lovecraft can be hit and miss but when he’s good his stories are really gripping. You should read The Haunter in the Dark and The Colour Out of Space.

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  1. […] into the future and the discoveries he makes there. The plot is actually really similar to “At The Mountains of Madness” by H.P. Lovecraft. They both have scientific background that serves as an introduction to the main […]



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