Sex and the Cthulhu Mythos

Bobby Derie. Hippocampus (www.hippocampuspress.com), $20 (314p) ISBN 978-1-61498-088-9
Gahan Wilson's cover illustration of a Cthulhuoid flasher possibly says it all, but Derie boldly probes every wrinkle of his subject, from such classic H.P. Lovecraft tales as "The Call of Cthulhu" to their interface with Japanese tentacle porn, and onward even into the trivia of fan fiction. A slow start on HPL's own sex life—he didn't really have one of interest, even to himself—gets hotter when psychosexual aspects surface in the fiction. Influenced by the great Arthur Machen, Lovecraft and fellow scribes such as Robert E. Howard and August Derleth—Derleth, now he had a sex life—created the Mythos. This book is at its best covering those works, or such obvious Derie favorites as Brian McNaughton. Too bad some later figures, like the often brilliant gay Mythos writer Stanley C. Sargent, receive scant mention. Putting the topic to bed, Derie—perhaps seeking a veneer of objectivity—concludes that, sometimes, a tentacle is just a tentacle. Really? After 300 pages citing endless Cthulhu erotica? (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 11/24/2014
Release date: 09/01/2014
Genre: Nonfiction
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