At The Mountains of Madness: Volume II

Review by Stephen Mingo

The burning horror!

The cold is drawing in, and summer seems so far away. The time is nigh to wrap yourself in a warm blanket and indulge in the occult. You may recall our previous review of H.P Lovecraft: At The Mountains of Madness – Volume I illustrated by Francois Baranger. We even interviewed Baranger, in an article that was widely well received on our website. Well, the time has come to pour a glass of Shiraz and sit by the fire with Free League Publishing’s volume two of this bone chilling tale, complete with artwork I truly feel Howard Phillips himself would be proud of.

I’ll not bore you with reams of text, nor will I spoil the product by photographing every page. Instead, here are my thoughts written down as I flick through this much anticipated second part of the story.

Front Cover

The front cover itself is remarkable, and an exciting hint at what’s to come. I couldn’t resist a peek behind the outer sleeve and I simply love the silver text on the moody background design.

The blurb at the rear of the hardback coffee table style book reminds me just how old this classic tale is. First published in 1936, and here I am reading this in 2022. In this humble reviewer’s opinion, this has withstood the test of time and remains just as great today as it did before. Now let’s open it up and see if Baranger can continue his Call of Cthulhu success…

As I begin the story, one thing is clear to me. This isn’t a book you handle with greasy hands. This is something you look after. The artwork on every single page is worthy of being printed in canvas and hung on the wall. Paired with Lovecraft’s unique writing style and his ability to ignite one’s imagination, I am enjoying the experience reading this piece.

Exploring The ruins There is something this book does extremely well here. I’ve personally had an occasional difficulty in visualising some sections of the story. Lovecraft was an eccentric fellow and this was no more apparent than in his writing. The detailed yet stunning artwork here really brought the story to life in my mind, like watching a movie in my head. For this, I salute Baranger in his work.

I shall not ramble needlessly on into the night, instead I shall settle with this book and enjoy the true spectacle of cosmic horror and wonder presented by the Lovecraft/Baranger duo. Two artists in their own right, apart but for the passage of time. Their complete works is a joy to behold.

If I were to summarise this review simply I would say, consider adding this book to your collection. This is a coffee table book. Display it on that little shelf under your coffee table for guests and friends alike. Enjoy it once in a while on a cold evening. This is the kind of art we all need to stimulate our minds.

Find out more about the product on Free League’s Website here.

Until the next time…

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