Those Mountains of Madness

I read H.P. Lovecraft’s At The Mountains of Madness (my review), and while it was interesting, it left me wanting. I didn’t love it, but I wanted to. I was sad it didn’t happen that way. This was a story I should love, or at least, that’s what I thought.

Then came along Tales to Terrify which was featuring the story. Audio books aren’t my thing but why not give it a go. It’s three podcasts and I could stop listening at anytime. Since I was already familiar with the story, it should work out fine.

Can I tell you how happy I am that I gave it a try! I *happy dance* was so happy and totally creeped out. It was everything I wanted from this story which I didn’t get from my reading experience.

I came to love the words used by Lovecraft: ‘purposeful malignancy,’ ‘morbid survival,’ ‘from nightmarish antiquity,’ and ‘cosmic octopi.’

Part one of the story is all about the staging of the expedition. Generally, I enjoyed this part of the book in both reading and listening forms. For some reason I can’t understand, I liked the lists of needed materials for the expedition. Part two was lost on me while reading but not listening. It’s an exploration of the dead city of a once thriving civilization that inhabited Earth long before humans. Shoggoths of the sea with accidental intelligence, cthulhu spawn — seriously, let those words sink in and you’ll be checking under the couch for monsters too. As part three begins, and it comes to a close, it’s pure dread mixed with remorse and a hint of foreboding — all in the name of science.

If you listen, you’ll be rewarded by the wonderfully creepy voice of Bob Nuefeld. Actually, his voice isn’t creepy at all but the perfect choice for this tale. He reads Lovecraft’s words with an incredible voice that warbles in all the right places. Also, in part two, there’s a great discussion of horror works that is absolutely worth listening to.

Go listen. Then hide from the shoggoths.

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3


I thought I’d do a re-cap of recent posts and throw in some links for fun.

First, I had the chance to interview Barbara Friend Ish, an author and independent publisher. We talked about creativity and the writing process, the business of writing, and books (of course we did!): part 1, part 2, and part 3.

I reviewed The Black Fire Concerto by Mike Allen. A great read for October. A snippet:

A post-apocalyptic place unlike the world we know. Where people eat the flesh of ghouls under the misguided belief it will prolong their lives. Where magic, light and dark, exist. Where machines are a thing of the past but knowledge of their misuse has shaped the sad state of the present. A place where humans hide not wanting to live out a half-dead fate if bitten by a ghoul. A place ruined by storms that scorched the land and transformed its people. A place where music can shape destiny. A place of creatures shaped by magic. A place full of fantastical landscapes. A place to instill wonder and fear.

My review of Mrs. Poe by Lynn Cullen appeared over at The Book Reporter. Another snippet:

Frances Osgood’s life is already complicated when she meets Edgar Allan Poe. Admiration, quickly followed by deep attraction, sends the two on a strange journey. Knowing they can’t have what their hearts both want, they deny their love and yet find themselves in a very complicated relationship that neither knows how to get out of — or if they even want out.

I also spoke to The Book Reporter about the National Book Festival which I attended a few weeks ago. My thoughts. Hint: I liked it.

On Tuesday, I’m starting a new class on historical fiction called, Plagues, Witches, and War. I’m getting excited about it so don’t be surprised to see posts about all the strange things I come across.

Have a good one readers.

So, I went to see The Hobbit

We finally got around to seeing The Hobbit this weekend, in 3D. I can’t say the 3D was worth it but a few scenes were cool. Overall, it was good but I think stretching it to three movies is, well, a stretch. What I remember is that hour and a half cartoon from childhood that managed to get everything important in there which made me wonder why Peter Jackson can’t make one two and a half hour movie that gets all the major story arcs in there with some cool effects. Many great sites have reviewed the movie so if you’re interested, google. My reason for relaying this information is entirely unrelated to the actual movie.

If you saw the movie, you probably saw the preview for The Wizard of Oz. I’m not a huge fan, mostly because of the singing. I’m not sure if there’s going to be singing in the new one but the flying monkeys are still there. I don’t get flying monkeys. Just don’t. Anyway, this happened after the preview.

Me to husband: “I don’t get flying monkeys.”

Husband: “Well, I don’t get blue police boxes.”

*sigh* He’s never going to get Doctor Who.

Now, a weekly reading round up of sorts — I finished Ashenden by Elizabeth Wilhide which was very interesting in the way it was told. I’ll have more on it soon as I plan to write a review today. Yes, today. The One I Left Behind by Jennifer McMahon was also good. I’ll have a review of that soon also because I plan to write a review of that tonight too. I’m planning to be busy later.

I bought three books the other morning: The Anubis Gates by Tim Powers, The Last Page by Anthony Huso, and Of Blood and Honey by Stina Leicht. I read a sample of The Last Page and I can’t wait to read more but first, The Wise Man’s Fear by Patrick Rothfuss. I started this shortly before heading out of town for the holidays and will pick it back up today. A few pages in and it’s as good as The Name of the Wind.

My question for you today, and getting back to the first topic of this post, did you see The Hobbit? In 3D? What did you think?

The Sunday Salon – Rory’s Dad is Arthur Weasley!

If you don’t watch Doctor Who, this will mean nothing to you. Sorry in advance. Anyway, Rory’s day is Arthur Weasley! OK, Filch was in last night’s episode too. Really, mixing two of my favorite things, Harry Potter and Doctor Who — does it get better than that in TV watching land? The correct answer is no, no it does not.

Although, I may have to stop watching Doctor Who with my husband. He doesn’t get it and says silly things like, “Why are there dinosaurs on a space ship? That makes no sense.” *big sigh* I don’t want to ruin the episode for anyone who didn’t see it but I do have to say something about Amy and Rory. We all know they’re leaving (that’s not a spoiler people!) and that’s making me sad enough because I like the Ponds but then there’s this scene at the end where the Doctor is standing behind them and looks at them so sadly. He knows it’s coming and, ack, it’s making me sad. Oh, the life of the Doctor, and the companions too. If you don’t watch, here.

So as not to make this all about Doctor Who, cuz I could, let’s talk books. I read books this week. And what were those books you ask? Let me tell you.

The Map of the Sky by Felix J. Palma — the sequel to The Map of Time. It was good and I need to write up a review today but I’m having trouble getting starting because there’s so much going on in the book and being honest, I don’t know where to start.

Abominable by William Meikle — a short story about the British mountain climber Mallory and what really happened to him. It was fun. I bought another one of Meikle’s books, Berserker, which I thought would be a good read for October. He does an excellent job with the weird creatures.

The New World by Patrick Ness — I’ve yet to read the Chaos Walking trilogy. I know. I’m the last as I tend to be with things like this. You all love it and I want to love it too but I’m not sure so I stay away. This one was a free short story download and I thought why not. I loved it. And now I think I need to see if my library has the others. You may all be right on this one.

I, on a last minute whim, decided to sign up for Book Blogger Appreciation Week. I’m a little torn about this. I want to participate but I have mixed feeling about it too. On the one hand, it’s great to find new blogs and connect with people but I don’t know how much time I’m going to have to read everything and comment. Maybe I’ll just answer a question or two and that will be it. At least they got rid of the awards this year. It’s not that I don’t appreciate things like that but they went to the same people every year and why bother if that’s what’s going to happen. Not that I don’t think those bloggers deserve the awards because they do, but it just didn’t mean much. Anyway, there you have it. I have no idea why I’m rambling on about this so I’m just going to stop.

Last week I was super productive on the blog front. So productive I managed to schedule posts through the week of October 1. No, really, I did. I even amazed myself. That means there will be reviews! Now, if I can keep this up, all will be well.

That’s all I’m going to ramble about for now. Enjoy the day and happy reading.