The House of a Hundred Whispers
Head of Zeus; 1st Edition (October 1, 2020)
eBook/ Trade Paperback/ 400 pp
“On a windswept moor, an old house guards its secrets…”
Alright, folks. Just when we all thought we couldn’t handle yet another supernatural/haunted house story because the use of this trope has literally been beaten into the ground time and time again (pun very much intended here). Graham Masterton, master of his craft and Horror/Suspense/Supernatural Thriller author extraordinaire somehow manages to prove us as the reader wrong with another timeless tale of that same old classic haunted house story we all know and love, but in this strikingly fresh, modern, and unique way. Master of his flavor of horrorcraft yet again and ode to the supernatural horror stories of yesteryear, this time around the ghastly mysteries abound are in the shape of an old mansion (All Hallows Hall) with a rare priest’s hide hidden within its legendary walls, but that’s not it. There’s something far more sinister and demonic lurking within the house on the eerily misty Dartmoor (and if you figure it out be sure that you don’t speak its name because it will know and it will only make things much worse for everybody involved) and the legends may or may not have all the secrets uncovered just yet, with more than just a recently found hammer used in a family murder buried within its past here at All Hallows Hall. ‘The House of a Hundred Whispers’ is a powerful retelling of the classic haunted house story with the right amount of modern flair, engaging plot twists, and whimsical dark humor for horror fans of all shapes and sizes without any exceptions in quality written almost cinematically by a true master of his craft.
“Do you know what? This crucifix isn’t a crucifix at all. It’s a handle. It’s probably attached to a lever, and when you lift it up, it must activate some arrangement of strings and pulleys and weights under the floorboards, and the dado opens up.”
“Dartmoor, with its mists, bleak winter weather and overwhelming sense of isolation, is the perfect place to build a prison. It’s not a place many would choose to live—yet the Governor of Dartmoor Prison did just that. When Herbert Russell retired, he bought All Hallow’s Hall—a rambling Tudor mansion on the edge of the moor and lived there all his life. Now he’s dead, and his estranged family are set to inherit his estate. But when the dead man’s family come to stay, the atmosphere of the moors seems to drift into every room. Floorboards creak, secret passageways echo, and wind whistles in the house’s famous priest hole. And then, on the morning the family decide to leave All Hallow’s Hall once and for all, their young son Timmy goes missing.”
“From what I’ve read, an alchemist will have mixed various elements into the plaster so that after the plaster dried the room was kept suspended in time. If you entered the room and somebody recited a particular incantation, that incantation would trigger a metaphysical reaction from the walls, and you would become trapped in the moment that it was spoken to you, forever…”
The mixture of the metaphysical, paranormal investigation, parallel dimensions, and heavy religious background found within the setting, magic, and history of the old house and its mysteriously rare ‘priest’s hide’ made this a very fun atmosphere for the entire setting of the overall story. As the Russell family reunites at the old, creepy mansion members of the family (Timmy and Martin), as well as a paranormal investigator by the name of, Ada Grey, soon wind up missing as if they just vanished into the walls without a trace. But, if you listen very closely at night it’s almost as if you can hear them whispering out to you from within the walls. We as the reader eventually come to the realization that a large hidden room used to hide religious figures from the past was built in this very home. The plot unfolds as a group of paranormal investigators begins to uncover the origin and mysteries of the room, as the cops and their extensive search and rescue team continue looking for any evidence of their missing family members or belongings to no avail. One of the things I really liked about this book was the author’s use of that same old haunted house trope, but somehow managing to just tread enough water from that same old story that we all know and love, whilst creating something new and unique and timeless. It’s like we as the reader thought we knew what was going to happen, but the author was only toying with us, throwing twists and turns at almost every turn of the page as the story unfolded before our very eyes.
“Portia turned round from the painting and said, “Just look at this picture. It’s like everything that’s been happening in this house. If you ask me, it’s all the Devil’s work.”
Dark, suspenseful, eerie, often thought-provoking and down right out of this world magical this book will keep you on the edge of your seat and lurking in the shadows at all times. Check it out!