By in Sci Fi & Paranormal

Horror Story Review: "From Beyond" by H. P. Lovecraft

The unnamed narrator tells the reader first of the change in his erstwhile friend, Crawford Tillinghast, who threw him out of his house when he expressed doubt about an experiment he was conducting. Tillinghast was in the midst of creating a machine that would “generate waves acting on unrecognized sense-organs that exist in us as atrophied or rudimentary vestiges.” He hopes once these “sense-organs” are opened up, the “strange, inaccessible worlds that exist at our very elbows” will be laid bare. Be careful what you wish for.

Ten weeks after being thrown out of Tillinghast’s house, the narrator is invited back and is appalled at what he sees. His friend has changed, has become a parody of man. In that short a time, he has lost so much weight he has become half of what he was. He seems haunted. Where are the servants? It seemed unlikely that old Gregory would up and leave without word. He’d been keeping the narrator up on news of Tillinghast. He at least would have said something.

While this is still a relatively early Lovecraft story, it does follow the well-establish trope of madness at peering beyond the everyday world and the horrible consequences for doing so. This is an intriguing, engaging little story that seems to have been reprinted many times since it was first published. I personally would not rank in the top tier, but it is good.

Title: “From Beyond” written in 1920, first published in The Fantasy Fan June 1934

Author: H. P. Lovecraft (1890-1937)

Source: ISFDB



© 2015 Denise Longrie

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msiduri wrote on July 19, 2015, 8:46 AM

These are more atmospheric than slasher. But I realize that Lovecraft is not everybody's cup of tea. He's able to create a wonderful, dreamlike atmosphere in many of his stories that I love, though.

MegL wrote on July 19, 2015, 9:13 AM

Some of these horror stories are much more interesting than the modern, chain-saw /blood-and-guts type horror stories of these days

msiduri wrote on July 19, 2015, 11:36 AM

I hardly pay attention to those. I've watched a couple out of curiosity but usually haven't been able to finish any, at least not sober. There. Said too much. The older horror stuff might involve a lot of overwrought mustache twirling melodrama, too, but at least is didn't (usually) rely on cutting up buxom young women to make its point.