A look at Volume 3 of the three volume H. P. Lovecraft’s Collected Fiction: A Variorum Edition. Or is it only three volumes?This third volume from Hippocampus Press includes some of H. P. Lovecraft’s best known works including his longer, more science fiction oriented stories.
H. P. Lovecraft’s Collected Fiction: A Variorum Edition Volume 1: 1931-1936
This volume covers the final six years of completed fictional works, but it also includes a few odd additions. Oddly enough, the editor decided to include the stories Lovecraft wrote as a child in this volume, instead of the first.
The inclusion of Through the Gates of the Silver Key is also an odd edition as it was one of the so called ‘revisions’ that Lovecraft did for E Hoffmann Price – but thematically given that it is a direct sequel to The Silver Key, is a nice addition. Joshi also notes that he reverted a spelling on Dholes to bholes as in the original manuscript, for good reason.
So far, I have found only one error in this wonderful book set, and that was in this volume. Some words were repeated in The Dreams of the Witch House. While I have the feeling that my colleagues over on SFF Chronicles will chide me for not finding more -I could not.
Works Included in Volume 3
- At the Mountains of Madness
- The Shadow over Innsmouth
- The Dreams in the Witch House
- Through the Gates of the Silver Key
- The Think on the Doorstep
- The Book
- The Shadow out of Time
- The Haunter in the Dark
- The Little Glass Bottle
- The Secret Cave
- The Mystery of the Grave Yard
- The Mysterious Ship (short version)
- The Mysterious Ship (long version)
Fragments and Other
- The Very Old Folk
- Discarded Draft of “The Shadow over Innsmouth”
- The Evil Clergyman
- Cigarette Characterization
- Of Evill Sorceries done in New England, of Daemons in No Humane Shape
Volume 4 Coming?
Given the interest in this three volume set and the inclusion of Through the Gate of the Silver Key – you may be asking yourself about the revisions. Word is that Hippocampus Press is preparing a single volume Volume 4 to contain all of the revision stories. I have also recently heard that the single volume from Hippocampus Press was pushed back on release.
A recently released two volume set including Medusa’s Coil and Others and The Crawling Chaos and Others from Miskatonic Press / Arcane Wisdom Press, which deserve reviews in their own right would seem to complete your bookshelf, however I have recently heard that some stories were left out as the rights to those could not be secured. They also are not variorum versions either.
So do you wait for the Hippocampus Press Volume 4? I intend on getting it anyway as the introductory information and revision information are valuable in themselves. I am also curious how Hippocampus Press hopes to pack so many stories into a single volume, and if they will be able to include some stories that Miskatonic Press was unable to secure.
Is the Variorum Worth It?
Absolutely. In fact, if you act fast, it is possible to get this three volume set at a huge discount from the publisher – a mere $99 for what others happily spent $150-$180. If you want one set of complete works of H. P. Lovecraft that you can trust to use as an authoritative source for literary discussion – this is it.