Twelve Nights at Rotter House
All the way to the end, Twelve Nights at Rotter House is a thoroughly enjoyable and decently executed haunted-house story. Via main character Felix, we get to spend thirteen (well, twelve, because…reasons) days locked up in a huge, crumbling mansion. Rotterdam House, colloquially known as “Rotter House,” is blanketed in myths and legends of death and malfeasance. Author J.W. Ocker, in fact, manages to pay lip service to an almost comically long list of ghost archetypes, from a hanged man to a murdered prostitute to a newlywed murder/suicide. And even though I’m happy to go with a “the more ghosts, the better” attitude, the fact that every. single. bedroom. in the main hallway has its own unique death/ghost associated with it feels a little too convenient. And then we come to the ending, that bete noir of all ghost stories, where the author has to reconcile standard reality and, you know, ghosts. And as with many of its predecessors, Twelve Nights at Rotter House doesn’t stick the landing. But right up until then, this is a genuinely fun and creepy read marinated in dark, spooky atmosphere. I gladly recommend it as an absorbing ghost story…but just don’t expect a satisfying resolution.
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