The High House is not visited by chance, and those who inhabit it do so for a very long time. Worlds and universes exist within its rooms, waiting to be explored by the book's hero and readers alike.
Stoddards setting and his characters are extremely interesting (for example the introduction of the biblical character Enoch!), and he actually uses a plot ;)
And last but not least, The High House is a homage to the authors who created the genre (Carter likes sitting by his well and reading "The Well at the End of the World"....)
If you are a fan of High Fantays, this is a novel not to miss!
Above all, Stoddard can write. His prose is skillful and never excessive. Mood and atmosphere are wonderfully maintained throughout, and Stoddard's story never flags or disappoints. I read the book in one single late-night page-turning frenzy, and it was worth every yawn the next day.
This is not a tired rehash of worn-out fantasy cliches, although Stoddard has obviously read the classics in the field and pays witty in-joke homage to MacDonald, Peake, Morrison, and others; instead it is a refreshingly unique, deceptively simple, and powerful tale. The book is a delight, and Stoddard is a name to watch for.
Carter Anderson was a young lad when he accidentally gave the master keys to Evenmere, the High House, away to the Bobby, the head of the Society of Anarchists. His father realizes that the youthful error was not the fault of his son, but really caused by him not being more diligent with his son, but now he must recover the keys. To protect Carter, he is sent away from the only home he ever had.
Fourteen years later, Carter has been summoned to finally return to his home. He has not heard from his father in years and is shocked to learn that his sire is not in residence. With the help of his half-brother, Carter begins a dangerous quest to restore the rightful lord, his beloved father, to Evenmere.
THE HIGH HOUSE is high level fantasy tale that may be the genre's novel of the year. James Stoddard in his debut novel opens an incredible new world for readers to explore. The Anderson family consists of magical, awe-inspiring characters who will arouse the interest of fans. The incredible High House with its doors leading to every corner of the universe steals the show due to its invigoratingly fresh environs. The superb story line is action-packed and filled with angst, propelling readers to want Mr. Stoddard to open more of Evenmere's doors in future novels.