ABERDEEN PRESS JOURNAL
FANTASY AND GENIUS.
MOONCHILD, By Aleister Crowley. Mandrake Press : 10s 6d.
“Moonchild” is one of the most extraordinary fantastic yet attractive novels we have read. A twice-divorced “widow” falls in love with Cyril Grey, who turns out to be a magician and member of an altogether saintly order of thaumaturgists. It is desired that Grey’s child by this woman shall be fashioned by pre-natal influences that it will grow up to be a great regenerator of mankind. A hostile corps of magicians set themselves to frustrate this experiment and a battle of demonology rages round the Neapolitan villa where the honeymoon couple have their quarters. The upshot need not be disclosed, but it’s significance is rather more obscure than that of the body of the story.
The charm of “Moonchild” lies in the telling. We are constantly reminded of the moods of Anatole France and the methods of Rabelais. From extensive dissertations on magic and spiritualism we are suddenly switched into humour that is sometimes normal, sometimes sardonic. From a glimpse into the blackest mysteries of Ilecate we are transferred to a wonderful white vision of the poets. From the trivialities of peace we emerge into the horrors of the Great War. “Moonchild” is not more fantastic than a thorough going “thriller”, but it is also a satire and an allegory, full of disorder and genius.