The Daniel Gates Adventures (Volumes 1 & 2): Frazer Lee
Reviewed by Steve Stred
The Daniel Gates Adventures Volumes 1 and 2 package together the four released works of Frazer Lee’s Daniel Gates adventure series.
Volume 1 Features the first two tales in the series; The Lucifer Glass and The Leper Window.
Going in, I decided to not read the synopsis. I have done that lately with a few of the books offered through Kendall Reviews, and I find it reduces some of my preconceived notions about what to expect. All I saw was the tag line – “Daniel Gates is a fixer,” and the names of the stories contained. I was intrigued.
The first story, The Lucifer Glass, jumps right in to the action, and a part of me wondered if I should have read anything before hand; a prior novel or a previous tale. Thankfully, the back story is hashed out and filled in over the course of the four tales in the two volumes. The Lucifer Glass was a fun read, but I did find it clunky and disjointed in certain spots. I found some of that to be read as though there had been a prior word count or page count restriction, but can’t confirm that. One aspect I found frustrating was the idea that Daniel Gates was supposed to be a professional fixer, a guy who can get you what you need, yet time and again he appears bumbling and stumped. He reminded me of the character Archer. (For those unaware there is an animated TV series called Archer, about the world’s greatest spy, who is the main character. Archer is often clumsy and over matched, but somehow comes out on top.)
The second story, The Leper Window, really started to build on the back story of Daniel Gates and Mr. Lee begins to turn the main character around. Now Daniel Gates understands more about what forces he is working against and to what degree they will fight back. As the interwoven back story begins to really hit home and show some of the internal demons Daniel has to overcome, I was finally able to make an emotional connection with Gates and it elevated the second story and Vol 1 overall.
Overall Star Rating for Volume 1 – 3.75/5*
Volume 2 Features the two tales The Lilyth Mirror and The Lucifer Gate.
Now we are talking.
Volume 2 picks up after the ending of The Leper Window, with The Lilyth Mirror. Here we find Daniel Gates once again pulled into this paranormal underworld. All bets are off as the author fills us in on Daniel Gates, where he is from and his lineage. We really get to see some twisted story lines come together.
This story itself elevates both collections and finally fulfills the novella’s attempt to become a “Jason Bourne meets The Da Vinci Code” tale. The landscapes are detailed and described magnificently and you are easily transported to the various locations that Gate’s finds himself in.
The second story in Volume 2 and the finale is The Lucifer Gate.
This tale is a worthwhile ending to a stellar series, (if of course it is an ending! You never really know.)
Unlike a lot of series with the title “adventures” we are led down a great pathway to a solid conclusion. Daniel has come into his own, he is finally confident interacting in the world he has found himself in and the final scenes will both surprise you but also make perfect sense.
Overall Star Rating for Volume 2 – 4.75/5*
For me personally, the only down grade I found, from reading all four tales in such a short time, is that I really wish there was another 100 pages or so. There is a bit of jumping around in the last two stories, from location to location, and while that works fine in movies, it wasn’t always smooth and seamless here.
A masterful collection of paranormal adventure. The back stories and occult leanings really had my interest piqued and I will for sure be investigating the mythology that I read but also more of the author’s work.
I highly recommend this collection if you want a really fun, action packed, occult-paranormal tale.
Star Rating (out of 5): 4.25*
Together in one volume, the first two novellas in the Daniel Gates Adventures.
THE LUCIFER GLASS
“It may cost you your soul.”
Daniel Gates is a fixer. Whatever his client wants, he can get for a price. But the price of his latest assignment is a high one indeed. He is to travel to Scotland to exchange a rare demonic text, a grimoire, for a consignment of even rarer whiskey. Reading the grimoire, Gates learns of the legend of Lucifer s Glass and the unholy trinity of green-eyed demons who protect it. As he does battle with the demons, Daniel realizes too late that there is much more to his assignment than meets the eye. He is locked in a struggle to save his very soul from damnation.
THE LEPER WINDOW
“Do not gaze into its secrets.”
Daniel Gates’s last assignment involving a rare demonic book left him plagued by hideous nightmares, which are about to get even worse. When a page is stolen from Choronzon’s Grimoire, Daniel is sent to the wilds of North Wales to retrieve it for his mysterious client. But the stolen page contains dark, occult secrets, and he finds to his peril that he is not the only one desperate to find it. Daniel’s journey takes him to the very brink of madness and to the demons that await—beyond the Leper Window.
You can buy The Daniel Gates Adventures (Volume 1) from Amazon UK
Together in one volume, the third and fourth novellas in the Daniel Gates Adventures.
THE LILYTH MIRROR
“In darkness, truth lies.”
Daniel Gates’ adventure with the ancient demonic tome, Choronzon’s Grimoire, leads him back to an old friend in Turin, Italy. To be rid of the cursed book he must first face his nemesis, the sinister and scheming Baron Perdurabo. But Daniel is transported to the Beyond, and driven to the edge of his sanity, when he discovers a devastating secret behind the obsidian glass of The Lilyth Mirror.
THE LUCIFER GATE
“Speak his name, and enter.”
Reeling from the shock of his adventure with the Lilyth Mirror, Daniel Gates discovers a clue to the truth behind Choronzon’s Grimoire. Pursued by his demons, Daniel must unearth a secret buried at the dark heart of occultism. Daniel’s descent into mystery could be a step closer to redemption—or damnation—by the strange forces lurking beyond The Lucifer Gate.
You can buy The Daniel Gates Adventures (Volume 2) from Amazon UK & Amazon US
Steve Stred is an up-an-coming Dark Horror author. Steve is the author of the novel Invisible, the novellas Wagon Buddy, Yuri and Jane: the 816 Chronicles and two collections of short stories; Frostbitten: 12 Hymns of Misery and Left Hand Path: 13 More Tales of Black Magick.
Steve also has a number of works on the go and enjoys all this horror, occult, supernatural and paranormal.
Steve Stred is based in Edmonton, AB, Canada and lives with his wife, his son and their dog Oj.
You can follow Steve on Twitter @stevestred
You can visit Steve’s Official Website here
Many thanks for this marvellous and balanced review, I appreciate it!
Sounds like each story gets better. The titles and covers are wicked. I could get into these.