Mainstreamed Nightmares

Ligotti becomes the story in The Wall Street Journal:

Mr. Ligotti’s stories are light on action and heavy on dread. Their motifs include puppets, harlequins, dying towns, deranged loners and the notion that humanity is an aberration spat out by a chaotic void. “There’s an inevitability about his fiction—of decay, rot, horror, the slow and unavoidable descent into darkness—that I find irresistible,” said Livia Llewellyn, a Shirley Jackson Award-nominated writer who contributed a story to “The Grimscribe’s Puppets,” an anthology tribute to Mr. Ligotti edited by Mr. Pulver. According to the scholar and critic S.T. Joshi, Mr. Ligotti is one of the premier writers of so-called weird fiction over the past 50 years. But Mr. Joshi isn’t convinced of the author’s appeal beyond the genre. “Without a thorough familiarity with [Messrs. Poe and Lovecraft], some readers may not ‘get’ what Ligotti’s tales are about, or come away with an incomplete understanding of them,” he said. Others, such as Mr. VanderMeer, said Mr. Ligotti has transcended Mr. Lovecraft’s shadow.

2 thoughts on “Mainstreamed Nightmares

  1. Hmmm… I’ve never read anything by Lovecraft, save snipets here and there. Yet, I don’t find Ligotti hard to understand. Perhaps, mr. Joshi overestimates his own knowledge of the genre. If Ligotti is right, horror (or the capacity for it) resides in consciousness itself, so whether or not Lovecraft may be seen as the father of the genre, it does not mean that one has to undergo all the historical steps to get it.

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  2. Pingback: Mainstreamed Nightmares II | Time Spiral Press

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