A splendid collection of unique Lovecraftian horror where the Dreamlands and Yog-Sothothery become one in a fantastic and umbral valley. Whereas much Cthulu Mythos fiction references the exterior facets of Lovecraft's creations, the squamous space horrors, the forbidden books and poorly-equipped students of esoteric lore, Pugmire keys into the poignancy Lovecraft's best work evoked. The characters herein are all outsiders yet we feel for them as we follow their weird and wonderful relationships. There is no simplistic dualism of good and evil, there is instead a complexity and depth to Sesqua Valley and its inhabitants that makes us understand them and turns them into mirrors for the odd aspects that we all possess.
Also, alongside the Lovecraftian tales, are original tales of horror such as The Zanies of Sorrow, which echoes Oscar Wilde's darker explorations of human nature, and A Vestige of Mirth, which contains more than a hint of Thomas Ligotti's bleak puppetry. In short, this is a collection of poetic terrors that I would recommend to those who love fiction that is original, beautiful and poignantly disturbing.