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Brian Lumley

Brian Lumley(1937- )
Brian Lumley was born near Newcastle. In 22 years as a Military Policeman he served in many of the Cold War hotspots, including Berlin, as well as Cyprus in partition days. He reached the rank of Sergeant-Major before retiring to Devon to write full-time, and his work was first published in 1970. The vampire series, ‘Necroscope’, has been translated into ten languages and sold over a million copies worldwide.


Necroscope: An original take on the vampire story

Necroscope by Brian Lumley

Necroscope (1986) is the first in a series of 18 novels and novellas that Brian Lumley has written about Harry Keogh, a man who has the power to speak to the dead. I have previously read one of these novellas (The Mobius Murders) and wanted to read more stories about Harry. I purchased the audiobook of this first one at Audible a few years ago and have been waiting for the rest to be put on audio before starting. Fortunately, Macmillan Audio is now producing them.

In Necroscope, we meet Harry for the first time. At the beginning of the story he is just a boy, growing up as an orphan and attending a private school in England. At first he’s a poor student, bu... Read More

Necroscope II: Vamphyri!: Harry Keogh is back!

Necroscope II: Vamphyri! by Brian Lumley

Warning: This review will contain spoilers for the previous book, Necroscope.

Suggestion: Try to ignore the horrible cover art.

Necroscope II: Vamphyri! Or (Wamphyri!) is the second book in Brian Lumley’s NECROSCOPE series. These horror novels follow the life and death of Harry Keogh, the Necroscope. As the only person who can talk to the dead, he is beloved by them and, since most people who have ever lived are currently dead, he has more friends than anyone else in the world... and these friends are willing to do favors for Harry. One thing they do is teach him, so Harry has become extensively educated by geniuses who have had a... Read More

Necroscope III: The Source: Harry visits another world

Necroscope III: The Source by Brian Lumley

Warning: This review will contain spoilers for the previous books, Necroscope. And Necroscope II: Vamphyri!. You’ll want to read those books before picking up this one.

Harry Keogh is back and now he’s got a body again. How that came about is a sad tale that you need to read about in Necroscope II: Vamphyri!. You’d think that all would be well now — Harry could get back with his wife and son and maybe life could somewhat normalize, though Harry, of course, still hears from the dead and can travel through time and space on the Mobius Continuum, so maybe Harry is never going to be normal or even really desire a normal sort of life….

… but an... Read More

Necroscope: The Mobius Murders

Necroscope: The Mobius Murders by Brian Lumley

Harry Keogh is a necroscope. He speaks with the dead and considers himself to be their caretaker. The “Great Majority” love him because he keeps them connected to each other and the world they left behind. In return, Harry often benefits from their collective wisdom. One deceased person who has been particularly helpful is August Ferdinand Möbius, the mathematician whose famous work in geometry led to the discovery and naming of the Möbius strip. Since his death, Möbius has continued his interest in mathematics and astronomy and has taught Harry Keogh how to travel through time and space by using the Möbius Continuum — a timeless spaceless “place” outside of the dimensions we inhabit.

Harry thought he was the only person alive who knew how to travel the Möbius Continuum, but when one day (if you can call it a “day”) he sees someone else traveling through it, he is startled. Whe... Read More

No Sharks in the Med and Other Stories: A horror collection

No Sharks in the Med and Other Stories by Brian Lumley

Brian Lumley became a name in horror fiction in the late 1980s. He was inspired by H.P. Lovecraft, like many others, then branched out into different types of horror. He is probably best known for the NECROSCOPE series, but he has also written short fiction, and Subterranean Press has published a collection titled No Sharks in the Med and Other Stories.

Subtitled “The Best Macabre Stories of Brian Lumley,” the book contains pieces picked by the author. The stories in the book span the period from 1976 to 2005, and include two science fiction-horror stories, one that is darkly humorous and another that I think is meant to be a parody, maybe of a certain style of 1970s-vintage Hell’s Angels movie.

I would describe Lu... Read More

The Compleat Crow: Short stories of Lumley’s master occultist

The Compleat Crow by Brian Lumley

Subterranean Press has gathered a collection of Brian Lumley’s stories in The Compleat Crow. As you’d expect, nearly all these tales feature Lumley’s occult detective, Titus Crow.

Crow is the main character of a couple of novels by Lumley. He is a “white wizard,” a force for good who struggles mostly against those in league with the Cthulhu-cycle elder gods. Lumley’s style skates between Lovecraft-lite and an almost Holmesian tone. These eleven short stories were published mostly in the UK and range from 1969 to the early 1980s. Most involve Crow as the main character. Some are third-person; in some Crow is the first-person narrator, telling his own tale, and in a few he is the story-teller, relating events that have nothing to do with him. Notably, two tales use a third person narrator that is not Crow.

“Inception,” the first story in the book, follows a fugitive ... Read More

Magazine Monday: Weird Tales No. 360

The owner, publisher and editor of Weird Tales have all changed since the last issue of the magazine, and it shows. No longer innovative, with cutting edge fiction, it is now filled with pastiches of the work of H.P. Lovecraft, a throwback to the early days of the magazine. The Hugo-Award-winning team of fiction editor Ann VanderMeer and editorial and creative director Stephen H. Segal are clearly no longer choosing the fiction or art that used to brighten each issue, and the intelligent nonfiction that completed the magazine is nearly gone, though Kenneth Hite’s exploration of Lovecraft’s work, “Lost in Lovecraft,” continues; the fourteenth entry in the series is in this issue. This change is not for the better.... Read More

Magazine Monday: Subterranean Magazine, Fall 2012 and Winter 2013

Welcome news: Subterranean Magazine, a quarterly publication, has announced that it will be available for free download from here on out. The announcement was accompanied by the free editions of the Fall 2012 and the Winter 2013 issues, each of which contains a number of excellent novellas — a length for which Subterranean Press, as well as the magazine, are known. Many, including me, consider the novella to be the ideal length for science fiction, fantasy and horror: it provides the author with enough space for world building, but not more space than many stories need. The novellas in these two issues illustrate this opinion nicely.

“African Sunrise” by Nnedi Okorafor is the opening tale in ... Read More

Weird Tales: Seven Decades of Terror: Another wonderful collection from “The Unique Magazine”

Weird Tales: Seven Decades of Terror edited by John Betancourt & Robert Weinberg

This is the seventh anthology that I have reviewed that has been drawn from the pages of Weird Tales, one of the most famous pulp magazines in publishing history. Each of the previous collections had employed its own modus operandi in presenting its gathered stories. Weird Tales (1964) and Worlds of Weird (1965) had been slim paperbacks featuring previously uncollected stories. The Best of Weird Tales: 1923 (1997) had spotlighted tales solely from WT’s very first year. Weird Tales: A Selection In Facsimile (1990) was a generous hardcover offering photocopied pages from the original magazine. Weird Tales: 32 Unearthed Terror... Read More