Originally Posted by Extollager
Well, these are not my own books, but they are books that I requested the university library to buy. Just got the word they were in and tore over and checked 'em out:
Joshi's 2-volume biography of Lovecraft, I Am Providence
Finn's biog of Robert E. Howard, Blood and Thunder
Peter Ackyroyd's mini-biog, Poe: A Life Cut Short
Originally Posted by dask
Have you looked these over? They worth having?
I don't know if Dale would agree, but I'd say Mark Finn's book is well worth having. He is one of those who has studied Howard for quite a long time, and writes clearly and informatively on the subject.
I'm curious about Ackroyd's piece myself. So much has been written about Poe from so many perspectives, and it varies widely from excellent scholarship to pure crap. I wouldn't expect the latter from Ackroyd, but I also don't know how well he would deal with the subject; however, I came across this review which, with one point on which I will argue, raises some serious doubts: http://www.amazon.co.uk/review/RQQBT...t#RQQBT7QPLXQT
Now, having recently spent nearly a year reading everything I could lay my hands on by Poe (not only his verse and tales, but essays, sketches, and letters), as well as writings by Profs. Quinn and Mabbott (including the latter's extremely scholarly edition of Poe's Poems and Tales and Sketches), the points he raises are of serious concern and, with that one exception, the reviewer is dead right where Poe is concerned. That one point is the "Outis" material, which caused controversy for some time concerning authorship; but the consensus -- and it is very strongly backed by some of Poe's own statements -- is that he used that Poe used this pseudonym to indulge in a peculiar type of satire to which he was inclined, one of many ways he used to forward his battles in the cause of American literature.
I would have to read Ackroyd's account to see whether the reviewer is right about that
, and I may do so at some point; but the very fact the Amazon reviewer raised these issues in the fashion he did makes it likely there is some substance to his complaints.