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Sunday, March 4, 2018

Review: Shoggoth

Shoggoth Shoggoth by Byron Craft
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Review: SHOGGOTH by Byron Craft

For a Lovecraft devotee such as myself, to discover a new Mythos author is sheer delight. SHOGGOTH is my first reading of Byron Craft. I perhaps chose SHOGGOTH to read first, because I spent January invested in rereads (and listening) of Lovecraft' s "At the Mountains of Madness," in which those bizarre creations, the Shoggoth, figure so prominently.

In this novel, the setting is not the frozen wilds of early 20th century Antarctica, but the U.S. Naval Weapons Center at China Lake, California. Deep in the Mojave Desert are petroglyphs tens of thousands of years old, inexplicable hieroglyphs, and impossible monsters. For the history and science we learn in school missed out on a lot, including Elder Gods.

SHOGGOTH strongly resonates with HPL' s "At the Mountains of Madness" and "The Shadow Out of Time," with the latter's explication of a long-term "Walk-In" experience caused by a race of Elder Gods (regardless of the effect on the human recipient). Mr. Croft also strums one of Lovecraft' s most cherished themes: when science and philosophy's driving quest for knowledge meets that which humanity is not meant to discover, something's gonna break (usually sanity).

I had a totally enjoyable time reading SHOGGOTH. In fact, I found myself envying the characters their exploration of hidden prehistory and their Lovecraftian encounters.


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