Monday, November 12, 2007

Call of Cthulhu in 1929's Deware After Dark

Here are a few anecdotes about this book. First up, the Brown University Library Shows this information:

The Howard P. Lovecraft Collection
Macaulay Company Publishers
Macaulay Company Publishers to Lovecraft, Howard P 1929 Aug 14 Box: 25 accession Number: A32500 [2h] 1 p.
Enclosing $15.00 check for publishing "The Call of Cthulhu" in Beware after Dark. On verso of HPL Fiction: The Whisperer in Darkness (ADfS), 22.


Then there's this:

Letter to Lester Anderson From Clark Ashton Smith
Auburn, Cal.July 31st, 1934

...I must confess that I failed to overenthuse over that yarn myself. After reading Creeps by Night, I came to the conclusion that my literary tastes were almost directly opposite to those of Dashiell Hammett. Harre's Beware after Dark is still unapproached in my opinion, as an anthology of weirds.

[s] Clark Ashton Smith


When it appeared in Weird Tales, "The Call of Cthulhu" impressed many of that magazine's readers, including Robert E. Howard, the creator of Conan, who was moved to write to "The Eyrie," the Weird Tales letters column: "Mr. Lovecraft's latest story, 'The Call of Cthulhu,' is indeed a masterpiece, which I am sure will live as one of the highest achievements of literature. Mr. Lovecraft holds a unique position in the literary world; he has grasped, to all intents, the worlds outside our paltry ken. His scope is unlimited, and his range is cosmic."The tale also attracted the attention of an anthologist, T. Everett Harré, who reprinted it in a volume entitled Beware After Dark! (1929). (The Annotated H.P. Lovecraft, S T Joshi)


Finally, as seen on ebay: "BEWARE AFTER DARK!", PUBLISHED by MACAULAY COMPANY, FIRST EDITION, 1929 - One of the scarcest and most frequently overlooked of early horror anthologies, this lovely 460+ page hardcover was edited by T. Everett Harre, popular author of 'Behold the Woman' and 'One Hour - And Forever'. With a wonderful subtitle - "The World's Most Stupendous Tales of Mystery, Horror, Thrills and Terror" - it was the first major American publisher to anthologize H.P. Lovecraft, featuring 'The Call of Cthulhu'. Also included is Edmond Hamilton's first story, 'The Monster-God of Mamurth', as well as stories from E. F. Benson, Gouverneur Morris, Cynthia Stockley, Irvin S. Cobb, Lafcadio Hearn, Ellen Glasgow, Edward Lucas White, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Leonid Andreyeff, S. Carleton, Arthur Machen, Bassett Morgan, Robert Louis Stevenson, George W. Bayly, E. Philllips Oppenheim, Beatrice Grimshaw, M.P. Shiel, John Fleming Wilson and Gertrude Atherton. Eclectic and fascinating lineup. The book is complete; binding is solid, paper quality remains good; very minor spine lean; wear at extreme top/bottom of spine/cover corners; thin strip of shadowing along extreme right side of front of cover. Some nicks to page edges; overall light wear. Not mint, but quite solid - and very difficult to find. (Starting Bid $19.99)

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