Friends, last month we shared a wonderful and creepy offering from HorrorBabble, a reading of William Hope Hodgson’s The Voice in the Night – which was originally published in the pages of Blue Book Magazine in 1907. Thanks to Ian Gordon’s reading of the story as well as the creeping dread of the source material, it helped me pass my time at work – the creaks and groans of the old hotel I work at lend itself quite well to listening to tales of horror and terror in the dead of night. That is especially true when the subject matter is The Hound, a rather thrilling story from H.P. Lovecraft – a tale that I learned by reading this excerpt of a personal letter, collected in Selected Letters, Vol 1, was inspired by a personal incident while walking through Flatbush Reformed Church in Brookyln:
“Around the old pile is a hoary churchyard, with internments [sic?] dating from around 1730 to the middle of the nineteenth century…. From one of the crumbling gravestones–dated 1747–I chipped a small piece to carry away. It lies before me as I write–and ought to suggest some sort of horror-story. I must place it beneath my pillow as I sleep… who can say what thing might not come out of the centuried earth to exact vengeance for his desecrated tomb? And should it come, who can say what it might not resemble?”
The Hound was originally published in the February 1924 issue of Weird Tales – as I’ve read online it was one of the original five stories he chose to submit to the magazine. It should also be noted that The Hound manages to be the first story that makes mention of that fictional tome written by Abdul Alhazred, I am referring of course to the Necronomicon. Having said that it’s been pointed out by others that Abdul Alhazred is mentioned in The Nameless City, a story that was published three years earlier in The Wolverine, an amateur press journal.
So turn down the lights if you are able and prepare to learn the fate of two men who engage in grave robbing for kicks… and incur the wrath of the supernatural entity of the Hound – courtesy of Ian Gordon and HorrorBabble. In addition this is a Special Edition from HorrorBabble – they have taken their 2017 version and included audio effects and ambient music. For what it might be worth, The Hound was actually the very first work by H.P. Lovecraft that I ever read – I was spurred on to track down stories thanks to 1985’s Re-Animator.