I've read "To Arkham and the Stars" (1966) and "The Terror from the Depths" (1976). Evidently, Leiber wrote another Cthulhu Mythos story titled "The Mind Spider" but I haven't read that one yet. My impression of "To Arkham and the Stars"* is that it was an homage to HPL, a bit tongue-in-cheek and perhaps responsible for the modern take on Miskatonic University having overt knowledge of the Cthulhu Mythos. "The Terror from the Depths" made good use of the California setting, had a compelling description of a unique house, and effectively blurred the line between physically underground and what is subconscious. A recurring opinion I have when reading Lovecraftian fiction is that when authors try to write pastiche set in a New England or another location they aren't intimately familiar with it invariably falls flat, yet when they understand his general sense of cosmicism and place the story in settings they know, especially where they have lived, it can be quite effective.
*I'd always assumed the title "To Arkham and the Stars" was a nod by Leiber towards TO QUEBEC AND THE STARS, which was a book of essays written by HPL, but the latter wasn't published until 1976 by Donald M. Grant, so I'm not sure what connection there is between those two titles.
Last Edit: Sept 11, 2019 9:09:11 GMT -5 by GRWelsh
Post by geneweigel on Sept 11, 2019 9:30:17 GMT -5
I've read so many 1960's and 1970's pulp-like digest books especially the summer of 1985 that I trawled through looking for fantasy over sci-fi in the family library upstate. I just wish I had documented what I had read or browsed because it is annoying thinking back about how that is all gone (Thanks to boorish illiterate morons going up their for "bonfires" with their junkie criminal friends.).
Who bought all of those pulp digest books, Gene? It sounds like you had people in your family past with a shared interest in weird fiction and fantasy. I had none of that. My dad's mom was a voracious reader of historical fiction -- our interests overlapped a bit with Jack London -- and her mom had a library of Westerns including all the Zane Greys. My mom's dad was also a voracious reader but it was almost all non-fiction -- he introduced me to THE GULAG ARCHIPELAGO and some of the more challenging things I read at a young age. I'm not complaining, btw -- I had plenty of relatives spoiling me by buying me comics, books, etc. in my fields of interest. Dad watched STAR TREK with me and took me to see STAR WARS, but no one was "into" sf, fantasy, and the weird like me in my family.
Post by geneweigel on Sept 11, 2019 12:56:43 GMT -5
My "uncle" (mom's first cousin) was mostly raised by my grandparents and he was the one associated with Mad Magazine's George Woodbridge and Frank Frazetta. He was personal favorite relative and was funny as hell but his last days were a sour note. I wish that I could have spent more time with him. The good die young and the scumbags live on.