Best 1927 Adventures (3)

By: Joshua Glenn
March 7, 2017

One in a series of 10 posts identifying Josh Glenn’s favorite 1927 adventure novels. Happy 90th anniversary!


“The Color Out of Space” first appeared in this issue of AMAZING STORIES

H.P. Lovecraft’s Radium Age sci-fi adventure The Color Out of Space (1927).

The narrator of this (long) short story, considered one of Lovecraft’s best, interviews Pierce, a madman who lives in the wild hills west of Arkham, Massachusetts, regarding the origins of the area’s so-called “blasted heath.” It turns out that a meteorite had crashed in fertile farmland, years earlier, shedding globules of an impossible color. Crops began to grow large (and slightly luminous) but inedible; farm animals began to exhibit deformities; people went insane or died. Discovering that a neighbor’s wife was infected by the color out of space, Pierce put her out of her misery; but discovered that the alien creature — whose motives are unknowable — is now living in the well!

Fun fact: Lovecraft made a study of colors outside of the visible spectrum because he was determined to conjure up an alien life-form whose nature would be entirely foreign to human experience.


Let me know if I’ve missed any 1927 adventures that you particularly admire.


Adventure, Lit Lists