The Broken Hours (Hardcover)

A Novel of H. P. Lovecraft

By Jacqueline Baker

Talos, 9781940456553, 320pp.

Publication Date: April 26, 2016

Other Editions of This Title:
Paperback (4/25/2017)
MP3 CD (9/20/2016)

List Price: 24.99*
* Individual store prices may vary.

Description

In the cold spring of 1936, Arthor Crandle, down-on-his luck and desperate for work, accepts a position in Providence, Rhode Island, as a live-in secretary/assistant for an unnamed shut-in.

He arrives at the gloomy colonial-style house to discover that his strange employer is an author of disturbing, bizarre fiction. Health issues have confined him to his bedroom, where he is never to be disturbed. But the writer, who Crandle knows only as “Ech-Pi,” refuses to meet him, communicating only by letters left on a table outside his room. Soon the home reveals other unnerving peculiarities. There is an ominous presence Crandle feels on the main stairwell. Light shines out underneath the door of the writer’s room, but is invisible from the street. It becomes increasingly clear there is something not right about the house or its occupant.

Haunting visions of a young girl in a white nightgown wandering the walled-in garden behind the house motivate Crandle to investigate the circumstances of his employer’s dark family history. Meanwhile, the unsettling aura of the house pulls him into a world increasingly cut off from reality, into black depths, where an unspeakable secret lies waiting.


About the Author

Jacqueline Baker is the author of A Hard Witching and Other Stories, which won the Danuta Gleed Literary Award, the Robert Kroetsch City of Edmonton Book Prize, and the Howard O Hagan Award for Short Fiction, and was also a finalist for the Rogers Writers Trust Fiction Prize. Her first novel, "The Horseman s Graves," won wide critical acclaim and was a finalist for the Evergreen Award. Jacqueline resides in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada."


Praise For The Broken Hours: A Novel of H. P. Lovecraft

“No reader can fail to be moved by the lapidary fluency of Baker’s prose, by her loving portrayals of her troubled characters, and by the cumulative power of a narrative that can only end in horror and bitterness. It is a triumph in every way.” – S.T. Joshi in Dead Reckonings

“Baker gets under your skin with this depression-era tale of child specters, haunted houses, mad scribes, and lunatic asylums—and caps it all off with a mind-melting twist that will reorder your sense of everything that preceded it.” —Craig Davidson, author of Cataract City

“Baker writes with the conviction of a fan, adeptly evoking the shadowy melancholy of Lovecraft’s world while always keeping the narrative’s momentum moving.” —Publishers Weekly

“A powerful read, creepy to the point of terrifying and, at times, utterly heartbreaking, graced with both a compelling narrative and a deep, thoughtful substrata.” —Vancouver Sun

“Baker’s prose is absolutely magical.” —Rue Morgue

“A sleek, stylish ghost story.” —Edmonton Journal

“The most terrifying books often don’t involve monsters or bloody gore; instead, their creep factor lies in the questions, the doubts, the shadows—like those in Jacqueline Baker’s skin crawler The Broken Hours.” —Elle, a "must read"

"In exquisitely precise prose, with a pitch-perfect feel for the starkness of H.P. Lovecraft’s Rhode Island, The Broken Hours taps into our fears, challenges our beliefs and brings us back to the delicious terrors of childhood." —Esi Edugyan, author of the Giller Prize–winning novel Half-Blood Blues

“A spooky novel of the terrible nature of humankind and the things we aren’t meant to know. Baker manipulates fiction and metafiction with sure-handed grace.” —Laird Barron, author of The Beautiful Thing That Awaits Us All and X’s for Eyes

"This atmospheric literary thriller is skillfully constructed, and it offered some moments of heart-rate increase I seldom experience outside a cardio session. I was unfamiliar with Lovecraft’s personal life/family history, and that stood me in good stead here – I might have seen some things coming had I known his biography, thereby lessening the suspense, which is deliciously crafted in this disquieting Gothic novel. Baker’s characterization is strong, her prose evocative, and the ambiance she creates as creepy as a frigid draft that blows a door shut in an empty house. The pacing is superb; it neither drags nor sweeps the reader too precipitously. . . . When the novel’s final twist comes, you may feel, as did I, a desire to go back and re-read with a somewhat different perspective. I finished this novel in one sitting, and found nothing to disappoint. That’s not something I can say about many of the books I crack open." —Historical Novel Society

“No reader can fail to be moved by the lapidary fluency of Baker’s prose, by her loving portrayals of her troubled characters, and by the cumulative power of a narrative that can only end in horror and bitterness. It is a triumph in every way.” – S.T. Joshi in Dead Reckonings

“Baker gets under your skin with this depression-era tale of child specters, haunted houses, mad scribes, and lunatic asylums—and caps it all off with a mind-melting twist that will reorder your sense of everything that preceded it.” —Craig Davidson, author of Cataract City

“Baker writes with the conviction of a fan, adeptly evoking the shadowy melancholy of Lovecraft’s world while always keeping the narrative’s momentum moving.” —Publishers Weekly

“A powerful read, creepy to the point of terrifying and, at times, utterly heartbreaking, graced with both a compelling narrative and a deep, thoughtful substrata.” —Vancouver Sun

“Baker’s prose is absolutely magical.” —Rue Morgue

“A sleek, stylish ghost story.” —Edmonton Journal

“The most terrifying books often don’t involve monsters or bloody gore; instead, their creep factor lies in the questions, the doubts, the shadows—like those in Jacqueline Baker’s skin crawler The Broken Hours.” —Elle, a "must read"

"In exquisitely precise prose, with a pitch-perfect feel for the starkness of H.P. Lovecraft’s Rhode Island, The Broken Hours taps into our fears, challenges our beliefs and brings us back to the delicious terrors of childhood." —Esi Edugyan, author of the Giller Prize–winning novel Half-Blood Blues

“A spooky novel of the terrible nature of humankind and the things we aren’t meant to know. Baker manipulates fiction and metafiction with sure-handed grace.” —Laird Barron, author of The Beautiful Thing That Awaits Us All and X’s for Eyes

"This atmospheric literary thriller is skillfully constructed, and it offered some moments of heart-rate increase I seldom experience outside a cardio session. I was unfamiliar with Lovecraft’s personal life/family history, and that stood me in good stead here – I might have seen some things coming had I known his biography, thereby lessening the suspense, which is deliciously crafted in this disquieting Gothic novel. Baker’s characterization is strong, her prose evocative, and the ambiance she creates as creepy as a frigid draft that blows a door shut in an empty house. The pacing is superb; it neither drags nor sweeps the reader too precipitously. . . . When the novel’s final twist comes, you may feel, as did I, a desire to go back and re-read with a somewhat different perspective. I finished this novel in one sitting, and found nothing to disappoint. That’s not something I can say about many of the books I crack open." —Historical Novel Society