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At the Mountains of Madness (Modern Library) [Paperback]

H.P. Lovecraft
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
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Book Description

4 Aug 2005 Modern Library
Long acknowledged as a master of nightmarish visions, H. P. Lovecraft established the genuineness and dignity of his own pioneering fiction in 1931 with his quintessential work of supernatural horror, At the Mountains of Madness. The deliberately told and increasingly chilling recollection of an Antarctic expedition s uncanny discoveries and their encounter with untold menace in the ruins of a lost civilization is a milestone of macabre literature. This exclusive new edition, presents Lovecraft s masterpiece in fully restored form, and includes his acclaimed scholarly essay ''Supernatural Horror in Literature.'' This is essential reading for every devotee of classic terror.

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At the Mountains of Madness (Modern Library) + The Call of Cthulhu (Prohyptikon Value Classics)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Modern Library Inc; Definitive Ed edition (4 Aug 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0812974417
  • ISBN-13: 978-0812974416
  • Product Dimensions: 20.7 x 14 x 1.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 115,206 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


One of the greatest short novels in American literature, and a key text in my own understanding of what that literature can do. --Michael Chabon

Lovecraft' s fiction is one of the cornerstones of modern --Clive Barker

From the Back Cover

"These tales of horror are in the true gothic tradition – full of hinted terrors and unholy stenches".

--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The greatest of H. P. Lovecraft's horror stories 13 Dec 2002
By A Customer
"At the Mountains of Madness" is far and away the best of H. P. Lovecraft's tales of the Cthulhu Mythos. Once upon a time I would have thought "The Haunter of the Dark" was the best, but I heared Rod Serling explain once that Lovecraft wrote that particular short story as something of a in-joke (the victim is "really" author Robert Bloch; the two were taking turns killing each other off in stories). However, this novella has a scope and intensity that goes beyond any of Lovecraft's short stories.
I have always thought that "At the Mountains of Madness" would make a great film, even though I shudder at what Hollywood would do with its tendency to rely on special effects, the lessons of "The Blair Witch Project," "The Others," and "The Mothman Prophecies" to the contrary. However, I must admit that I notice Lovecraft's story contains elements of two of my all time top-10 science fiction/horror films, "The Thing From Another Planet" and "Five Million Years to Earth" (a.k.a. "Quatermass and the Pit"); think the claustrophobic arctic environment of the former and the discover of eldritch demons from the latter. Here we have an expedition from Miskatonic University that makes a startling discover buried beneath the snow of strange ancient creatures. When the expedition is slaughtered and the creates they found are taken away, a search team makes the grave mistake of following the trail to an immense ruined city.
I am sure I do not have to tell you how big of a mistake this ends up being.
I can remember staying up late at night reading this story, completing captivated and descending into terror step by step along with the doomed protagonists of the story. "The Mountains of Madness" achieves a level of pure terror that I never found in Poe.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A masterpiece of horror plus extras 29 Nov 2002
At the Mountains of Madness is one of Lovecraft's most singular, lengthy, and important pieces of fiction. Set in the cold wastes of Antarctica, it takes us far afield from the mysterious world of Lovecraft's New England yet in close proximity to the mythical framework of his most noted writings. A cadre of scientists from Miskatonic University travels to the coldest continent in order to pursue important geological work, but their mission is quickly transformed by one team's discovery of an ancient cavity housing hordes of scientific specimens at the base of an undiscovered range of weird, majestic mountains. The most important specimens found in the pit are largely intact bodies of terrifically strange creatures having both animal and vegetable characteristics and sporting immense, bat-like wings. As the first team begins a study of the creatures, the other party members rush to the campsite. However, they find only death, destruction, and mystery there when they arrive. Mysterious caves, peculiar shapes, and other incredible aspects of the adjacent mountains leads the expedition leader to dub them "the mountains of madness." Scientific curiosity impels two of the men to fly over those mountains to see what lies on the other side. What they find is an empty, ancient city, which they set out to explore. Statues and strange hieroglyphics lead the men to conclude that this city was once the most revered spot of the Old Ones mentioned in the Necronomicon and the Pnakotic Manuscripts, a city built long before man's first ancestors walked the earth. As they move deeper within the bowels of the city, they discover that it is not quite deserted after all. Read more ›
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Master of horror, at his best! 18 July 2014
By Steve
This is the longest of lovecrafts stories and the best example of how his tales build tension, and the atmospheric horror he was famous for. Told in a first person perspective, at the mountains of madness recounts a failed expedition to the vast unexplored lanscapes of Antartica. Shortly after arriving at their campsite, one of the group sets out on a solo trip in one of the planes. He sends word to the rest of the party that he has made several amazing discoveries, discoveries that defy belief. He relays several updates back to an excited camp and informs them of large, apparent fossils which he has managed to make ready for the return flight, but which seem to set the huskies on edge.
Soon after the contact stops, leaving the party no choice but to set out on a rescue mission. As the two man rescue party finally spot the landing site of their missing member and land the plane, they are met with a scene of disturbing signs.
From this point on, Lovecraft builds the terror expertly but never shows the creature or presence that is overshadowing every step the explorers take. The setting of Antarctica is used as one of the characters in this tale to great effect. Lovecraft uses the isolation as a sharpening stone to the growing paranoia of the explorers.
This is a master of atmospheric horror at his best!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent read but book in bad condition 24 July 2014
I buy and read a lot of books and usually have to re-read the synopsis to remind myself what they were about.
This book made quite an impact on me and has stayed clearly in my mind. Good descriptive story writing and still easily readable today as I'm sure it was when written.
On the down side, I bought this book as "used - very good" but it was actually "used - very bad". Pages all yellowed and coming away from the spine so it went in the bin after I had read it
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Anyway good luck to the script writer in fashioning a movie
I bought this book after reading how it has been years in preproduction (meaning never brought to resemble a movie script). Read more
Published 24 days ago by andrew cummings
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Book
Some people criticise Lovecraft for his turgid style, but I think it adds to the creepy menace of his books, The Mountains of Madness being a fine example. Read more
Published 3 months ago by E. Orr
5.0 out of 5 stars Read it ! ! ! ! !
This book is truly great, an amazing read.
Everyone should have a copy.
Haven't enjoyed a book as much in years.
Published 3 months ago by a hall
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book!
The guy was a master of conjuring strange imagery with words. It is not terrifying, but it is a good mystery with other worldly peril. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Jim Grey
5.0 out of 5 stars My Favourute Lovecraft story
My favourite horror story by the master. My favourite sci-fi horror movie of all-time is ALIENS (directors cut version) but this story by Lovecraft is even better. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Setlu
5.0 out of 5 stars great
Well recommended. Great item and breand new. Great addition to anyones collection. A must for any avid fans. Worth it.
Published 7 months ago by J JEFFERY
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant book
Always loved this story as one of my favourites but this is the first time I've owned my own copy. I'd recommend all book lovers own a copy of this.
Published 10 months ago by Dazz
5.0 out of 5 stars Ahead of its time even today!!!
I picked this book up when i heard Guillermo del toro was going to make a movie on it. Before you begin to read the book please keep in mind the book was written in circa 1931 and... Read more
Published 12 months ago by Alex
4.0 out of 5 stars lovecraft: at the mountains of madness
fans of the older horror genre know what to expect with Lovecraft and this does not disappoint. a worthy addition to my horror library.
Published 14 months ago by ph42
5.0 out of 5 stars Lovecraft - imitated but not surpassed
I read this over 30 years ago and have never forgotten it! Old fashioned style and lots of detail but he builds the suspense well.
Published 15 months ago by Anna Dundas
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