Non-Steampunk Review: Guy Adams' Restoration

Believe it or not, I sometimes actually read books that have nothing to do with Steampunk or the Cthulhu Mythos. I also like books by Richard Dawkins and similar scientists and I am rather fond of modern fantasy, a.k.a Urban Fantasy, in general. And the latter catergory brings me to today’s review of

Restoration by Guy Adams

The cover of Guy Adam's RestorationIn February 2010 I got myself a copy of Guy Adams’ The World House and I think it is one piece of insane genius. Among other things I had this to say:

If you enjoy strange and bizarre tales and especially if you love Neil Gaiman’s work and wonder what his tales would be like on a bad trip, get yourself a copy of The World House

So I was obviously delighted when I got my hands on part two of the story of The World House: Restoration.

After reading both parts now, I cannot help but wonder what is going on in Guy’s mind… I strongly doubt there is anything but his brain involved but if he has some form of secret I would like to know it.

Restoration picks up where The World House ended and I think it is essential you have read The World House before you read Restoration. Time travel plays a big role in the novel and a lot of events in The World House are replayed, but watched from a different angle. The storyline of Restoration interlocks with The World House on several occasions and the revelations you get from it are frightning.

The story is fast-paced, gripping and terrifying. You can feel the preassure resting on the protagonists as they struggle to keep the timeline intact and check the actions of the original prisoner of the World House whom they have accidentally unleashed upon our world.

This evil power, only referred to as the stranger is actually quite a fascinating evil. You could almost say he/it is jovial evil incarnate. He just wants to play and does not care if a world burns in the process. Guy Adams lets him play several times. So much terror in so few words… Most of the horror does not happen on the pages but in the readers mind.

The quest of the (former) inabitants of the house to make the events they remember happen is quite a ride. Sometimes it is even comical, especially when Carruthers, a Victorian explorer, has to tackle modern America. Those lighter moments are few and far between, though. The story is driven by a foreboding sense of doom and urgency. There are also some very nasty twists along the way, especially when more of the backstories of various characters from the first novel are revealed.

The House itself also changes and becomes a little like Sophie, quite chilling in itself and there is a conflict between the old house and the new, so we get a few scenes reminiscent of the first novel. It is really hard to write this review without putting any spoilers in…

To sum up: Restoration is one frightningly good book. I was enthralled by it from the first page and finished it in less than three days, a new record for me for a book this size. I actually briefly considered skipping work because I could not put it down.

10 out of 10 (not Zeppelins, it is not Steampunk after all)

And I leave you with the following before you wander elsewhere:

Let this idea explode in your mind: Somewhere out there is a semi-sentient house, reaching through space and time, collecting people. It used to be the prison of a cosmic evil. Now it is under the control of an autistic little girl.

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