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New England, Old Magic
on 7 June 2012
Charles Ward is a bright young man who has dropped out of his medical studies to pursue the biography of one of his family's ancestors, the alleged wizard and alchemist Joseph Curwen. But as he delves deeper into the strange life of Curwen, Ward becomes increasingly withdrawn from his parents, spending all of his time in his rooms performing experiments. Odd sounds are heard, weird smells emanate down the stairs, and strange men appear in the middle of the night. And then Charles Dexter Ward disappears. When he is tracked down by his doctor, Marinus Willett, he appears completely changed. As if he were a different person...
Following the success of last year's "At the Mountains of Madness", Ian Culbard returns with another graphic novel retelling of a HP Lovecraft story, this time the novella "The Case of Charles Dexter Ward".
"Ward" is a story of Lovecraft's I've not read before but found Culbard's retelling of it compelling and containing plenty of the elements that makes Lovecraft such a great writer to read. From the psychiatric wards that open and close the story to the tales of ancient wizardry and necromancy, the characters and their dark activities, the abandoned old houses, and finally of course the magic, monsters and celestial horrors that go into most of Lovecraft's best work, there's plenty here for horror fans and fans of Lovecraft to enjoy.
Even though the plot twists are fairly easy to spot and you can guess where it's all headed early on, it's still good fun to read and the art is very attractive as well. For fans of literary adaptations and horror, "The Case of Charles Dexter Ward" is an excellent read.