Read The False House by James Stoddard Online


In a world divided by those who create and others who destroy, stands the High House, a mystical dwelling filled with twisting corridors, magical books, and secret passageways. For Master Carter Anderson, the task is to protect not just the House, but the whole world from the forces of evil. Now a new foe arises, The Man in the Dark. Powered by the Anarchists, he steals thIn a world divided by those who create and others who destroy, stands the High House, a mystical dwelling filled with twisting corridors, magical books, and secret passageways. For Master Carter Anderson, the task is to protect not just the House, but the whole world from the forces of evil. Now a new foe arises, The Man in the Dark. Powered by the Anarchists, he steals the High House's magical cornerstone and lays the foundation for the False House -- unleashing a hellish reign of terror upon all who cross its threshold....

Title : The False House
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780446607018
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 416 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

The False House Reviews

  • Simon Mcleish
    2019-05-09 21:54

    Originally published on my blog here in May 2001.In many ways The False House is a worthy sequel to Stoddard's excellent debut The High House. It does fail in some ways, leaving the earlier novel as the more effective.Even though their leader, the Bobby, has been destroyed, the Society of Anarchists has just gone into hiding. They still intend to take over the House of Evenmere to re-mould it as they desire. Carter Anderson, now come into his inheritance as Master of the House, maintains his vigilance but not for some years does he connect the disappearance of his wife's foster sister with an Anarchist resurgence. This is manifested in gradual transformations of the structure and inhabitants of Evenmere, and Carter eventually learns that only by the release of Lizbeth can these changes be reversed.The major fault which mars The False House seems to be indecision as to who the central character should be. In the end, Stoddard has clearly opted for Carter, who is probably easier to base the story around as this makes it possible to portray something of the special relationship he has with the house. However, there are several points where it looks as though the original intention was to use Carter's younger brother Duskin, who as a seventeen year old had dazzled Lizbeth, then aged twelve, before her kidnapping, and who had been the central figure in her thoughts helping her through her years of captivity. His transformation from heedless young man, interested only in monster hunting, to responsible adult would also form a good basis for character development at the centre of the story, while Carter is left virtually unchanged by the adventures. So, we are given a few chapters at the beginning in which it looks as though Duskin is being set up as central character (the account of his first meeting with Lizbeth), and a few chapters at the end in which his intervention is important; while in between he is hardly even mentioned.The background of the house that mirrors the universe is as atmospheric as in the first novel, with rather more specifically Christian imagery this time. An interesting detail is that the anarchists allow Lizbeth just one book to read in the years of her captivity; they give her Wuthering Heights to teach her despair. It certainly helps to have read that novel to understand parts of this one - almost everything Lizbeth says is a quotation; if I had read it more recently, I might have recognised the context of more of the quotations and I would have got more out of this story.The False House is good, but could be better; other than the poor treatment of Duskin it is an interesting novel.

  • Suzannah
    2019-05-02 22:29

    I enjoyed this book much more than THE HIGH HOUSE. I felt that it was conceptually and thematically richer--we got a clearer look at what the anarchists actually believe, and I loved the idea of the False House (which, by the way, is a very elegant solution to the old sequel problem of how to give more of the same, only different; but is the kind of idea that can only work in a sequel--that is, once the True House is established). I did think that the book had some shortcomings in characterisation, and was occasionally unsubtle about plot developments ((view spoiler)[It was woefully obvious that Gregory was an anarchist; and equally obvious that McMurtry was a red herring. I will admit to being caught completely by surprise by Crane, however! (hide spoiler)]). I also don't quite understand the logic of the plot, in the same way I don't understand the logic of Doctor Who ("Do this thing!" "But it will destroy everything!" "For some unexplained reason I perceive that it is the only way to defeat the villain!" "...OK!" *plot genies make all the logic go away*).Nitpickings aside, I enjoyed the book. I particularly loved the moody, gothic, Wuthering-Heights-ish tone of the second half. Very atmospheric.

  • Derek
    2019-05-12 22:44

    Unfortunately the prequel was too long ago: I don't remember the nature of the conflict or many of the details, and Stoddard doesn't help by filling in any of them. I do remember the overwhelming setting, a Gormenghast gone epic: a house so trans-dimensionally grand that it has geography, not just architecture (also architecture), and cultures and countries, not just inhabitants. Secret passages and epic powers and wars within the halls and chambers, and predators evolved to camouflage as furniture.I don't remember if the prequel had such a wealth of Easter-egg references obsessively/compulsively noted in passing: guards with names of Arnold, Burroughs, Leiber, Brackett, and Merritt; Ulthar, Celephais, Ooth-Nargai; Vandarei and Khentorei; Ludvig Prinn; The Red Book of Westmarch. Undoubtedly several escaped notice.I'm itching to reread the original. This was satisfying enough in itself, but the urge is to rediscover what was revelatory originally.

  • Andrew Miller
    2019-05-13 19:40

    The Bobby has been destroyed by Carter and the Anarchist threat has been annulled for the moment… or has it? Carter Anderson, Master of Evenmere, awakes one night with the knowledge that something is wrong in the land of Innman Tor. When he arrives in the battered land, he discovers the Anarchists in the middle of an attempt to steal the Cornerstone, an object that has the power to shape Existence. Carter tries to stop them, but they escape with the stone and disappear into the High House. As Carter learns more about the stone, he meets Sarah, a young woman whom he falls in love with and marries, and also Lizbeth, a young girl, the ward of Sarah’s family. The Anarchists have nefarious intentions for Lizbeth, and proceed to kidnap her, spiriting her away to the Outer Darkness, where they intend to build a house to rival Evenmere. Years pass, and soon it becomes apparent that something is amiss beyond the confines of the High House. It soon becomes apparent that the Master of Evenmere will have to do something if he hopes to prevent the collapse of Existence. Thus is the second installment of the Evenmere series begun. For the most part it follows the style of the first book, though at times the author strays into present tense when referring to certain characters and their activities, which is not wholly bad thing; though it does add a different feel to the story in places. There are some rather interesting twists early on in the story, such as a duplicate Lamp Lighter and Gnawlings turning into humans. But these things seem in the end to have very little to do with the actual plot in the end. In particular one part does not seem to tie into the main plot at all. It does not fit with the story, almost as though the author had an idea and began writing it into the book, but later decided to discontinue that particular subplot or forgot or simply shifted the direction of the story. It does create interest and concern for the characters on the part of the reader, but because nothing really seems to come of it, it is perhaps unnecessary. The story is really quite interesting, about how a girl has the power to create things through her dreams and imagination, though it could have perhaps been executed a little better. By the time the reader reaches the end, it seems as though the nature of the story has shifted several times, as though the author could not decide on one single tone that he wanted the story to possess. That is not to say that it was a massive failure; it was still good, and well written. One character who makes a bit more of an appearance in this story is Duskin. In The High House, the half-brother of Carter is a supporting character, without too much actual impact on the overall story. But in The False House, he becomes a main character, with as much focus as Carter and Lizbeth, another element that makes the second installment of the Evenmere Series a bit different. The first book focused for the most part on Carter’s story; but the second book has Lizbeth’s character taking quite a bit of attention. In that sense, The False House is a broader story, as it has three characters whose stories are being told. There are also other perspectives given, such as Sarah (Carter’s wife), Mr. Hope (the Butler of Evenmere), and Gregory (Duskin’s cousin). This method can serve to make a story more interesting, bringing in variety with the different perspectives; but it can also weaken the relationship between the reader and the main character (in this case, Carter) by lessening the amount of time spent with them. The concept of two Houses, one that encompasses all of Existence, and the other raised in defiance of it beyond the bounds of Existence, is a good picture of human rebellion against God. The Anarchist hope is very much a humanist one, a belief that through Mankind’s own efforts Paradise can be attained; they are trying to rewrite the rules governing Existence. James Stoddard has as his antagonists people who claim beneficent goals, and yet are willing to do anything, even vile acts, to achieve their ends, much like certain ideologies present in our world. The fact that the villainous organization plaguing the good people of Evenmere in the first book are still around causing problems even after their leader (the Bobby) was killed shows that ideologies do not die easily. The Anarchist cause is not relegated to fiction; it exists in the real world, amongst the intellectual elites in the universities, amongst the politicians of the world, amongst certain religious movements, amongst the artisan community, even (perhaps especially so) amongst the common people, the so-called Middle Class. Stories like that found in The False House can help to expose the fallacies of such worldviews, and hopefully point people to the Truth, that is, that God created the Cosmos with a plan and a purpose, and no matter how unfair we may think it is, or how bad it is, He knows what He is doing. Sometimes it takes a story to remind ourselves of the futility of human effort and the sovereignty of God.

  • Mary Catelli
    2019-05-06 20:47

    The sequel to The High House. Spoilers ahead for that.Shortly after the events of that work, Carter is once again in Innman Tor, where the anarchists are still going after whatever they were after when they destroyed the Tor. Then he formally visits Count Aegis, who's now in charge there.The count's older daughter Sarah tries to collect herself, certain he will be all disapproving of how her father is running it. Her younger sister Lizbeth -- adopted by the count after her anarchist father vanished in the last book's trouble -- is more excited. And the meeting goes rather better than Sarah expected. Lizbeth gets along well with Duskin, and then Carter returns, often, and Lizbeth gets to flit about him and Sarah until finally they are having the dinner to celebrate, and Lizbeth is kidnapped by her father.The anarchists haul her away to a mysterious house without windows. She can grow only brambles in the garden. And for years, they keep her there. She tries to send messages in a bottle down a stream.Six years later, Carter and Sarah have had no children and still wonder what happened to Lizbeth. But then things start to happen. Enoch sees things that changed when he went to light lamps, and they notice it is far more regular than it had been. Duskin, returning from hunting gnawlings with his friend and cousin Gregory, goes with Carter, two architects, and a small group of guards to investigate.It involves a man who had fought for the anarchists, several secret anarchists, Lizbeth thinking that Duskin is Carter, Jorgamund suffering horribly from a fierce winter storm, an aviary where all the birds have been turned to something mechanically orderly, and much more.

  • Anna
    2019-05-20 15:36

    I do much prefer The High House by the same author, but having read that, I couldn't resist this followup. Structurally/stylistically, it seems to me that the author was pressured to create something with broader appeal. The High House reads like a fairy tale, and like the sort of book that's meant to be read aloud. It's one of my favorite books, pretty much ever, and I've read quite a lot of fiction. The False House reads more like the sort of fantasy that gets made into a movie these days, with simpler structure, broader action, etc. Despite the difference in style, I do still like this book quite a lot, and also give it 5 stars. The author is apparently working now to finish the third Evenmere title (The Winking House seems to be the working title mentioned on the author's website.)I do hope he gets the chance to publish the next one, he's a fine story teller.

  • Aria Maher
    2019-05-06 22:28

    It is extraordinarily rare for a sequel to be as good as the first book. The False House, the second book in James Stoddard's Evenmere trilogy, has accomplished this goal and, perhaps, even surpassed it. Mr. Stoddard continues to explore questions of existence, self-worth, and the battle between good and evil as the wicked Anarchists once again seek to take control of the High House. This time, they have stolen a powerful forgotten relic, along with a young orphan girl, and spirited them away to the False House, an evil parody of Evenmere, which is slowly transforming the true High House into a nightmare. Once again, James Stoddard delivers a stunningly original and adventurous high fantasy novel, truly material of which the great classics are made.

  • Helle
    2019-04-28 17:49

    Six years after the events in The High House, the anarchists are still plotting to take over the House. In The False House, Carter must do his utmost to prevent that and to save his young sister in law. I enjoyed this just as much as the prequel, although there are some subtle differences.The characters have developed over the elapsed period and they are better described here. The different rooms and features of the house continue to amaze. There are some nice plot-twists culminating in a splendid finale.

  • Amy
    2019-05-15 17:32

    Even better than "The High House." An allegory belonging on the shelf with "Till We Have Faces."

  • Jeffrey
    2019-04-24 15:42

    I received the High House, the first book by James Stoddard for free at a Worldcon. It was really good.I purchased the second book, this one myself, but I never felt the same way about it.

  • Mary
    2019-05-12 19:49

    This was a great follow up to his first book. All the elements of a great fantasy are there. For those who like Tolkien and C.S. Lewis.

  • James Lyle
    2019-04-27 21:48

    Perhaps even better than High House, the first in the series.

  • Elizabeth Brenner
    2019-05-01 22:55

    Fantastic follow-up to a great book. Loved spending more time with these characters.

  • Keith
    2019-05-20 20:40

    Sequel to "The High House"