Black Wings of Cthulhu (Volume Three)
Tales of Lovecraftian Horror
More dark tales of eldritch horror set in the Cthulhu Mythos universe, first created by horror master H.P. Lovecraft
Volume three of the critically acclaimed Black Wings series offers seventeen original tales of horror, following in the footsteps of the master. Stephen King has called H. P. Lovecraft “the twentieth century’s greatest practitioner of the classic horror tale,” and his influence continues unabated.
These new offerings of cosmic terror come from many of the genre’s greatest modern acolytes, including Jason V Brock, Donald R. Burleson, Mollie L. Burleson, Peter Cannon, Sam Gafford, Richard Gavin, Lois Gresh, Mark Howard Jones, Caitlín R. Kiernan, Joseph S. Pulver, Sr., Darrell Schweitzer, Jessica Amanda Salmonson and W. H. Pugmire, Simon Strantzas, Brian Stableford, Jonathan Thomas, Donald Tyson, and Don Webb.
The 20 short stories in Lovecraft scholar Joshi's fifth Black Wings anthology include some imaginative variations on familiar themes of mind-bending encounters with cosmic horrors. Nicole Cushing's "Diary of a Sane Man" is especially effective at transforming a comfortable, mundane setting a well-to-do suburban neighborhood into a nightmare realm as an academic goes for his nightly walk during a snowstorm. In Sam Gafford's "Casting Fractals," a journalist's study of a dead colleague's notes, which at first appear to be mere ravings, allows him to glimpse the hidden force behind the major tragic events of the mid-20th century, from political assassinations to earthquakes and other natural disasters. And Stoker Award winner Caitl n R. Kiernan demonstrates the effectiveness of incremental, subtle suggestion in "Far from Any Shore," about the terrifying aftermath of the unearthing of an artifact. Though there are some clunky attempts at mimicking Lovecraft's sometimes baroque prose ("Stepping out of my hateful vehicle I spoke the remembered formula, pushing spectral language into the hungry wind"), most entries are high quality. Fans of Lovecraft pastiches will be satisfied.