For its weight class, Dagon is a strong contender. It packs good tension, a solid narrative structure, and a close lensing that allows us to get solidly behind the protagonist. No spoilers ahead, but still providing a break.
I have relatively few complaints about this short story. It is lean and muscular. He does use the word “singular” once, but for Lovecraft this is like eating only one potato chip. I admire his restraint.
I especially enjoy the ending, which finishes out the story in a way that’s completely realistic for a Lovecraft protagonist while still letting us in on his fears.
Dagon is about a thirty minute read, so it also doesn’t really have time to drag. Because of its short length, I strongly recommend it to anyone who wants a taste of Lovecraft without the hefty word count.
You can read it as part of the collection below if you like the smell of paper, or google it since it’s public domain:
The Complete Fiction of H.P. Lovecraft (Knickerbocker Classics)