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Domain (Rats #3)

3.97  ·  Rating Details  ·  3,679 Ratings  ·  111 Reviews
The long-dreaded nuclear conflict. The city torn apart, shattered, its people destroyed or mutilated beyond hope. For just a few, survival is possible only beneath the wrecked streets - if there is time to avoid the slow-descending poisonous ashes. But below, the rats, demonic offspring of irradiated forebears, are waiting. They know that Man is weakened, become frail. Has ...more
Paperback, 421 pages
Published 1985 by New English Library (first published 1983)
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Jun 26, 2016 Andrew rated it really liked it
And so my journey through James Herberts' early works continues (all be in through the night which may in hindsight might not have been the smartest thing).

This concludes what is often seen as the Rats trilogy (as I have said before there is a short graphic novel set in the same universe - which is actually the 4th part) and of all of them this is the bleakest - I guess Mr Herbert wanted to go out on a high note.

By now however the power of the first two books had started to wane (a little) the
David Brian
3.5 stars.
Okay, so I loved James Herbert's first two excursions into a land being overrun by nightmare rodents. Herbert's The Rats, and its follow up Lair, concerns a plague of giant black rats sweeping through southern England, and they are wonderful examples of genre fiction. They were both written, and set, during the nineteen seventies and yet, other than the odd reference to wearing a 'tweed jacket' and driving a 'Ford Capri', both hold up remarkably well. Domain, which was written some ele
Randolph Carter
Mar 17, 2016 Randolph Carter rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror, fiction, owned
Rats, rats everywhere, giant mutant rats as big as dogs... If postnuclear London wasn't bad enough, for Steve Culver et. al. there are these giant mutant rats leftover from Herbert's previous two novels to deal with. And rabid dogs, and crazy people too.

Setting the story in a post apocalyptic world lets Herbert free himself from any of the kind of plausibility boundaries that held the previous two volumes in the Rat trilogy back. Herbert can just let his imagination go. In addition, Herbert's p
Nov 17, 2009 Dreadlocksmile rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First published back in 1984, James Herbert’s novel ‘Domain’ formed the third and final full length novel to his classic ‘rats’ trilogy (although a graphic novel entitled ‘The City’ was later released in 1993 which followed on with the storyline).

Incorporating a formula that should have guaranteed to produce nothing short of a classic splatterpunk novel from the godfather of the subgenre; not only was Herbert laying down the long-awaited third part to his hugely successful ‘Rats’ series, but he
Harry Kane
Oct 11, 2012 Harry Kane rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
There is a whole bunch of Brit horror authors, who are more than equal to their more famous American cousins. Ramsey Campbell is like Peter Straub on ketamine, Graham Masterton is the snappier version of ole King, Barker is…Barker, Brian Lumley is Robert Howard meets Lovecraft meet Clancy, Shaun Hutson is like a better-paced John Saul, and James Herbert… James Herbert learned to write like Dean Koontz a decade before Dean Koontz learned to write like Dean Koontz, only James Herbert’s structure o ...more
Carl Timms
Jul 16, 2012 Carl Timms rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of great post-apocalyptic stories and creature horror
Recommended to Carl by: My wife
A brilliant final part and a real twist in terms of setting. London is hit by a nuclear strike wiping out most of the characters it introduces in the first 20 or so pages. Its an audacious leap from The Rats and Lair to say the least. We then get a combination of terrific post-nuclear apocalypse story with all the usual tropes; underground government bunkers, irradiated "mutants", the military, groups of disparate survivors trying to make their way underground and into shelter. Then the rats arr ...more
Tony Talbot
I have to say DOMAIN is the only book that made me physically ill while I was dipping into it - I've never found the nerve to read it all the way through yet.

Not because of the rats (or The Rats?) but because of the nuclear war premise.

I was a teenager of the Cold War, and expected never to make it to 1990 without going up in nuclear ash. Programmes like THREADS by the BBC and my research into fallout and the effects of nuclear war still tell me the best way to go would be quickly {shudder}.

Jesse L.
May 11, 2009 Jesse L. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I used to be able to say I had never read a horror novel that made me want to stop reading because it was so dark until I read this novel. James Herbert is, quite simply, the most effective horror author to ever come down the pike and "Domain" is the grimmest arrow in his quiver. Describing the book to a friend, I told them: "Well, it starts off with World War III, and then things get worse from there." Radiation poisoning? Check. Burn victims? Check. Suicide and despair? Double check. Flesh-eat ...more
Emma Carrig
Oct 13, 2015 Emma Carrig rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved it!!! Best book of the trilogy, non stop, edge of your seat thrilling action and gore....all hope for humanity dwindling with every page turn. I LIKE!
Alexander Draganov
Weirdly, this is the book which satisfies most and least in the same time. Herbert has developed a lot as an author and has presented a chilling and believable post apocalyptic future, populated by few, but well developed characters. Because of this however, the intensity of the original novel "The Rats" is missing. "Domain" is a strong entry into the series, but would have been better as a spin-off rather than a conclusion of the series.
Julie Kellner
Jan 31, 2016 Julie Kellner rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I had forgotten how truly good this book was. It had been a number of years since I read it last but it reminded me how good James Herbert is in the horror genre. One of my favourite books
Aug 14, 2015 Ceegee rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
After two fairly similar (but enjoyable) books in the 'Rats' series, it was difficult to see where James Herbert could go with the idea next and not repeat the same formula, but he managed it, and managed it with style!

It's no spoiler to let slip here that the book is set in a post-nuclear London (the opening of the novel begins in spectacular fashion with the attack itself), and is focused around a group of survivors in the aftermath. The rats themselves hardly appear at all until a fair way in
I was really looking forward to reading a James Herbert novel but was disappointed as first. I hung in there and kept reading all the nasty stuff about rats, not just ordinary rats but giant rats, and rats with their guts hanging out, and death and destruction, gruesome rat and human body parts, decaying, noxious, virus ridden rats of putrid oceans full of stiffened black furred eerie, ugly and swelling abdomens - Yep all that good stuff: not! Somehow I ended up wanting to know what was going to ...more
Apr 09, 2015 Dan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What's worse than a nuclear strike on one of the most densely populated cities in the world? What's worse than one of the most densely populated cities in the world being terrorised by mutant man eating black rats?

How's about one of the most densely populated cities in the world being terrorised by mutant man eating giant black rats after a nuclear strike?!!

Herbert ended a great trilogy in one of the most devastating horror novels I have ever read, combining two nightmares to create one in which
Graham King
Jun 08, 2014 Graham King rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think James Herbert did well with his third 'Rats' story to avoid making it feel like simply more of the same, which Lair (while enjoyable) kind of did. The nuclear war setting added an effective new dimension to it all, with the book feeling as much about the characters' attempts to survive in the immediate aftermath of a nuclear attack as it was about great bug mutant man-eating rats - but there was plenty of that too!

I think my one criticism would be that it did feel really quite long in pl
Apr 27, 2016 RHODRI GUARD rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great read

This is the third time I have read this book (previously in paperback form) and still think it is terrific. I have been reading James Herbert books since I was a teen in the early eighties and have recently started downloading them to read again. This has to be one of my favourites, with it's depiction of nuclear war terrifying me the first time of reading when it came out (anyone who had seen Threads in the eighties would know what I mean!) Adding the threat of the mutant rats from hi
Oct 01, 2015 Sheila rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another slice of rat violence from James Herbert, this time set in a post-nuclear-strike London. The main story focuses on a group who have made it to the safety(?) of an underground bunker, and how they initially set about surviving the harsh conditions.

An attack by the giant black rats happens fairly early after the missile strike, so the group know the creatures are out there. As events unfold and the attacks become more regular, and more vicious, the survivors are forced to leave the safety

This is number 40 of 300 signed numbered copuies, signed by:

James Herbert
Jason C. Eckhardt
David Ho
Jarrod Scarbrough
When I first heard of Domain, I had very high hopes. I mean, it is part of the Rats series, AND takes place post nuclear holocaust! Several years back, I tried reading this and couldn't get into it, so gave up. I tried again (this time via audiobook), and while I wasn't super pleased, I found it at least tolerable. Sadly, it comes in as a weak finale to the Rats trilogy. I think the issue is the fact that so much time and energy was spent on the horrors of the nuclear bombs destroying London, th ...more
Keita-Eiri Uesugi
Apr 05, 2015 Keita-Eiri Uesugi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
So, I seem to make a massive mistake when it comes to James Herbert books, specifically ones to do with his "The Rats" trilogy...
Me being the stupid idiot I am, took "Domain" with me to London and read it on the train. No, not a good idea. I don't know if anyone remembers the incident of me reading "The Rats" on the way to London before but, lets just say there was a bit in the tube and then rats happened and in real life with me, the tube actually stopped in the tunnel and I genuinely freaked o
Sep 16, 2014 Sam rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thriller, horror
This is the final installment of the Rats trilogy (the others of which I haven't actually read) and finds London being destroyed in a nuclear attack, resulting in destruction, carnage and a race for any below ground structure that may offer shelter. As such those who survived the initial blasts were then terrorised by the black furred terrors that live below ground, away from the glare of the sun. As the rats find themselves in the majority and find food to be suddenly abundant they become more ...more
This is billed as the third in the Rats trilogy, but for once, the giant, flesh-eating mutants take second stage to a much more horrific event - nuclear warheads detonated over London - yes, five of them, just to make sure! The first few chapters detail the struggle to understand what is going on, the race to get underground, the wishes and frustrations of a handful of 'normal' people. But to add that sinister twist, once the survivors pour in to the underground, they are met by another group of ...more
Jul 17, 2012 Vix rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
as nuclear bombs drop on London James Herbert does his usual amazing moments of action with brief looks deep into ppls lives; so detailed you "know" them in moments.
I was unsure of some of the emotions JH was trying to evoke with the Kliptons; how selfish of them regarding their dog - actually just made me whoop when their bloody demise came!
The action never rests for a moment in this final installment of the Rats series, JH throws horror after horror at you.
Many years ago (25+) when I first re
Rick Gomes
Dec 09, 2014 Rick Gomes rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
wow, this really headed in a direction I was never expecting and made it the best book of the series, although not good enough to make me add another Herbert book to my reading list.
Equal parts battle with rats and battle for (or with) humanity it looked forward to finding out what would happen next.
I did think the end got a be lame with what was found in the lair but still, overall an enjoyable read.
Jan 28, 2014 Andres rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Monster rat movies were some of my favs as a kid. A few that stand out, Deadly Eyes (duh), Ben, Willard, Graveyard Shift. There was one Italian rat movie that was kind of crappy but had an awesome ending, The Night of the Rats. Set in a post-apocalyptic future (Nukes. In the 80's it always was.) a small band of survivors try to fend off these killer rats while hiding in a bunker. While reading Domain it felt like I was reading a vastly superior novelization of that movie and in doing so inadvert ...more
Roy Bright
Jul 08, 2014 Roy Bright rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The final in the 'Rats' saga sees James Herbert explore the effects that nuclear war would have on a popoulation already previously plagued by giant mutant, human-eating rats.
Some of the ideas on offer are a little bit 'out there' but is'nt that what makes a good horror fiction book? The ability to dream and fantasise right out of the box.
W. Nicol
Sep 24, 2015 W. Nicol rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I'm sure this was reckoned good in its day. Unfortunately, it now comes over as dreadfully dated. The dystopian aftermath of a nuclear war and the revelation that a British government might be concerned more for its own members' survival than that of its citizens is now, unfortunately, taken for granted rather than being a shock.
Post-apocalyptic fiction is one of my favourite genres.
The Rats series by James Herbert is one of my favourite series.
Put them both together and what do you get? A freaking good read, that's what!

A very satisfying ending to the Rats trilogy.
By now, you know what you're in for with one of James Herbert's books and he plays to fine form, once again delivering a chilling, could-be-happening storyline with memorable characters that you either love or loathe (and he isn't afraid of destroying them in
Debbie Lilley
Not my normal genre So it was a slow starter for me But then it picked and was scary how this could become a reality with the testing and experiments they do on Rats and the amount of nuclear weapons everyone seems to have. This book is based on a nuclear attack on the UK and the discovery of mutant rats living in the underground in London. And how a group survive and escape with the group starting off with 6 people and only 3 people making it out.....
Nov 19, 2015 Lukegallimore rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I found this third installment of the trilogy very disappointing. No spoilers but I feel Herbert pushed the premise too far. Just felt like weak, desperate and lazy story telling.
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Goodreads Librari...: Fix this cover, please 3 20 Nov 28, 2015 06:00AM  
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James Herbert was Britain's number one bestselling writer (a position he held ever since publication of his first novel) and one of the world's top writers of thriller/horror fiction.

He was one of our greatest popular novelists, whose books are sold in thirty-three other languages, including Russian and Chinese. Widely imitated and hugely influential, his 19 novels have sold more than 42 million
More about James Herbert...

Other Books in the Series

Rats (4 books)
  • The Rats (Rats, #1)
  • Lair (Rats, #2)
  • The City: Graphic novel (Rats, #4)

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