The House on the Borderland
written by William Hope Hodgson,
adapted by Richard Corben
& Simon Revelstroke,
illustrated by Richard Corben
(DC/Vertigo, 2000)

Richard Corben and Simon Revelstroke have resurrected a gothic horror classic with The House on the Borderland.

Originally published in 1908, Borderland was written by British writer William Hope Hodgson. Hodgson might not rank with Poe or Lovecraft in the annals of 'ooky literature, but this tale has been kept too long in the dark.

I'll leave the explanations of metaphor and meaning to Alan Moore in his excellent introduction to the book. Suffice it to say, Borderland isn't just about a tall, lonely house, the brother and sister who live there, and the piggish beasts which boil from the gap between our world and another.

There are similarities between the story and atmosphere of Borderland and Poe's classic Fall of the House of Usher -- although the sister in this case doesn't get locked alive in the family vault. Mary might have been better off if she had.

The plot of Borderland isn't easy to describe, nor is its tale-within-a-tale presentation. The book seems to change slightly each time I read it. But it's worth reading if you don't mind being spooked next time you walk alone down a dark hall, or being left alone with your own dark thoughts.

This adaptation does a good job of presenting Hodgson's story; Corben's art is dark and weird and startling, and it brings Hodgson's characters -- and creatures -- to life in a way you won't easily forget.

[ by Tom Knapp ]

Buy it from