Objects of Worship

Twelve strange, eerie, sensual stories by a bold new voice in weird fiction. Capricious gods rule a world of women. Zombies breed human cattle. The son of a superhero must decide between his heritage and his religion. Young lovers worship a primordial spider god. The apocalyptic rebirth of the god of the elephants. Monstrous chimeras roam through a devastated future Earth. A retired fisherman caught in the middle of a conflict between gods and superheroes. Teenagers struggle to survive a surreal ice age . . .

This volume also contains interior illustrations by Rupert Bottenberg (Claude's Lost Myths collaborator) with an introduction by World Fantasy Award-winning author James Morrow and an afterword by the author.

Reviews of Objects of Worship:

Lalumière is a gifted writer, thoroughly in control of his text.
[P]otent, memorable stuff. His living dead and dead alive are quite full of soul.
New York Review of Science Fiction
Lalumière's astounding imagination has birthed entire worlds for each story, and you never know just where his journeys will end . . . If you're hungry for original genre content, Objects of Worship is just the nectar you've been praying for.
—Dave Alexander, Rue Morgue
The strange is matter-of-factly mundane . . . [I]ntensely memorable.
Claude Lalumière's Objects of Worship, should, in my opinion, get the Hugo for 2010 Best Collection.
Twelve superb and sometimes quite disturbing stories later and I have to say that ChiZine delivered another winner and Mr. Lalumiere is a name to be watched in the sff space.
[T]akes us on a journey of the weird . . . bringing forth the inner workings of characters that are rarely seen on paper, we find a highly skilled writer at work . . . a most engrossing and disturbing collection. I was deliciously disgusted and perturbed, the religious and philosophical receptors of my mind finally tickled by something more then the mass market flood.
[An] extremely enjoyable and thought-provoking first short story collection . . . I was reminded of some of the better Twilight Zone and Outer Limits offerings, with the emphasis on human interaction (even if those humans are gay zombies) rather than futuristic gadgets or the ever-popular trips through cyberspace . . . Lalumière has an assured, easy-going writing style that fits in very well with his outlandish imagination. This helps to make even the craziest notions seem as if they're the most natural thing in the world.
[T]he uninitiated reader may be caught off guard by the visceral subject matter . . . fun and disgusting.
[Objects of Worship is] freaking awesome!
Precision-crafted stories of oddball characters and their yearnings . . . The theme of power and responsibility is strongly felt throughout the collection . . . Like everyone, Lalumière's characters hunger, but hunger can take many forms here, from sex or physical comfort to justice, mystic control, or tasty brains. I wouldn't want to live in Lalumière's world, but it's an interesting place to visit.
—Charlene Brusso, Brutarian Magazine
Highly enjoyable, ranging from humorous allegories to exciting yarns, with the odd detour into strange erotica.
Lalumière¬ís trick is to make the fantastic appear mundane and then to amplify what one may consider mundane to fantastical proportions.
Objects of Worship is a short story where the reader is cast into a gloomy world of shadowy (im)morality where he or she simultaneously sympathizes with characters while being repulsed by them. It leaves the reader with a feeling of delicious depression and the pondering of the world that comes with it.
Claude Lalumière's stories are dark, mordant, precisely formed. His first collection is extraordinarily accomplished in its craft and subversive intent.
These stories are terrifically creepy. And not unlike Edgar Allan Poe or Potted Meat Product, they gave me the willies.
Throughout these pages, the mundane and the extraordinary mix and mingle with style. Whether it’s a dark magician who haunts his eyes after a zombie buys them or lovers brought together by their fascination with spiders, these tales are far more than mere spooky stories . . . .These are stories about finding connections, about defining who you are, stories of self-actualization and the promise every relationship represents. Despite the commonplace darkness, despite the horrors that may come, these tales embrace a curious and engaging spirit of optimism. These stories have soul.
Claude Lalumière has a poet's sensibility. He suggests; never overstates. This finely crafted, stylishly dark collection is a vitrine of objets and curios, a specimen cabinet of elegant bizarrerie. I recommend it to all connoisseurs of lyricism and things passing strange.
You hear about kids locked away in attics, their only toys broken clothespins, a few pipe cleaners, a spool of yarn. Yet with these toys, they manage to concoct imaginary worlds of great wonder and beauty. Claude must have grown up in an attic because he writes like one of those kids.
Claude Lalumière's extravagant imagination is matched by only two other qualities: his compassion for his characters, and his sparkling facility with language. His stories resound with the clash of ideas, the music of hearts and the howls of indignation that any sensitive creator emits when confronted with a universe less esthetically pleasing and fair-minded than the ones he daily strives to create.

eShorts

These single stories from this collection are available for individual purchase:

This Is the Ice Age by Claude Lalumière

Teenagers struggle to survive a surreal ice age that has wiped out electricity, civilization, and most of the population. From Objects of Worship, this story is part of a “potent, memorable” (New York Review of Science Fiction) speculative fiction collection by Claude Lalumière.

ChiZine Publications (CZP) curates the best of the bizarre, bringing you the most excitingly weird, subtle, dark, and disturbing literary fiction. Look for more titles in the ChiZine short stories collection to build your digital library.

$0.99

Destroyer of Worlds by Claude Lalumière

A retired fisherman with a failing marriage yearns for a more exciting life ... and finds himself caught in an apocalyptic conflict between gods and superheroes. From Objects of Worship, this story is part of a “potent, memorable” (New York Review of Science Fiction) speculative fiction collection by Claude Lalumière.

ChiZine Publications (CZP) curates the best of the bizarre, bringing you the most excitingly weird, subtle, dark, and disturbing literary fiction. Look for more titles in the ChiZine short stories collection to build your digital library.

$0.99

Roman Predator's Chimeric Odyssey by Claude Lalumière

In the aftermath the BioWar, a chosen elite undergo a sacred ritual that transforms them into werewolves who hunt giant monsters for sustenance. From Objects of Worship, this story is part of a “potent, memorable” (New York Review of Science Fiction) speculative fiction collection by Claude Lalumière.

ChiZine Publications (CZP) curates the best of the bizarre, bringing you the most excitingly weird, subtle, dark, and disturbing literary fiction. Look for more titles in the ChiZine short stories collection to build your digital library.

$0.99

A Visit to the Optometrist by Claude Lalumière

A zombie goes to the optometrist to get a new pair of eyes, but those eyes used to belong to an immortal human sorcerer who possesses his undead host in order to accomplish his evil plans. From Objects of Worship, this story is part of a “potent, memorable” (New York Review of Science Fiction) speculative fiction collection by Claude Lalumière.

ChiZine Publications (CZP) curates the best of the bizarre, bringing you the most excitingly weird, subtle, dark, and disturbing literary fiction. Look for more titles in the ChiZine short stories collection to build your digital library.

$0.99

A Place Where Nothing Ever Happens by Claude Lalumière

A young man struggling with getting his life together keeps receiving phone calls from a man claiming to be his deceased father. From Objects of Worship, this story is part of a “potent, memorable” (New York Review of Science Fiction) speculative fiction collection by Claude Lalumière.

ChiZine Publications (CZP) curates the best of the bizarre, bringing you the most excitingly weird, subtle, dark, and disturbing literary fiction. Look for more titles in the ChiZine short stories collection to build your digital library.

$0.99

Njàbò by Claude Lalumière

An artist suspects that her daughter is secretly the avatar of an ancient elephant god intent on vengeance and the destruction of human civilization. From Objects of Worship, this story is part of a “potent, memorable” (New York Review of Science Fiction) speculative fiction collection by Claude Lalumière.

ChiZine Publications (CZP) curates the best of the bizarre, bringing you the most excitingly weird, subtle, dark, and disturbing literary fiction. Look for more titles in the ChiZine short stories collection to build your digital library.

$0.99

Spiderkid by Claude Lalumière

Young lovers worship a primordial spider god ... but what must they sacrifice? From Objects of Worship, this story is part of a “potent, memorable” (New York Review of Science Fiction) speculative fiction collection by Claude Lalumière.

ChiZine Publications (CZP) curates the best of the bizarre, bringing you the most excitingly weird, subtle, dark, and disturbing literary fiction. Look for more titles in the ChiZine short stories collection to build your digital library.

$0.99

The Darkness at the Heart of the World by Claude Lalumière

An infirm boy journeys through a fantasy land, to reach the mythical dwelling of the winged warriors who protect the world against nightmares. His quest: to be granted the gift of flight! From Objects of Worship, this story is part of a “potent, memorable” (New York Review of Science Fiction) speculative fiction collection by Claude Lalumière.

ChiZine Publications (CZP) curates the best of the bizarre, bringing you the most excitingly weird, subtle, dark, and disturbing literary fiction. Look for more titles in the ChiZine short stories collection to build your digital library.

$0.99

The Sea, at Bari by Claude Lalumière

Mario returns to Bari, Italy, where, as a child, he suffered a terrifying and transformative encounter with a sea monster. From Objects of Worship, this story is part of a “potent, memorable” (New York Review of Science Fiction) speculative fiction collection by Claude Lalumière.

ChiZine Publications (CZP) curates the best of the bizarre, bringing you the most excitingly weird, subtle, dark, and disturbing literary fiction. Look for more titles in the ChiZine short stories collection to build your digital library.

$0.99

Hochelaga and Sons by Claude Lalumière

The multigenerational saga of a Montreal superhero, unwittingly created by Nazi science. From Objects of Worship, this story is part of a “potent, memorable” (New York Review of Science Fiction) speculative fiction collection by Claude Lalumière.

ChiZine Publications (CZP) curates the best of the bizarre, bringing you the most excitingly weird, subtle, dark, and disturbing literary fiction. Look for more titles in the ChiZine short stories collection to build your digital library.

$0.99

The Ethical Treatment of Meat by Claude Lalumière

Zombie suburban couple Raymond and George face an ethical crisis when one of them decides to become an animal rights activist. From Objects of Worship, this story is part of a “potent, memorable” (New York Review of Science Fiction) speculative fiction collection by Claude Lalumière.

ChiZine Publications (CZP) curates the best of the bizarre, bringing you the most excitingly weird, subtle, dark, and disturbing literary fiction. Look for more titles in the ChiZine short stories collection to build your digital library.

$0.99

The Object of Worship by Claude Lalumière

In a world of women, gods dwell in every household, controlling every aspect of reproduction and daily life. Despite the gods' physical reality, some women champion atheism. From Objects of Worship, this story is part of a “potent, memorable” (New York Review of Science Fiction) speculative fiction collection by Claude Lalumière.

ChiZine Publications (CZP) curates the best of the bizarre, bringing you the most excitingly weird, subtle, dark, and disturbing literary fiction. Look for more titles in the ChiZine short stories collection to build your digital library.

$0.99

Other Reviews

goodreads 4.03/5 stars more...

Author Info

Claude Lalumière is the editor or co-editor of twelve anthologies, including Island Dreams: Montreal Writers of the Fantastic, the Aurora Award-nominated Tesseracts Twelve: New Novellas of Canadian Fantastic Fiction, and (with Camille Alexa) Masked Mosaic: Canadian Super Stories. Claude is the co-creator, with artist Rupert Bottenberg, of Lost Myths. He has published two books through ChiZine Publications: Objects of Worship (2009) and The Door to Lost Pages (2011).

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