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The Ballad Of Black Tom de Victor Lavalle
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The Ballad Of Black Tom (edição: 2016)

de Victor Lavalle (Autor)

MembrosResenhasPopularidadeAvaliação médiaMenções
9744816,093 (3.88)71
"People move to New York looking for magic and nothing will convince them it isn't there. Charles Thomas Tester hustles to put food on the table, keep the roof over his father's head, from Harlem to Flushing Meadows to Red Hook. He knows what magic a suit can cast, the invisibility a guitar case can provide, and the curse written on his skin that attracts the eye of wealthy white folks and their cops. But when he delivers an occult tome to a reclusive sorceress in the heart of Queens, Tom opens a door to a deeper realm of magic, and earns the attention of things best left sleeping. A storm that might swallow the world is building in Brooklyn. Will Black Tom live to see it break?"--Provided from Amazon.com.… (mais)
Membro:amybear
Título:The Ballad Of Black Tom
Autores:Victor Lavalle (Autor)
Informação:Tor.com (2016), 152 pages
Coleções:Sua biblioteca
Avaliação:
Etiquetas:to-read

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The Ballad of Black Tom de Victor LaValle

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Mostrando 1-5 de 48 (seguinte | mostrar todas)
Excellent Lovecraft pastiche that turns Lovecraft’s racism on its head. ( )
  Charon07 | Jul 16, 2021 |
I really loved a lot of elements about this book--LaValle's writing is 🔥🔥🔥 mainly, and I loved the sense of place and the complexity of Tom's character. I appreciate that this is LaValle's homage to that ol' jerk Lovecraft, but I'm also realizing that Lovecraft's schtick is not my thing. I was all in with the creepy Suydam and Ma Att and old houses, the constant dread, and the looming (and occasionally realized) threats of violence, but the whole philosophizing over the Sleeping King and all that noise kept breaking the tension. The very real racial tensions and tremendous historical placement was undermined by the fantastical moments. Sorry, Mr. Cthulhu.

BUT I loved everything else about this book and suspect LaValle might be a new favorite author for me. ( )
  LibroLindsay | Jun 18, 2021 |
People who move to New York always make the same mistake. They can't see the place. This is true of Manhattan, but even the outer boroughs, too, be it Flushing Meadows in Queens or Red Hook in Brooklyn. They come looking for magic, whether evil or good, and nothing will convince them it isn't here. This wasn't all bad. Some New Yorkers had learned how to make a living from this error in thinking. Charles Thomas Tester for one.

I am slogging my way through the works of one H.P. Lovecraft, and finally made it through [b:The Horror at Red Hook|2582189|The Horror at Red Hook|H.P. Lovecraft|https://images.gr-assets.com/books/1266939978s/2582189.jpg|2598040], a nasty little wreck of a story of 1920s Brooklyn meeting the elder gods. That gave me an excuse to stop and enjoy Victor LaValle's reworking of the tale from the perspective of a twenty year old black man caught up in the events, shared with the point of view of the Irish police detective from the original story.* LaValle makes a couple of switches, excising the weirdest of the plot tangents from the original, and swapping the final events of the original for something both meaner and far more terrifying. I have always struggled with the total lack of horror (beyond a pervasive sense of the gross) that I find in Lovecraft. In LaValle's hands, the cosmic horror Lovecraft was going for actually shows up.

I am struggling to review this without spoiling anything. I love that this story accepts the limitations of the original and transcends them, keeping the blame for the events that transpire untouched, but going further and making it clear that the protagonist needs no more enlightened mind to guide him in his mission of annihilation. Tester's humanity lifts the whole edifice, granting a sensible reason and drive to his quest, and making his transformation real and terrifying. The writing is beautiful and the plot is tight, with explanations hinted sufficiently that the reader can fill in gaps without breaking the narrative. All told, a really great rescuing of a story that was originally poorly told.

*I enjoyed having just read the original story, because I loved the contrast. The original is not well written or particularly enjoyable, though, and you do not need to read it to appreciate this work. ( )
  amyotheramy | May 11, 2021 |
I've been haunted by this title for months. Names I greatly respect have thoroughly recommended it as a much needed revision of Lovecraft's Horror at Red Hook, and to that point, I agree. The story is thrilling and punches hard. There were, however, several times that I felt another round or two of edits would have done wonders.

For example, after driving the point home several times that Tom was to meet Suydam in three days time, and really, he drills that point home, Chapter Four opens with, "Three days had passed, and this was the third night..." Really? It just reads as unnecessarily sloppy.

For most of the book, I felt like I was reading a two-star book, but luckily, it ramps up quickly and really brings home the conclusion. ( )
  althomas39 | Apr 20, 2021 |
A strange tale that reveals a lot about human nature. I didn't realise it was Lovecraftian when I started it. I don't think you need to know a lot about that mythos to find this an intriguing read, however. ( )
  AngelaJMaher | Dec 30, 2020 |
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À H. P. Lovecraft, avec tous mes sentiments contradictoires
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Les gens qui s'installent à New York commettent tous la même erreur.
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L'humanité n'était pas responsable de ce gâchis ; elle était ce gâchis.
— Les mers vont monter et nos villes seront englouties par les océans, dit Black Tom. L'air deviendra si chaud qu'on ne pourra plus respirer. Le monde sera refaçonné pour Lui et les Siens. Ce Blanc craignait l'indifférence; eh bien, maintenant, il va découvrir ce que c'est.
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"People move to New York looking for magic and nothing will convince them it isn't there. Charles Thomas Tester hustles to put food on the table, keep the roof over his father's head, from Harlem to Flushing Meadows to Red Hook. He knows what magic a suit can cast, the invisibility a guitar case can provide, and the curse written on his skin that attracts the eye of wealthy white folks and their cops. But when he delivers an occult tome to a reclusive sorceress in the heart of Queens, Tom opens a door to a deeper realm of magic, and earns the attention of things best left sleeping. A storm that might swallow the world is building in Brooklyn. Will Black Tom live to see it break?"--Provided from Amazon.com.

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