Sunday, January 23, 2011

Premature Boo Review: Brood of the Witch Queen (Sax Rohmer, 1918)

Sax Rohmer, creator of the fiendish Doctor Fu Manchu, may not be the most politically correct author in the world, but he certainly has a flair for suspense. Where the Fu Manchu books are "weird science" based, Brood of the Witch Queen is all supernatural.

This is a mixed bag of sorcery, vampirism, and Egyptian mysticism that leads our father and son duo of Dr. Richard and Robert Cairn against the diabolical and mysterious Anthony Ferarra and, perhaps, his ancient forebear; a witch of Polish/Jewish witch that placed a curse on her husband's family.

It is an interesting book, despite being nearly 100 years old. It is perhaps a bit reminiscent of Bram Stoker's Jewel of the Seven Stars, but more like the later published The Devil Rides Out by Dennis Wheatley. If you enjoyed either of these, then Brood of the Witch Queen should prove enjoyable. I'll admit to getting quite a shock when you first learn of Ferarra's true power. It is a clever and frightening bit of writing.


Tim Brannan said...

You can find it here:

Project Gutenberg

dfordoom said...

All of Rohmer's books are great fun. His Sumuru books especially - what's not to love about a glamorous female diabolical criminal mastermind with an army of gorgeous women who wants to rid the world of ugliness and violence? Even if she has to kill to do it.

I love Wheatley's books as well.

Darius Whiteplume said...

@Tim - I think the Kindle edition I have is a poorly formatted one from Guttenberg. Not as bad as some. I like to take their text-only docs and make eBooks from them, but it is a bit time consuming.

@DfD - I will have to look for those. I do like Rohmer's style. I need to check out more of Wheatley. "To the Devil, a Daughter" was not so hot, but had a kind of supernatural James Bond feel.

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