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Introduction to Thomas Ligotti
Posted by: justlookaway (IP Logged)
Date: 26 September, 2012 11:56AM
I'm relatively young, so I hope that excuses me from only just now discovering Thomas Ligotti. I know Subterranean Press has been doing a limited series of hardcovers, the first two volumes I have unfortunately missed out on...but I was wondering if there was a cheaper, paperback option that anyone would recommend. Is there an essential, introductory collection of Ligotti stories, or a particularly scary novel that comes as an immediate recommendation?

Thank you in advance.

Re: Introduction to Thomas Ligotti
Posted by: Jojo Lapin X (IP Logged)
Date: 26 September, 2012 01:42PM
My recommendation is to stay away from Ligotti altogether, and read something good instead, but I realize that is not what you want to hear. Why not try, say . . . Clark Ashton Smith? Also, I do not think Ligotti has written any novels.

Re: Introduction to Thomas Ligotti
Posted by: Martinus (IP Logged)
Date: 26 September, 2012 04:24PM
The Shadow at the Bottom of the World is a pretty decent selection.

Re: Introduction to Thomas Ligotti
Posted by: The English Assassin (IP Logged)
Date: 26 September, 2012 04:50PM
I think Shadow... now goes for a pretty penny, so I imagine you'd be better off buying the latest Sub.Press hardcover than tracking down that volume, although I gather that it's very well respected. Teatro Grottesco is a collection that has been republished in a cheap edition and is still available in the UK at least, although I've not read it personally - so I can't comment. My Work Is Not Yet Done is a novella with two short stories and I liked it a lot, although a lot of Ligotti fans seem not to rank it very highly. I guess the omnibus The Nightmare Factory still represents the best value if you can find a copy at a reasonable price. You could try asking on the Ligotti forums as they'll know their onions on this topic.

Personally, I find Ligotti highly variable, although at his best he very very good indeed in my opinion - unfortunately he seems to pen far too many 'mood' pieces which are a bit samey when read on mass. My preference would be to read Conspiracy for the Human Race or to make lots of hallucinogenic drugs, sit in a dark room and listen to this...

[www.youtube.com]

...which I think is a very fine thing indeed.

Re: Introduction to Thomas Ligotti
Posted by: Tantalus (IP Logged)
Date: 27 September, 2012 03:17AM
Jojo Lapin X Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> My recommendation is to stay away from Ligotti
> altogether, and read something good instead, but I
> realize that is not what you want to hear. Why not
> try, say . . . Clark Ashton Smith?

This!

Re: Introduction to Thomas Ligotti
Posted by: wilum pugmire (IP Logged)
Date: 27 September, 2012 05:52PM
Ligotti is the finest weird fiction artist since Lovecraft; the difference between them is that Ligotti has never written any bad fiction, which cannot be said of mine beloved E'ch-Pi-El. Those earlier edition from Subterranean Press are really lovely, and it's too bad that they are now so expensive at Amazon and elsewhere. Tom's brilliant work will continue to see paperback editions, I think, and may be found in such editions for fairly decent prices. You may read much of his work and evaluations of it at Thomas Ligotti Online.

And I also encourage you to read Clark Ashton Smith, one of our finest writers and certainly one of the world's great prose-poets.

"I'm a little girl."
--H. P. Lovecraft, Esq.

Re: Introduction to Thomas Ligotti
Posted by: justlookaway (IP Logged)
Date: 27 September, 2012 09:06PM
Well...looking at Amazon and Liggoti Online it seems that my best bet is Teatro. I've only read three of his stories and while I loved each of them I want to make sure he is really my cup of tea as evidently he is not the choice of everyone here. So I'll be going with the paperback version, then maybe buying Subterranean's Noctuary if it doesn't sell out. Thanks everyone for the recommendations!

I own all six Nightshade volumes of Smith and love them dearly ("The Coming of The White Worm" is one of my top three short stories). I am waiting eagerly for the Complete Poetry...but as I am out of the States for the next few months I won't be able to get my hands on those volumes until September. I am really looking forward the the annotations of "The Hashish-Eater" and "The God of the Abyss". Until then though, maybe I can find a way to get a copy of Liggoti's Teatro outside of the states to sate my weird appetite until December.

Thanks to all, again!

Re: Introduction to Thomas Ligotti
Posted by: Siderealpress (IP Logged)
Date: 29 November, 2012 08:42AM
Hello all,
and it seems very odd for me to make my first post on an authors site not about that author.

However, I would say that I regard Ligotti as one of the greatest living writers of the genre with the usual qualifications. As others have said above, I agree that his more poetic pieces can be put aside for later but his best tales are wonderful. 'The Nightmare Factory' is a great sampler.

Sadly, he is an author with a large enough following to devour everything he writes (what little there is nowadays) at premium prices, but has yet to break out into the mainstream for everyone else to enjoy a bit cheaper. I fear he is just to weird for this to ever occur, though one can hope.

REGARDS!

John

Re: Introduction to Thomas Ligotti
Posted by: The English Assassin (IP Logged)
Date: 29 November, 2012 01:52PM
Hi John,

Welcome to the forum! I'd just like to say that I'm a big fan of Side Real and I found your recent youtube book interview fascinating - as you're here I was wondering if you have any news re the next HH.Ewers volume?

I read your review of the latest Spare offering from Fulgur and it seems like it would be a excellent starting place for someone who only has the Baker bio and wants a nice bundle of Spare's wonderful art to browse as he swills a single malt during the long winter evenings... am I right? I spoke to Baker at a talk he did a year or so ago on Spare (it was an inspiring talk and that night Spare had an uncanny ecstatic effect upon me that I can't quite describe) and he recommended tracking down the original catalogue (this was before this new edition was published) when I asked him which was the best volume of Spare's art. I was wondering if you agree? I think Spare and CAS might have got on well.

Anyway, I've been enjoying your reviews and have ordered a copy of Gesamtkunstwerk Expressionismus and a DVD of Salome on the strength of them.

Re: Introduction to Thomas Ligotti
Posted by: Siderealpress (IP Logged)
Date: 29 November, 2012 05:03PM
Hello Assassin and of course anyone else,
thanks for your kind words- I am glad my musings amuse in some ways.

With regard to Ewers (which I suppose shoule really be on the Ewers postings) I hope to announce something this weekend. I have just signed off the finished sheets from the printers but I until I have a firm delivery date dont want to commit myself any further. I will say that it looks nice.

Ah! Austin Spare. Yes I think the Fulgur book of reviews is great and gives a wonderful overview of the works from all periods. So much of his stuff is expensive to buy (or outside the pocket of the casual purchaser who wants to get a sense of him) so this book is a godsend.

I personally find Spares writings very complex, partly as Spare was a mystic but also, I believe, he didnt have it in him to express himself fully in text. But the artworks are another matter, especially the portraits and automatic drawings. I am sure there will be lots on the net.

I hadn't thought about how Spare and Smith might get on but on reflection I think you are right.

This is a million miles from ligotti - looking over this post its quite an unholy Venn diagram intersection of names!

REGARDS!

J

Re: Introduction to Thomas Ligotti
Posted by: calonlan (IP Logged)
Date: 29 November, 2012 06:21PM
justlookaway Wrote:I would add Donald Sydney Fryer's excellent translation of "Gaspard de la Nuit" -
-------------------------------------------------------
> Well...looking at Amazon and Liggoti Online it
> seems that my best bet is Teatro. I've only read
> three of his stories and while I loved each of
> them I want to make sure he is really my cup of
> tea as evidently he is not the choice of everyone
> here. So I'll be going with the paperback version,
> then maybe buying Subterranean's Noctuary if it
> doesn't sell out. Thanks everyone for the
> recommendations!
>
> I own all six Nightshade volumes of Smith and love
> them dearly ("The Coming of The White Worm" is one
> of my top three short stories). I am waiting
> eagerly for the Complete Poetry...but as I am out
> of the States for the next few months I won't be
> able to get my hands on those volumes until
> September. I am really looking forward the the
> annotations of "The Hashish-Eater" and "The God of
> the Abyss". Until then though, maybe I can find a
> way to get a copy of Liggoti's Teatro outside of
> the states to sate my weird appetite until
> December.
>
> Thanks to all, again!

Re: Introduction to Thomas Ligotti
Posted by: weorcstan (IP Logged)
Date: 29 November, 2012 11:55PM
A Kindle edition would solve that!

This is a hint to all publishers here. Collectors would still want the "collector’s editions" and regular folk (meaning the regular folk with excellent taste) would pay more for a Kindle version than they would for the average Kindle book. Why isn’t this done more?


Siderealpress Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Hello all,
> and it seems very odd for me to make my first post
> on an authors site not about that author.
>
> However, I would say that I regard Ligotti as one
> of the greatest living writers of the genre with
> the usual qualifications. As others have said
> above, I agree that his more poetic pieces can be
> put aside for later but his best tales are
> wonderful. 'The Nightmare Factory' is a great
> sampler.
>
> Sadly, he is an author with a large enough
> following to devour everything he writes (what
> little there is nowadays) at premium prices, but
> has yet to break out into the mainstream for
> everyone else to enjoy a bit cheaper. I fear he is
> just to weird for this to ever occur, though one
> can hope.
>
> REGARDS!
>
> John

Re: Introduction to Thomas Ligotti
Posted by: The English Assassin (IP Logged)
Date: 30 November, 2012 06:11AM
weorcstan Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> A Kindle edition would solve that!

Not for those of us who wouldn't touch a Kindle with a shitty stick it wouldn't... I think authors need a paperback presence. Unfortunately a lot of the small presses are wedded to hardcover only releases. In fairness this is starting to change, but slowly (kudos to Chomu, Hippocampus and to a lesser extent Tartarus for this). Don't get me wrong, I love a quality hardcover, but no one but the insatiably curious, collectors and obsessives are going to spend big money on yet another unknown author. As things stand I have to pick my authors carefully after much consideration. I doubt the CIA do a more thorough background check on new recruits than I do on a prospective small press author.

Re: Introduction to Thomas Ligotti
Posted by: Gabriel (IP Logged)
Date: 30 November, 2012 06:42PM
In fact, Subterranean Press has just released the ebook version for the long out-of-print Songs of a Dead Dreamer. There are also ebook versions of Grimscribe and Noctuary.

[subterraneanpress.com]

No doubt the best option for those without a deep pocket.

Re: Introduction to Thomas Ligotti
Posted by: The English Assassin (IP Logged)
Date: 1 December, 2012 06:57AM
Gabriel Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> In fact, Subterranean Press has just released the
> ebook version for the long out-of-print Songs of a
> Dead Dreamer. There are also ebook versions of
> Grimscribe and Noctuary.
>
> [subterraneanpress.com]
> c32ba31655c2b6c67c3ab63/
>
> No doubt the best option for those without a deep
> pocket.

Definitely a good option, but no affordable paperback edition tho... Just seems short sighted to me.

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