Monday, October 31, 2011

"The Outsider" by H. P. Lovecraft

Here it is, my last post for my October Horror Story Challenge!! I'm really pleased that I stuck it out, and although the last week I was in overtime to make up for the few posts that I missed, I'm happy I was able to see it through to completion.

So now onto Lovecraft's "The Outsider". I am very happy that the book ended with this story, what better way to end a collection of classic horror stories than with one of the best genre authors? After spending his life in isolation and darkness, a young man seeks out human company, and learns more about himself than he cared to ever know.. (And honestly if I said any more, it would pretty much give away the entire story).

Lovecraft has a way of making you sympathize with the protagonist of this story, and I felt quite sad for him, growing up away from human warmth and affection and instead given the company of darkness, bats, rats, and spiders. This is how monsters are created, don't they know psychology and criminology?! People need human attention to grow properly, whether or not they're 'normal'. Still though, it's the tragic plight of the narrator that causes you to just feel sorry for him, whether or not he's truly an outsider to mankind (nay, to the world as a whole).

Although, I have to admit a chill went up my spine when he was in the newly emptied room, after the entirety of the party guests fled from the castle. Every kind of monster ran through my head, and I think it was pretty clever of Lovecraft to not describe the figure itself, just the emotions of horror and despair felt after seeing it.

So, that does it for reviews for my October challenge. Happy Halloween!! Enjoy the reviews, and feel free to post your reactions to my posts or to the stories themselves if you've read them!

- Justin

1 comment:

  1. My favorite Lovecraft stories are The Thing on the Doorstep, The Shadow over Innsmouth and Herbert West-Reanimator (which unfortunately has one of the most racist moments in I have ever read in literature. It was AWFUL and so distracting and damn you Lovecraft for being an insufferable racist!)

    While Poe and Shirley Jackson, Joyce Carol Oates and of course, Stephen King, are my favorite horror writers, Lovecraft is still important to the canon, even with his deplorable racism.