House Of Penance Comic Book Review

A horrific take on the true story of the Winchester haunted house and one woman’s mission to wash away the blood curse of the Winchester rifle from claiming her own life and soul. This is a tale of guilt, ghosts, and guns . . . of how fortune brings misfortune as a grim and determined woman oversees the construction of a house twenty-four hours a day for twenty years, with the simple motto of keep busy building or get busy dying.

I know of the Winchester Mystery House and love anything creepy, so I picked up this volume as soon as I could. At first I wasn't sure about the art style but I grew to understand and love it by the second issue. This is a wonderfully simple, wonderfully creepy tale of loss and grief that warmed even my chilly little heart (Thank you BianaDR).

The artwork itself isn't realistic and yet that's what makes it so damn creepy. Imagine that instead of rivers of blood you have snakes of red, twisting and turning, reaching for the characters. There is so much blood and ghosts haunting the pages of this and it's all masterfully created by Ian Bertram, whose work I will be looking for in the future! It's a very unique art style and may not be for everyone, but I loved it.

After reading House Of Penance you'd be forgiven for believing that this is a truly fantastical take on the Winchester Mystery House, however this book is actually pretty historically accurate. At least according to various sources, Sarah Winchester really did visit a medium who told her to build a home for the victims of the Winchester rifles and she really did sleep in various different rooms. The building itself looks fairly ridiculous and yet again, accurate - there are roughly 161 rooms, including 40 bedrooms, 2 ballrooms (one completed and one unfinished) as well as 47 fireplaces, over 10,000 panes of glass, 17 chimneys (with evidence of two others), two basements and three elevators. (Thank you Wikipedia).

This could easily be one of my picks of the year as it has everything I could want - lovely artwork, a simple but effective story, plenty of mystery and it's all wrapped up in one volume. Great work guys!

Have a few minutes? Check out this equally creepy song about Mrs Winchester:


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