House Infernal by Edward Lee

20 May

Favorite Lines: “Hot winds carried smoke and a thousand screams as the sky turned blood-red behind a black sickle moon. Beyond, the city extended into its wondrous, demented infinity. Griffins and Caco-Bats swept down out of bruise-colored clouds to tear the limbs off unsuspecting inhabitants, including children and infants.” (p. 2)

Venetia Barlow is excited. She is going to spend her summer renovating a priory house to earn credits for college. While she’s working she plans to consider her future plans of becoming a nun. She doesn’t expect the crazy voice she begins to hear. A voice that tells her it’s coming to her straight from Hell.

As the days pass Venetia learns about murders committed in the priory. Lust begins to stir inside her. And Satanic clues begin to surface. Venetia is exhausted and doesn’t quite know what to believe. Is she crazy or is hell much closer than she ever thought?

Okay, I must admit I found this book on a clearance rack and thought what the heck. It took me several days to read and I still don’t know if I liked it. It’s obviously dark and explicit. It’s dirty and disgusting, but it’s also smart. If you can get past the children being eaten alive and blood being spilled you’ll see the intelligence in creating a backwards world like Hell.

Cities named Rot-Port and Sewagetown are just as their names imply and are smartly written. The creatures inhabiting these places are equally horrid and have an extra heaping of vulgarity dished with them. There is no nice or caring that takes place. The world is a nightmare.

The book stresses the opposites that exist when comparing Earth and Hell. Earth has a white moon. Hell has a black moon. This idea is played through out the book. It is a constant theme and extremely important to understanding the book as a whole.

House Infernal is not for everyone. The demons are not the ones found in romance novels. There is no redemption to be found in them. They exist to create havoc and further the needs of Satan. The book is gritty, horrible and guaranteed to make you uncomfortable. It is not a book that I’ll re-read, but it was an interesting look at the dark side.

I’ve found reviews of Edward Lee‘s House Infernal at Horror Reader, Graeme’s Fantasy, and Buried.


8 Responses to “House Infernal by Edward Lee”

  1. Kimberly Swan May 22, 2008 at 11:19 am #

    Not the usual, but your review certainly makes it sound interesting. 🙂 The ‘favorite lines’ make me think of the movie Constantine.

  2. scooper May 22, 2008 at 8:55 pm #

    Kimberly- I know. I found out it was part of a series, but I don’t really see myself reading the rest of it.

  3. Kimberly Swan May 22, 2008 at 10:32 pm #

    Really? Did it seem like part of a series? Well at least you know that if you’re looking for something different to read you could pick up the next one. 🙂

  4. Carolyn Jean May 23, 2008 at 4:05 pm #

    This sounds really interesting. The cover is sort of lame, but good for you for digging up an unexpected and smart book like this.

  5. Carolyn Jean May 23, 2008 at 4:05 pm #

    Hey, how did that green face get with my comment? Will it happen again?

  6. Carolyn Jean May 23, 2008 at 4:06 pm #


  7. scooper May 23, 2008 at 7:54 pm #

    Kimberly- I read another review that said it was book 3 (I think.). It didn’t seem like part of a series at all. I think I’ll skip other books in the series. It was different, but I think I’m a bit squeamish for them. Hearing all the talk about breeding babies for food kinda did me in.

    Carolyn- So what do you think about the newest feature of wordpress? The faces by the names… For a minute I thought you were possessed. I was reading my emails and saw the comments. I was confused, then I giggled and with the last comment I laughed out loud. The people by me a work gave me dirty looks. *giggling*

  8. Kimberly Swan May 24, 2008 at 7:42 pm #

    Oh….ewww…that might even make me a bit reluctant to read more. lol

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