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House of Mystery, Volume 2: Love Stories for Dead People
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House of Mystery, Volume 2: Love Stories for Dead People (House of Mystery #2)

3.83  ·  Rating Details ·  2,312 Ratings  ·  70 Reviews
Matthew Sturges, writer of the Eisner-nominated Jack of Fables, and co-writer Bill Willingham, the creator of Fables, proudly unlock the doors to the House of Mystery, a new graphic novel series that reinvents the classic DC Comics concept. It focuses on five characters trapped in a supernatural bar, trying to solve the mystery of how and why they're imprisoned there. Each ...more
Paperback, 128 pages
Published June 9th 2009 by Vertigo
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Dec 16, 2015 Brad rated it liked it
It was okay. The best part was the attempt to leave the house and meeting the nightmare in the basement. I did't love or hate any of it because it didn't fail miserably or stand out spectacularly. There was a bit more character development and I felt some pathos for Melanie. I feel like I need to keep reading to see if this develops into something grand, but after 2 volumes, I usually expect to get blown away at least once. :)

 Danielle The Book Huntress (Back to the Books)
This volume was a mix of emotions: "wow", "that's so sad", "I don't get it", and "not so much". I do have to say that Love Stories for Dead People definitely canvasses the theme of this collection. Love is so much more than a four letter word, with infinite potential to shape our lives for the best and worst. This volume delves into that with a dark, twisted, and often gruesome collection of stories.

I loved the backstory on Ann, who was a pirate back in the day. I am all for a kickbutt, take cha
colleen the convivial curmudgeon
This series continues to be good, but this one just wasn't as good as the first.

The strength of the series lies with the vigniette stories. Some are better than others, but, overall, they are interesting threads with which we weave our tapestry.

The connecting story, however, is disjointed and confusing. I'm thinking that this is done on purpose, at this point. A way to keep us guessing, as little tidbits are handed out bit by bit. Of course since two weeks seem to have passed since the end of vo
Aug 02, 2010 Erik rated it liked it
A loyal follower of Neil Gaiman’s The Sandman series back in the 90s, but not one of Vertigo’s current long-running hit Fables (yet, at least), I picked up this latest Vertigo title by the same creators/collaborators of the latter. A bit of Gaiman can be found here – the brotherly rivals Cain and Abel, whose comic book history goes back decades – but with clearly a Willingham-style spin. Think of House of Mystery by way of Steven C. Seagle’s House of Secrets meets World’s End story-arc from Gaim ...more
William Thomas
Sep 29, 2011 William Thomas rated it liked it
Insert all of the cliched comparisons to Fables here.

Insert some of the same comparisons to Sandman here.

Insert some comparisons to the original series here.

Sturges has provided us with something not all together new, but both entertaining and literary nonetheless with this relaunch of the House of Mystery series. It contains elements of Gaiman's Sandman and the better parts of earlier Fables storylines and manages enough horror to make it something partially its own.

The largest complaint I
Nov 28, 2015 Amanda rated it really liked it
Really loving this series!
Oct 02, 2011 Aaron rated it it was ok
Well this jumped the shark in a hurry. After a solid, intriguing opening volume, Sturges throws all the buildup and character work right out the window with this insane volume. He piles on new plot developments and characters so fast, you can't keep up, and doesn't give any of them enough life for you to give a single damn about any of them. For instance, we get Fig's dad showing up out of nowhere having never been mentioned once in the previous volume, and nobody seems the least bit perplexed b ...more
May 04, 2016 Phillip rated it really liked it
This is a really nice follow up to the first volume in the House of Mystery series by Matt Sturges. Once again, the setting is within the house itself, which exists between dimensions. This allows travelers from very different worlds to visit it from time to time. The format established in the first book is carried over here as well. The primary plotline acts as a frame for stories being told by various characters, so they are woven together.

The first volume introduced the reader to the house, a
This collection combines a number of stories (penned and illustrated by several different writers and illustrators). There is Ann Preston’s origin story – she was once a pirate lass whose heart was broken by a musician she captured aboard her ship. Then there is Harry’s story of how he helped rid the House of Nightmares – assisting Abel, whose brother sent the nightmares to torment him. Miranda’s story of how she was lost in the bowels of the House when she and Ann and Harry ventured there befor ...more
This is an amazing book. I have no reservations about saying that I love it.

I was skimming the graphic novels shelf in the bookstore and this book, mis-shelved and separated from its fellow House of Mystery volumes caught my eye because of its excellent title. Honestly, the title is worth a star all on its own. Thinking it was a standalone book, I read a bit before I realized it must be part of a series, and I wasn't lost or confused at all. I was really enjoying every aspect of it, the overarch
Orrin Grey
Sep 16, 2009 Orrin Grey rated it it was ok
Shelves: comics
My review of this is pretty much identical to my review of the first volume. There's a lot of potential here, and a lot of good stuff is happening, but it never really congeals into anything solid enough for me. The art is mostly excellent (though I don't care for the new cover artist) and I really think that Luca Rossi has got a good style for this series, and the Bernie Wrightson short is very cute, but for all the inventiveness and style that's on display here, the end result just isn't for m ...more
Stewart Tame
Mar 28, 2014 Stewart Tame rated it really liked it
Sturges has taken an interesting approach to the traditional horror anthology comic. In the classic House of Mystery comics, the house was merely a convenient framing device for the various stories. As with all anthologies, the quality was spotty--some stories good and memorable, others best forgotten. With no continuing stories, it can be difficult to build a reader base--it's not as if anyone will lose track of things if they skip buying the comic for a month or two after all. After the title' ...more
I read this graphic novel while spending several hours in Borders earlier today. I couldn't find the third volume, unfortunately. :(

It's been a while since I've read the first volume that I had a bit of a fuzzy time remembering who was who, and how the first volume ended. Thankfully midway through the second volume it filled the gap. I thought the time jump I didn't know anything of was from my bad memory! It's interesting what people's choices lead them to do.

We learned a little more about som
Matt Chic
Jun 18, 2009 Matt Chic rated it really liked it
Even though I only get the trades, I think this is my favorite monthly series in comics right now. It's a great mix of weird horror, a little fantasy, and a witty sense of humor...

Rossi's art is some of the best out there today (very similar to Dustin Nguyen -- another one of my favorites) and his heavy, sharped edged shadows and linework really compliment the tone of the book. He's the main artist, but one of best parts of HoM is each issue/chapter there's another short story, each one by a dif
Aug 21, 2012 D. rated it liked it
Shelves: 2012

"Every house is haunted.
Every harsh word, every slip of the knife, every tear shed in a house- these things bleed down its walls and floors and pool in the dark recesses.
It's not just the pain, though. It's the passions as well. The ecstasies, the sweat and sounds of love and lust.
Place your forehead against the newel post and listen closely. You can hear it if you try.
If these walls could talk, they would shriek.
You, however, would not be able to distinguish the sighs of pleasure from the sig
Shawn Fritsche
Aug 14, 2010 Shawn Fritsche rated it really liked it
Another excellent chapter in the House of Mystery series. We get to know more about the protagonist Fig and her past, mainly her relationship with her father. We also get to meet the long suffering Abel, tasked with getting all of the nightmares out of the House of Mystery by his sadistic brother, Cain. The format of stories within stories continues from the first volume, and it works wonderfully, the highlight being the story of Fig in Stuffyland at the end of the volume.

I know I kind of suck
S.M.M. Lindström
Dec 28, 2013 S.M.M. Lindström rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, mystery
This is still a great, fun read! Well, I think it's mostly because it's exactly my kind of story; a lot of unexplained mysteries that actually seem that they will get an answer at some point, slowly getting to know the characters, strange twists and turns at all times without them being completely random, and lovely short stories working as pleasant and interesting intermissions for the main plot.

If those things aren't for you, this is probably not the story for you either. There's also more tha
Aug 09, 2011 Ubalstecha rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2011-reads
An excellent entry in this series. This time, we find out who Fig did not want to see at the end of volume one, her father. He has been brought to the house by the mysterious couple. Harry the bartender also has a plan to break out, but in doing so Fig stumbles across one of the people who tried to break out with Harry the last time. And let's just say that it hasn't gone well for her. We also find out more about many of the House' inhabitants through their weird, gruesome, but always interestin ...more
Jan 21, 2012 Hobbes rated it liked it
Recommended to Hobbes by: Devin Murphy
I am not actually sure how I feel about this book. The stories were interesting, but much darker than I typically like my stories. Like most serials there were many stories happening at once. I felt like there was something the reader was suppose to know, some previous knowledge about the characters that I just didn't have. I may have to find the rest of the series and see if that helps. It was very reminiscent of Sandman, in fact a few characters showed up. I might need to reread that series as ...more
Jan 10, 2013 Jaimie rated it really liked it
As much as I like the premise behind this story (and the characters in it), I found the multiple plotlines to be slightly jumbled in this volume. There was just an awful lot of unexplained sidestory (especially with the Poet and the duo-tone=hair girl) that distracted from the main storyline of the journey into the basement. I'm sure all of the details will get explained at some point in the series, but I guess that this is one of the downfalls of reading an ongoing series in a segmented way.
Nov 13, 2009 Jace rated it it was ok
Shelves: comics
After the first volume, I was excited to read this one, but it didn't really pan out as I had hoped. The overall mystery of the house is a little too meandering for me, and it doesn't have the same sense of urgency that it had in the first volume. Meanwhile, the interlude "stories" told by bar patrons were pretty weak in this book. My interest is definitely not as strong as it was coming off the first book, but as long as the library has volume 3, I'll keep reading the series.
Jun 06, 2013 Gina rated it really liked it
Shelves: adult, graphic-novel
My favorite graphic novel is the macabre, creepy graphic novel. I was turned onto this series loosely based on the old House of Mystery comic books of the past. This is the second in the series! There is one story encompassing the whole series, that of the people populating a bar in the House of Mystery, but those bar patrons need to tell stories to get drinks so there is plenty of short treasures in the pages as well. The art is great and diverse!
Emma Craven
I am glad that I continued on with the series. After the first one ended I was very confused to what was going on but still intrigued enough to pick the second one up. The story line is becoming a bit more clear to me now and I am enjoying the characters more. There are parts that are both visually and mentally creepy and my skin was crawling more than once. I am excited to see the story continue.
Second in the series.

Still pretty good straight-forward horror. Those stuck in the House of Mystery are learning a bit more about it, who controls it, and perhaps an opportunity for escape.

Didn't really love any of the self-contained stories in this one though. Cressida's back-story was OK, and same with Ann's.

Overall, a good escape.

*language, violence, sex
Dec 22, 2014 Hannah rated it it was amazing
I FINALLY got this (it's out of print - special thanks to the boyfriend for hunting down a copy for me), and I really enjoyed it. It's just as good as the first, and the whole premise I find intriguing and so much fun. I can't recommend it enough. If you've read and loved Lock and Key and Unwritten, then this is definitely a good one to pick up.
Alex Sarll
The A-story (a group of strangers from different times and places, trapped in Cain's old house) is fine in a minor, old-school Vertigo way - but the charm here is the way the format also functions as a cloaked anthology title, with odd little one-off stories that work in their own terms, drawn by artists like Kyle Baker and Bernie Wrightson who would never have been available for an ongoing.
Wilette Youkey
Jul 08, 2010 Wilette Youkey rated it liked it
Very interesting read, but there were too many one-off scenes that didn't go anywhere which only ended up confusing the story. The final little chapter was also drawn poorly (it was computer-generated and then lightened to make it look like a comic book... very bad choice!) and the story so out of place, it really made think less of the book.
Matt Sautman
Jan 12, 2016 Matt Sautman rated it really liked it
Much superior to the first installment, but not still suffering from bad art and the occasional, eh, moment, Love Stories for Dead People finds its strength as a Lovecraftian restructuring of the Beauty and the Beast story arc. I still feel that the series overall is still too simplistic, but this one is getting my hopes up!
Mar 06, 2010 Shanon rated it really liked it
Shelves: graphic-novels, 2010
This has the same Able as Preludes and Nocturnes and drawings of Cain in the back. I wonder if House of Mystery is a spin off of Sandman?

This one was great - not as good as the first one but very close.
Love Stories for Dead People lost some of the momentum contained in Room and Boredom, but it seems like a bridging story and is obviously building up to something, so it's forgiveable.

Something I never mentioned before was that I love the way the art styles change story to story, it makes an enormous difference to the feel of books. I definitely plan to stick with this series.
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Other Books in the Series

House of Mystery (8 books)
  • House of Mystery, Volume 1: Room and Boredom
  • House of Mystery, Volume 3: The Space Between
  • House of Mystery, Volume 4: The Beauty of Decay
  • House of Mystery, Volume 5: Under New Management
  • House of Mystery, Volume 6: Safe as Houses
  • House of Mystery, Volume 7: Conception
  • House of Mystery, Volume 8: Desolation

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“Lovecraft said that the oldest and strongest type of fear is the fear of the unknown. And he was an authority on such matters.

But that's not exactly it, is it?

We like the unknown. We're hunky dory with the unknown. We are, in fact, perfectly thrilled with the unknown -- as long as it remains unknown and we never have to think about it.

What we're really afraid of is that the unknown will stand up and demand to be recognized. That it won't get out of the way quickly enough and we'll step in it, all squishy and moist. We're terrified at night in the dark that the rough, slouching unknown will crawl into bed and give us a hot wet kiss on the neck.

We're not afraid of the unknown. We're afraid of the unknown becoming known.”
“Words are lies. It's what's beneath the words that has any hope of being true.” 0 likes
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