After a slow start where I considered setting the book aside, I eventually got wrapped up in the mystery and tragedy of F.G. Cottam's The House of Lost Souls. Though this wasn't a perfect book, it was an acceptable October read.
Paul Seaton is the only man who can help a trio of college students who are psychologically damaged after visiting a house where unspeakable evil lives -- because he is the only one to have defeated that evil once before. This is a story that visits the past -- the 1920s when a group of people gathered on the Isle of Wight at Fischer House for nefarious purposes under the watchful eye of real-life character Aleister Crowley. One of these people is the female photographer Pandora Gibson-Hoare. In the 1980's, Paul Seaton's girlfriend is a fashion student who wants to research Gibson-Hoare but has run out of time. Paul, as a journalist, steps in to help and precipitates an unbelievable chain of events. When Paul is approached years later to help the young women-- who are all now endangered after their trip to the Fischer house --he decides that this is a chance to help and to exorcise his own demons.
This was obviously another R.I.P. Challenge read. It was a good choice with more than enough ghosts and evil to tide one over for an entire season. Strangely, this wasn't as traumatic a book as I thought it would be. I tend to avoid plots that are strongly based in the evil that men do. While I feel rather safe from ghosts, vampires and magic, evil men exist and can be found anywhere. So I don't find a lot of entertainment in reading about murderers, sadists and other violent people. However, this book was much more about choices and consequences and this was a good balance for me. Some of the writing was a bit awkward and the book could have used more editing but it was a pretty solid horror/paranormal read.
Sticks and stones and vindictive ghosts may break my bones,
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