At the Mountains of Madness
"A chilling tale of classic horror by H. P. Lovecraft..."
An expedition to the Antarctic meets with a gruesome fate, and survivors of a horrific attack on their camp discover the ancient ruins of an alien city concealed by a mountain range. While exploring the ruins, Prof. Dyer and a graduate student unexpectedly encounter a monstrous creature still alive, and they flee the mountain in terror. As their plane lifts off to safety, Dyer's companion catches a glimpse of something so horrifying, he is driven over the edge into madness. Now, Dyer must retell the story to prevent a new expedition from returning to the deadly ice world lost in time.
At the Mountains of Madness is one of the most popular stories by H.P. Lovecraft, an early 20th-century writer who never achieved publishing success and died young at 46, broke and unknown; but today, he is widely recognized as one of history's greatest horror writers. Iconic author Steven King observed: “Now that time has given us some perspective on his work, I think it is beyond doubt that H.P. Lovecraft has yet to be surpassed as the twentieth century's greatest practitioner of the classic horror tale.”
This Classic Edition is a restyled update of a public domain title, lightly edited for modern readers and professionally formatted for enhanced readability and visual appeal. It is part of a series of literature classics published by Virtual University Press for the reading enjoyment of book lovers around the world. We also publish companion study guides, workbooks, and academic editions intended for classroom use by literature and writing students and home-schoolers.
Lovecraft's At the Mountain of Madness opens with a newspaper announcement of a voyage to Antarctica, immediately followed by the narrator, Professor William Dyer stating his opposition to it. From there, the book launches into the story of Dyer's own, earlier expedition to the Antarctic wasteland, one that culminated in murder and horror in the aforementioned mountains. Lovecraft was a master of writing about indescribable horrors whose visages violate the laws of nature in unsettling ways. Right off the bat, this creates a problem for anyone seeking to translate his work into a visual medium: how to keep the sense of unspoken tension and dread? Artist I.N.J. Culbard addressed this concern admirably by telling the story largely through radio broadcasts, which forces the reader to feel the tense isolation felt by the explorers as they uncover progressively horrific mysteries from the Antarctic ice. Culbard also effectively threads a sense of dread throughout the book with subtle touches of the macabre, such as a glimpse of two blind penguins swimming in the foreground of an early frame. This is one of Lovecraft's most famous stories. Although it is questionable whether it needed an adaptation, this is an excellent one.