By Frazer Lee
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Pub. Date: Octover 16, 2015
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
Daniel Gates is hired to deliver a demonic book called the Choronzon Grimoire. When it is found, a page has been torn out of it. He is sent to North Wales to find and retrieve it. Yet he is not the only one who wants to find it and take hold of the demonic secrets told in its writing. He discovers a dark secret about the town where he is sent and why the book may be more dangerous than anyone realizes.
That is the bare bones of The Leper Window by Frazer Lee. It is a good story of demonic horror limited by its brevity of 50 plus pages. The author appears to have an expert grasp on this type of tale and understands the traditional roots surrounding its telling all the way from Machen to Campbell. I was caught in the tale immediately and enjoyed the author’s distinct yet descriptive style. The author has a good sense of atmosphere and uses the old Welsh countryside and history to good advantage. In fact, I wished he used it more since I felt there was a much longer story aching to get out. But overall I really enjoyed it. I have never heard of a leper window before this. A quick search told me that they were actual fixtures in medieval churches used for a particular purpose. The town and church in Lee’s story seems to be fictional but the way he instills these fixtures in the story in quite intriguing as is how he merges the history of the demonic book with the end of his tale. It is this type of detail that kept me engrossed in what some readers might classify as an old fashioned tale of horror.
The Leper Window is an interesting and creepy work that entertained me for an evening. One might call it mainstream and subdued in style yet it packs an eerie punch in the end. I suspect The Leper Window may be an appetizer to steer you to his longer novels. If that is the case, it is successful as I plan to check out his other books soon.