A Night In Five DialsSome music inspired by Prospero's horrific encounter:
At one point in the whole process of doing this CD I had recorded a guitar piece I had written when I was 16. It was an odd-metered finger-picking ditty that I had really liked way back when. It went unnamed for over a decade until I read a fantasy novel called "A Face in the Frost". I loved that book. Anyway, there is a chapter where the heroes (Prospero and Roger Bacon) have to spend a night in an inn. The place they stay is called 5 Dials and it turns out to be a phantasm and actually unreal place. I really liked the title "A Night in 5 Dials" so I decided that would be the ditty's name.
The Tilting HouseJennifer, the librarian of the Jean Little Library, says:
The back of [The Tilting House by Tom Llewellyn] advertises “Page-turning intrigue in the tradition of John Bellairs and Ellen Raskin”. Now, I don’t like Ellen Raskin, but there is a certain disconnected quality to the mystery that reminds me of her. If you’re a Raskin fan, this is a good thing. If you’re not….But as for John Bellairs, well, I don’t think whoever wrote that cover copy had read any of his works recently. Bellairs’ stories begin in an atmosphere of mist and confusion that grows into helpless terror.
Time For All ThingsStrange change machines? Toasters? Hot tubs? A DeLorean also makes the list, of course, that Robert Jaz culled together citing a number (ten, actually) of pop-culture's best known devices that get you from the present and into the past. But leave it to a comment by Ben Sweeney to acknowledge a certain trolley car.
Lovecraft LinksAnyone else bummed that Miskatonic University failed to make it into the NCAA tournament? Do they even have a basketball team?
- The Icy Hand of H.P. Lovecraft Still Felt Across Media
- H.P. Lovecraft's Works...At Sacred Texts?
- Lovecraft's Pokemon
- Lovecraft + Shoggoths Away!
- Pulp Fantasy Library: The Dunwich Horror
- Notes on Writing Weird Fiction by H.P. Lovecraft
- H.P. Lovecraft and the origins of 420
In the story is titled In the Walls of Eryx (1939), Lovecraft refers to the “mirage-plant” which from the description looked very much like cannabis and an incident under its influences that happens at precisely 4:20.
For those too young or squeamish for Lovecraft, there are the Johnny Dixon/Professor Childermass novels by underrated Massachusetts horror writer John Bellairs, many of them illustrated by Edward Gorey. [Kathryn Fidler (the Avant Guardian, June 30, 2010.]
I have an old friend who likes SF but does not like fantasy. He’s also a major baseball fan. I loaned him The Face in the Frost. When he got to the sequence where the wizard’s spell included “S is for Smead Jolley, the only major league player to make four errors off a single batted ball” he spluttered “Oh my God! Smead Jolley! You don’t know...” After finishing the book he concluded “I still don’t like fantasy! But I like John Bellairs!”