Tempting Providence and Other Stories

Jonathan Thomas, Author
Jonathan Thomas, Hippocampus (www.hippocampuspress.com), $20 (264p) ISBN 978-0-9844802-0-3
Open Ebook - 978-1-61498-035-3
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Quirky horrors steeped in surreality distinguish Thomas's uneven second collection (after Midnight Call and Other Stories). In the title tale, a Brown alumnus's return to Providence, R.I., reacquaints him with a vision he once had of native son H.P. Lovecraft as Lovecraftian horrors appear to be encroaching on the town. "Power of Midnight" tells of an audiophile's hunt for a rare album known in collecting circles as "the Necronomicon of vinyl" and the bizarre consequences of his quest once consummated. Although written in a mannered style that won't be to every reader's taste and hobbled by clich├ęd prose ("Craig was sure these guys could set the world on fire, if only they'd quit hiding their light under a bushel") as well as excesses that editorial fine-tuning might have corrected, these stories impress with their energy and originality. (Feb.)
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