This horror novella was a significant improvement on At The Mountains of Madness.
Charles Dexter Ward has just disappeared from a lunatic asylum after an interview with his family doctor which has left the doctor reeling from unimaginable horrors. The story is told to explain this.
Charles is researching into his family tree. He discovers an ancestor, Joseph Curwen, who was involved in strange experiments and nefarious goings on in just-pre-revolutionary Boston. We learn more about what happened then; it becomes clear that Curwen is conjuring up spirits.
As we move back to Ward, the boy's behaviour becomes stranger. There are mysterious happenings in local graveyards. There are strange noises from his attic room. At last he is moved into an asylum. The good family doctor goes to his house and discovers a secret passage; in the catacombs beneath are unnameable horrors and magic incantations. The doctor somehow escapes with his life (we never find out how) and the secret passage is mysteriously sealed up.
Ready for the final confrontation in the asylum...
A good horror yarn which actually made me close the curtains against the darkness outside.
September 2014; 159 pages
- Having reviewed over 1100 books on this blog, I have now written one myself. Motherdarling is a story about a search for a missing Will which reveals long-hidden family secrets. It is available on Kindle through Amazon. Read it and find out whether this critic can write. I live in Canterbury, England. I lived for more than thirty years in Bedford. Having retired from teaching; I became a research student at the University of Bedfordshire researching into Liminality. I achieved my PhD in 2019. I am now properly retired. I love reading! I enjoy in particular fiction (mostly great and classic fiction although I also enjoy whodunnits), biography, history and smart thinking. Follow me on twitter: @daja57