March 22, 2016

The Thief of Always by Clive Barker

Title:  The Thief of Always
Author:  Clive Barker
Pages:  267
Genre:  Juvenile Horror
Publisher:  Harper, 1992
Series:  Stand Alone
But Harvey knew that face better than any on earth. It was the first face he'd ever loved. It was his mother.
Synopsis: Mr. Hood's Holiday House has stood for a thousand years, welcoming countless children into its embrace. It is a place of miracles, a blissful rounds of treats and seasons, where every childhood whim may be satisfied...

There is a price to be paid, of course, but young Harvey Swick, bored with his life and beguiled by Mr. Hood's wonders, does not stop to consider the consequences. It is only when the House shows it's darker face -- when Harvey discovers the pitiful creatures that dwell in its shadows -- that he comes to doubt Mr. Hood's philanthropy.

The House and its mysterious architect are not about to release their captive without a battle, however. Mr. Hood has ambitions for his new guest, for Harvey's soul burns brighter than any soul he has encountered in a thousand years...

Review:  I almost hesitate to call this book juvenile.  But the main character, Harvey, is 10.  There are scary parts that might not be appropriate for very young readers though.  Either way, this was a good tale, with plenty of horror.  It also had a moral at the end:  Don't wish your time goes fast enough.

It just wasn't what I was expecting.  This author wrote one of my favorite odd, off-the-wall fantasy novels, Weaveworld, and I keep reading more of his works and being a little disappointed.  I guess I'm hoping to find another one as magical.  This one wasn't it.

Rating:  5.5 / 10

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