Cool...I got a lovely HB of that last year. It is supposed to be Gene's nod to H.P. Lovecraft.I will happily take on the task of reading and giving impressions of Gene's more recent works as I also make my way through the Sun series. I just purchased An Evil Guest, which I will read after this.
Well, almost a year later, I am going to try and resurrect this thread. I just finished The Sorcerer's House. I thought it was great; a very fun, quick puzzle-book. I am on the fence when it comes to the question of whether or not the events relayed in the letters actually happened. Wolfe lays plenty of clues that tell us Bax is not a reliable person, so why should we believe he is telling the truth in his letters? Can we assume that the collator is Bax, putting the whole thing in a more skeptical light?
I think the real point in the book that holds the key is George's single letter to Bax, challenging him to a duel. How did George get this letter to Bax? At that point in the story, George is lost in the house somewhere. Did he just leave the letter somewhere? Why not just wait in that spot for Bax to come by? The thing is, this letter is the one that most justifies in the mind of potential readers that Bax is the "good" brother, and George the "bad" one. At the same time though, perhaps it just shows that George is the one prone to hot anger, and Bax the cold, calculating one. All very tricky.
What do you think, are the events in the letters true, made up by Bax to tempt George out to the house (for the purposes of killing him and taking his place), or a mixture of the two? Do you thing Bax kills George, or do you think George goes to faerie, letting Bax take his marital life?
I finished the book last summer, so I've lost much of the details. I agree with you that it was a good quick read, with a story that kept me enganged. When I read it I did so assuming that everything happening in the letters was true, though I could definitely see the possibility of the whole thing being a con by Bax to steal George's life. I guess if you just consider that most of what Bax wrote was a lie, and instead of being lost in the house, George was killed by Bax, it wouldn't take much to see it this way (obviously truncated because I don't remember everything that happened, or what the timeline was/would be). Did Bax actually inherit the house/money? If not, how does he account for this to George's wife? Is she in on it? What about his letters to his jail buddy? Corroborating the events of the other letters? I'm really not too sure, but I'll probably give it another read with all of this in mind.
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