Homer's Travels: Book: Victor Lavalle's "The Ballad Of Black Tom"

Sunday, December 02, 2018

Book: Victor Lavalle's "The Ballad Of Black Tom"

I have only read a little Lovecraft.  Horror, on the pages of a book, doesn't do much for me.  To me horror is a visual and aural experience.  I received the e-book of Victor Lavalle's "The Ballad of Black Tom" as a free gift for subscribing to the TOR.com newsletter (as was "All The Birds In The Sky" I read in October).  This book is a take on H.P. Lovecraft's world that twists the racial inequalities of the Jazz era with the horror that is Cthulhu.

The book is a short read and, like most short stories or novellas, always feel a bit incomplete to me.  I always feel the author should have taken the time to filled out their world a little bit more and built up richer character backstories.

I can't say that I dislike this book.  For what it is, a short horror novella in the Lovecraftian tradition, it is perfectly fine and I gave it four stars out of five on Goodreads because of this.  If Goodreads let me though, I would have given it three and a half.

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