This anthology of seven eerie, suspenseful tales by the legendary H.P. Lovecraft includes three that involve his famous mythology of the Ancient Ones—especially the monstrous entity, Yog-Sothoth—as well as the grimoire of black magic known as the Necronomicon.
“In the Vault” – After finding himself locked in a tomb, a despicable, cantankerous undertaker successfully escapes by stacking six occupied coffins to create a platform, allowing him to reach a small opening above the door. However, just before crawling free, his leg punches through the lid of the top coffin, leaving him with wounds that were not merely inflicted by jagged wood.
“Pickman’s Model” – An artist of the macabre develops a new and startlingly realistic style when he begins painting demonic figures too grotesque to be displayed in public, but where did he find this latest inspiration?
“The Rats in the Walls” – After restoring the cursed, ruined estate of his ancestors, a young man begins hearing rats scurrying in the walls. An exploration of the cellar reveals an opening to a large chamber, the contents of which divulge the true and terrible history of the property.
“The Music of Erich Zann” – Each night, on the top floor of an apartment building, an elderly violinist plays a haunting, otherworldly melody—and receives a response from somewhere beyond our dimension.
“The Haunter of the Dark” – Robert Blake takes an unhealthy interest in the ruins of a long-abandoned Gothic church whose distant spires are visible from his apartment window. After venturing across town, Blake learns that local residents fear the church and do not speak of it. Undaunted, Blake presses on and finds a way inside. While exploring, he encounters an artifact that conjures frightening visions of the Ancient Ones—one of which is soon unleashed.
“The Dunwich Horror” – In the isolated, backwoods village of Dunwich, Massachusetts, the primitive Whateley family welcomes a grandson named Wilbur, born of Lavinia and an unnamed father who is believed to be the ancient creature known as Yog-Sototh. Other villagers become fearful of Wilbur’s rapid physical development and inhuman countenance—not to mention the strange growling and rumbling from the surrounding hills that began after his birth. Following Lavinia’s unexplained death, Wilbur and his grandfather begin boarding up the windows of their home as if to imprison something inside. After the deaths of Old Man Whateley, then of Wilbur, the invisible creature bursts from its confinement to wreak havoc on the village. Three professors from nearby Miskatonic University undertake a mission to destroy the creature using the Necronomicon, the grimoire of black magic that initially spawned the beast.“The Thing on the Doorstep” – Edward Derby, an intelligent, but weak-willed young man with an interest in the macabre, marries a homely, eccentric woman named Asenath who is reputed to have a beguiling effect on others. It is claimed by some that once captured by her stare, they found themselves gazing upon their own bodies through Asenath’s eyes. It isn’t long before Derby undergoes a bizarre and dangerous change of demeanor.
Phil Giunta’s novels include the paranormal mysteries Testing the Prisoner, By Your Side, and Like Mother, Like Daughters. His short stories appear in such anthologies as Love on the Edge, Beach Pulp, Space Opera Digest 2022, A Plague of Shadows, the Middle of Eternity series, Hard-Boiled and Loaded with Sin, and more. He is a Pushcart Prize-nominated author and member of the Horror Writers Association, the National Federation of Press Women, and the Greater Lehigh Valley Writers Group.
We are always glad to feature stories from Phil in our Devil’s Party Press anthologies. You will love Phil’s writing! Phil is currently working on his fourth paranormal mystery novel while plotting his triumphant escape from the pressures of corporate America where he has been imprisoned for thirty years. Visit Phil’s website at www.philgiunta.com.
Find him on Facebook: @writerphilgiunta, Instagram: @phil_giunta71, and BlueSky: pgiunta.bsky.social