15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
This book gave me nightmares...,
This review is from: House of Hell (Fighting Fantasy) (Paperback)When I bought the first edition of this book as a kid back in the 1980s, I didn't know what I was getting myself into. The book was titled, "House of Hades," as evidently its American publisher thought using "Hell" was too harsh. Now the title "House of Hell" has been re-instated, and that's just what you'll have to go through in order to survive the gamebook without cheating.
For young readers, the story is chilling. You play as a person whose car breaks down on an unused, desolate road. The only refuge from the storm is a crumbling old house. Nobody appears to be home at first, but soon you are welcomed inside by the master of the house - the sinister Earl of Drumer and his butler, Franklins.
The Earl is seeminly a generous host, but what he doesn't tell you is that the house is a den of evil. Innocents who accidentally enter the house are quickly captured and sacrificed in occult rituals, and many of the rooms that await discovery are inhabited by gruesome creatures and sights guaranteed to send chills up your spine.
As a kid, it blew my mind that this gamebook escaped the notice of censors (especially with its unabashed usage of satanic symbols, names and instances of devil worship) and was published with just the title changed. Many of the names used in the book are the actual names of demonic entities that serve as the lieutenants of Hell. Much of the subject matter is quite disturbing...especially the descriptions of your fate should you fail to escape from the house.
Needless to say I was addicted to playing through the book as a teenager, but I had many sleepless nights as a result of doing so. Even as an adult, it's still nearly impossible to escape from the house.
It's a sinister little adventure not for the faint of heart, and I recommend it for more mature readers. If you're up for a challenging gamebook, and enjoy a good horror story, I highly recommend it.
Even better, read this book on a dark and stormy night with a flask of brandy...and avoid white wine at all costs!
Sort: Oldest first | Newest first
Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Dec 12, 2011 7:35:39 PM PST
M. Carole says:
Thank you, thank you, thank you. I read this as a teenager, too, and wouldn't have recognized it again without your review clarifying that it was previously called the House of Hades. I attribute my lifelong love of horror to this creepy little book. And I'm pretty sure it escaped the notice of not just the censors, but my parents, too.
‹ Previous 1 Next ›