Review: ‘Lovecraft, My Love’ by Tais Teng

    The first thing that came to mind when I read ‘Lovecraft, My Love’ by Tais Teng was the ‘Under The Radar’ topic on the Tor website. In this topic the reviewers discuss remarkable works of fiction that haven’t received the attention they deserve. And that’s exactly what happens to this book right now. It’s available as an e-book for two years now, but I don’t read much about it. That is absolutely undeserved, because the work of Tais Teng is a genre of its own.
    Lovecraft-My-LoveThe title story was enough to convince me. It is set in the Mythos realm, but with a humorous twist. We follow Howard from childhood, gradually getting entangled in his own universe. In the end he appears to be famous for books we have never heard of. This story reminded me of Neil Gaiman’s ‘Shoggoth’s Old Peculiar’, where genre indicator ‘H’ also stands for humour.
    The next story ‘Eating Your Ice-Cream Cones Twice’ is about the classical theme of undoing the past. It is told in a very empathic way and as usual full of atmosphere. Following are some SF stories. ‘Traceries In Future Sands’ shows the first signs of the exuberant imagination of Tais Teng.
    Then there is an intermezzo of four sf detective stories, which are not bad at all, but not on the same level of his later ‘Hans d’Arcy’ detective stories.
    After the detective stories it’s a feast of masterful storytelling till the end. In ‘Green-Ache’ you enter a dystopian future where a game portal possibly offers an escape from a deadly disease. ‘Crowned by Lightning’ is an alternate history story about Edmund Hillary and the Sherpa Tenzing Norgay, who hope to conquer a peak of biblical proportions where no man ever dwelled. ‘Dust and Bones’ is one of three stories that I’m aware of that describe a visit to the surface of a neutron star. Thanks to Tais Teng’s vivid imagination this story isn’t hindered by any solid physics. ‘Secrets Peter showed me’ toys with sexual undertones in Peter Pan.
    profile_picture_by_taistengIn ‘Three Snapshots of Utopia’ we read that the ‘Third Reich’ was actually a blessing for mankind when the war was over; or wasn’t it? ‘The Consistency of Water’ is a clever SF story about the strange properties of water. ‘Core-snatcher’ sheds a different light on the so-called charisma of religious cult leaders. In ‘Footprints in Nitrogen’ we follow officer Porfira Gimsell and mercenary Percy d’Arezzo y MacShimonoseki in a SF detective story set on Pluto with a Sherlock Holmes-like plot combined with solid science and sex, including emotions as well. In other words: a typical Tais Teng story.
    The best thing about this book, however, is that the three stories I didn’t mention, ‘Palimpsest’, ‘The Groove-runner’s Wife’ and ‘Perigee Love’, are available as free downloads in most e-book stores and on Smashwords. So you don’t have to judge ‘Lovecraft, My Love’ by its cover. My advice: give it a try, it won´t break the bank at $ 4.99. My best guess: you won’t be disappointed.

    Tais Teng on Smashwords.
    More Dutch writers on A Dutch Treat.


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