The House of Fear

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Doubleday, Page, 1916 - Railroads - 342 pages
 

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The author of this book wrote, under this name and his full name of Charles Wadsworth Camp, a number of short stories, novels and non-fiction books and articles in the teens and twenties of the last century.
This book, not entirely through Camp's efforts, marked his greatest popular success in the fiction field. The book was dramatised by the actor/playwright Thomas F. Fallon, and the play, produced under the title "The Last Warning" had a successful run on Broadway in 1922. The play was produced as a movie of that title in 1929, and filmed a second in 1934 and released under the original title.
The House of Fear was published in 1916, and is immensely superior to "Sinister Island" a second mystery published by Camp in the sames year.
The story here, as in "Sinister Island", is a mystery with strong supernatural trappings. This is a story of murder, with apparently ghostly warnings and an invisible murderer. It is a better and more worthwhile book than Sinister Island because it includes a large and varied cast of characters which the author makes believable to the reader. He also handles the building of suspense and the feeling of menace quite well.
The solution of the mystery, while in some respects well done, is a disappointment because virtually all the clues which the investigator follows to the solution are hidden from the reader. In other words, there is no opportunity for the reader to complete with the investigator in finding the solution
Despite its shortcomings, however, this is an enjoyable book and well worth devoting a couple of hours to.--rtbohan
 

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Page 27 - The end of the alley was blocked by a high board fence.
Page 120 - ... in a voice so low that he had to bend closer to catch its eager appeal. "You won't take chances here, Mr. Quaile, with such forces?
Page 122 - He experienced a boyish eagerness to prove to her as well as to himself that he was not to be startled by shadows.
Page 181 - It was good of you to let me come,

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