Mark R.'s Reviews > The Case of Charles Dexter Ward

The Case of Charles Dexter Ward by H.P. Lovecraft
Rate this book
Clear rating

's review
Oct 15, 2009

liked it
Read in October, 2009

Intriguing and extremely bizarre novella-length story about a man interested in the past, who discovers he had a distant relative who may or may not have been involved in sorcery and all kinds of unholy practices.

I've read that Lovecraft was unhappy with the way this novel turned out. In comparison to his best short stories, it is less satisfying, but is by no means a bad piece of entertainment.

At the opening, we've got a guy who escaped a mental asylum. He'd been just fine, perfectly ordinary, until his recent researches into his family history. He begins conducting experiments and secretive studies that mirror activities undertaken by a mysterious relative who lived two centuries before.

The narration occasionally gets a little cumbersome, and most of the the story is told via dialogues between observing characters. And Lovecraft includes large paragraphs of old-fashioned speak, including crazily spelled words, which, as with all of his other stories in which he does this, makes the reading somewhat difficult. This does not take up much of the text, though.

I couldn't recommend this book over some of his short story collections, but it's worth checking out, obviously, for Lovecraft fans. I'd like to see what another novel of his would look like.

Sign into Goodreads to see if any of your friends have read The Case of Charles Dexter Ward.
Sign In »

No comments have been added yet.