CONJURE HOUSE (DarkFuse in 2013), a novel by Gray Fry, centers around scientist Anthony Mallinson who returns to his hometown of Deepvale following the savage murder of his parents. He brings his wife and young son with him to the neighborhood where his younger brother Simon disappeared many years before after entering the abandoned lakeside house called Conjure House. It gained the name due to a 19th Century resident named Peter Suman who was said to perform dark rituals there.

Not long after arriving, Anthony’s son meets a mysterious new friend lingering around Conjure House who acts much older than he looks and says cryptic things. As strange occurrences mount, Anthony begins to suspect something unnatural is going on and decides the way to deal with the menace is to reunite a group of his childhood friends who were originally present when his brother vanished inside the house. Has the evil conjurer returned, along with the numerous children that disappeared long ago? Has The Conjurer returned to try and bring forth a vast, ancient evil to our world? These are the questions Anthony is forced to answer as he investigates the mysteries surrounding him.

Billed as a novel of cosmic horror, it invokes some nasties from Lovecraft’s Cthulhu Mythos. Cthulhu even gets specifically mentioned along the way. I enjoyed Conjure House, particularly the parts where they explored Conjure House, where Anthony learns the secret history of the place and the cosmic terror that descends on Deepvale at the climax. If you’re a fan of Lovecraftian-style horror, I think you’ll enjoy this novel.

Conjure House from Amazon:

Reviewed by Matt Cowan

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