Several weeks ago, while checking out the Project Entertainment website’s list of podcasts, I came across Cosmic Shenanigans, hosted by Mary SanGiovanni, and quickly subscribed to it. The podcast promised to be an exploration of the cosmic horror sub-genre. Between then and now, I’ve listened to several of the archived episodes. One of those episodes dealt with a story written by SanGiovanni, titled For Emmy. She went on to explain some of the elements of the story and how it was a cosmic horror story. My interest was piqued and I stopped listening to the episode so as to avoid the spoilers which were upcoming. I then went and purchased the Kindle version from Amazon. (Slight spoilers ahead)
The tale was well worth the price. I found it to be a powerfully haunting story of loss and regret. SanGiovanni’s descriptions of the thoughts and emotions of the protagonist were powerful, and I felt sad for the main character and the choices she found herself forced to make by the end of the tale.
I have loved the stories of H.P. Lovecraft ever since I encountered his writing, and I found myself enjoying SanGiovanni’s story about equally. One difference: Unlike most of the stories I read by Lovecraft, rather than feeling a strong sense of dread and unease, I found the tale to be more of an exploration of the sadness and loss and regret felt by the protagonist. SanGiovanni delves deep into the hearts of the characters, laying them bare for our viewing. Lovecraft tended to focus more on the horror of the eldritch beings and the dimensions they come from in his tales, and while that element was present in For Emmy, the story focused much more on how the characters dealt with the other-dimensional beings and places they encountered, and what they did to try and cope with the newfound realization of the horror underlying their existence.
For Emmy was an enjoyable and powerful read. It was definitely worth the price I paid on Amazon, and reading the story left me wanting more. SanGiovanni is a great storyteller, and I look forward to reading more of her work. If you enjoy horror and dark fantasy as much as I do, you’ll enjoy this tale. Give it a shot!
Here’s a link to For Emmy on Amazon: