Charlie Stross, The Laundry Series

I will reveiw all 3 current Laundry books in one here, as that is how I have recently read them.
Stross takes a new and very different spin on the Lovecraft Mythos in these books. He crosses Cthulu with a bit of James Bond, and a lot of Dilbert. Unusually for a Lovecraft spin-off there is little in the way of eldritch and waif like characters, needlessly purple prose, and even less ancient, dusty manuscripts.
Stross’ love of technology shines through in this series, as it does in all his science fiction, but here it is wedded with a well observed description of the tediousness of office life (emphasis here on jobs in IT, but any desk-jockeying keyboard-monkey can sympathize with the sentiments) that is juxtaposed against scenario’s that are, if not directly out of Lovecrafts mythos, definitely suffused with the sense of cosmic horror that Lovecraft is so famous for, and which is lacking in many of his successors. I particularly like Stross’ understatement. He can describe horrors in emotionally hard-hitting terms, yet keeps his cultprits half-hidden from the reader. The author undoubtedly took notes from Lovecrafts ‘Supernatural Horror in Literature’.
I look forward immensely to the advent of CASE NIGHTMARE GREEN.

Filed under SF (despite Stross’ insistence that these novels are fantasy) because I do not currently have a ‘fantasy’ or ‘horror’ category and do not wish to create them at this time for a novel such as this, and there is no way I want to create a ‘genre’ category.

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~ by Snake Oil on October 25, 2010.

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