"Horror can stop working as horror if the reader has a sufficiently different cultural background from the author, because what horrified the author may be mundane to the reader. Alternatively, what the author accepts as good and right may horrify the reader in ways the author never intended. This can happen over time as well as across borders.
And then there's H.P. Lovecraft, who wanders freely between cosmic horror of "man was not the first, and won't be the last being to rule the Earth, and they will return when the stars are right", the existential horror of losing your identity to undeath, body-theft, gender-change, or species-change; and the racist's abject horror that Those People live in his neighborhood, possibly even right next door!."
At which two things ran through my mind:
1. I do not get the cosmic horror of not being either the first nor last to rule the earth- supposing there's an earth left for those older beings to rule once we've done with it- nor do I get the horror involved in 'and they don't care about us!' News for thee, bunny: viruses don't either, and they're already here.
2. Many people amongst my neighbours to the south of us this year are registering abject horror that H.P. Lovecraft is living in their neighbourhood, possibly right next door to them, and so they should.
The Lost Plot, happy times somewhere else.
-- somewhere else, at least, even if not happy times
Copped from various wee free libraries, a Barbara Vine and a Jo Nesbo and a Kinsey Millhone, which should hold me for a while.