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The Night Boat

3.58  ·  Rating Details ·  2,170 Ratings  ·  63 Reviews
From the living hell of her watery grave she rises again...

Deep under the calm water of a Caribbean lagoon, salvage diver David Moore discovers a sunken Nazi U-boat entombed in the sand. A mysterious relic from the last war. Slowly, the U-boat rises from the depths laden with a long-dead crew, cancerous with rot, mummified for eternity.

Or so Moore thought.

Hardcover, 284 pages
Published 1988 by Kinnell (first published August 1980)
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(showing 1-30)
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Adam Light
Oct 15, 2015 Adam Light rated it really liked it
Compared to anything post "They Thirst" McCammon, this is certainly an inferior book but it should be judged on its strengths and weaknesses. Setting aside the inevitable comparisons to his later work, I rate this as a very satisfactory horror novel.
It isn't profound, but there is a WWII Uboat, nazi zombies, voodoo, and gore aplenty.
Good, fun, and action packed.
Erin ☕ *Proud Book Hoarder*
The premise and idea of this is fascinating - there were over 700 sunken German submarines, and to have one submerged in sand and released with a monstrous crew? Epic idea for a horror story set on an island. Throw in some doses of voodoo, a creepy thing underdone that I adore? Even better formula in the mixing. Unfortunately all these didn't combine well. I kept thinking when reading The Night Boat that it would have rocked as a short story or slim novella, but just wasn't packing enough punch ...more
Jon Recluse
May 13, 2013 Jon Recluse rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror, 5-star-horror
Remember when almost every horror novel and thriller had Nazis in them?
Well, this is the book they were all trying to be.
A fast, fun horror tale featuring a cursed U-boat and undead Nazis, with a dash of voodoo to give it that authentic island flavor.
Aug 21, 2011 Steve rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction, horror
This isn't a bad horror novel, but it's a pretty forgettable one, which is probably why McCammon pulled it from circulation. I think that judgement a bit too severe, given it's genre writing in the first place (lighten up McCammon). But hey, it's his call. The book actually starts out well, with McCammon effectively mixing some exotic elements (Nazis, voodoo, zombies), into some decent dread. The problem is that once the zombies (or more appropriately, flesh eating mummies) show up, the wheels s ...more
ᴥ Irena ᴥ
Aug 23, 2014 ᴥ Irena ᴥ rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: zombies, horror
A German U-boat resurfaces after forty years thanks to a salvage attempt by a man running from his past.
The book has one of the longest set ups I have ever read - almost one third of this book. That is bit too long. The prologue is perfect. It takes place during the WWII when that U-boat had sunk a freighter and was sunk in return. Only one man survived.
Forty years later David Moore accidentally releases the submarine and with it its terrible cargo.

It takes quite some time for the story to
Oct 09, 2012 Daniel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this book so much. Not only does McCammon deliver on a fun premise--undead Nazi submarine crew goes ape-shit in a sleepy Caribbean village--he complements the genre goodies with characters whose own stories invited my interest and my sympathies. McCammon even introduces the makings for some genre staples and then neatly sidesteps these cliches, offering up situations and relationships that belong to the tone and texture of the story.

The balance between plot and character depth in this
An early effort by Robert R. McCammon. The third of his novels to be published, but (according to Wikipedia) the second novel that he wrote. A promising idea - Nazi Zombies in the Caribbean. But the execution left something to be desired. Not very suspenseful and not very scary. The whole thing comes across as rather flat. It reminded me of the "horror" and "suspense" movies that were made for television in the 1970's, only with a bit more gore and sex. Start off with a little mystery, amp up to ...more
Tobin Elliott
Aug 01, 2015 Tobin Elliott rated it really liked it
Shelves: audiobook, horror, fiction
The next in my read-through of McCammon's works. This is the second novel he wrote (before Bethany's Sin, but the third published.

A reader can see the gradual improvement of McCammon's plotting as they work through his first three novels. This one took a while to get going, but once it did, it actually zipped along nicely. The second half was an absolute pleasure.

For me, McCammon's characters are almost as good as Stephen King's and Jack Ketchum's. Where he falls down (at least in these early bo
Terry Weyna
Nov 04, 2013 Terry Weyna rated it really liked it
The Night Boat was Robert R. McCammon’s third published novel, first appearing in 1980. Now Subterranean Press has brought it back as a (sold out) limited edition, and also made it available in e-book format for the first time. It betrays some of the faults of a then-new writer, but also has considerable power in its portrayal of Nazi submariners, as terrifying 35 years after the end of World War II as they were in the days when they lurked in the deep waters of the Atlantic Ocean — if not more ...more
C. Conner
Sep 06, 2013 C. Conner rated it did not like it
Not a good novel. Too much head hopping, too much back story, not a plausible plot or situation, boring characters....

40 something years after WWII an American trying to escape his traumatic past finds a German U-boat along the reef of an isolated Caribbean island. The diver dislodges a depth charge that explodes and releases the sub from the bottom. Point 1. An underwater explosion of that magnitude would have killed a scuba diver. Instead, he is taken to the surface by the rising sub. Point 2.
Adam Wilson
Aug 16, 2011 Adam Wilson rated it it was ok
McCammon's The Night Boat, published in 1980, is no doubt one of those early novels that the author decided to take out of print. I always question why any kind of

artist decides to do this but once you read, see, or hear the item in question, you can usually tell. This book is a middle-of-the-road horror novel in my opinion with

an interesting plot and Masterton-style descriptions of violence and dead, rotting bodies, but it is not up to the standard of later McCammon work like stinger, Swan

Nov 20, 2012 Scott rated it it was ok
I had to read this one because I was intrigued and it had been out of print for so long before being re-released. I even purchased it the day it the same day it started being sold again.

Not his best book... Nazi U-Boat Zombies... A little out there even for Mr McCammon. The pacing was a little slow. The scares weren't really that scary. The twist was pretty obvious. And the ending was predictable and seemed to be clipped short.

That being said, I still love Robert McCammon's books and could only
David Dalton
I enjoyed this early in his career novel by Robert McCammon. A different take on zombies. With a Caribbean flavor to it. The Night Boat is a moody, spooky tale of WW II Nazis zombies who terrorize a small island in thee Caribbean.

It took a while, but once the zombies made their first appearance then the body count rose very quickly. Pretty gruesome when it had to be. I loved the ending...Believe the hype about this thriller. Did McCammon get better as an author after this early tale? Yes he did
May 10, 2012 Aaron rated it did not like it
One of the worst and most boring novels I've ever read. McCammon is one of my favorite authors, however I've not read his earlier work. This book was really short, and that's the only way I got through it. I just didn't care at all about any of the characters and the story was pretty bland. I'll read some good stuff before I try and tackle his other notoriously bad books, "Baal" and "Bethany's Sin."
Raegan Butcher
Nov 07, 2014 Raegan Butcher rated it liked it
Fun little Nazi zombie (or as someone else pointed out, bloodsucking mummy) tale, sort of like The Fog, but with a submarine from WWII as the haunted vessel.
M.P. Johnson
May 12, 2015 M.P. Johnson rated it liked it
Not Just Any Old Zombies

Great imagery. Detailed setting. But really, the main thing is: NAZI SUBMARINE ZOMBIES!
Sean McBride
Oct 16, 2016 Sean McBride rated it it was ok
I've really liked everything I've read from McCammon, with the exception of this book. There are moments of writing brilliance in it, with some beautiful exposition, but ultimately it falls flat. The biggest problem with the book is it's inability to have any reason behind the characters. You have a character from the prologue which could have had some major impact, but just fades away. A secret background from a major character that never has a payoff, and a character introduction halfway throu ...more
Dec 31, 2016 Menion rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, horror
Rating is 3.5, but I can't quite push it to 4 stars. Still, another solid effort by McCammon, his good writing is great for the rest of the mortal authors. Loved the plot, it just did not kick quite as hard as efforts like 'Stinger.' Mr. McCammon-please stop releasing your books through small pissant publishers that only do limited hardback runs. I want 'The Border' in paperback! Death to Subterranean Press!
Nov 19, 2016 Larry rated it really liked it
Horror is not my genre, But I liked the non typical characters and setting of this book. A nice change from the cabin in the woods.
Brian Schwartz
Aug 06, 2015 Brian Schwartz rated it liked it
Shelves: horror
The Night Boat is entertaining reading with a plot that seldom lags. However, it suffers from a linear plot and lack of character development.

David Moore is developed adequately. We know his family drowned and he’s left New England and the banking system to operate a hotel in the Caribbean and forget his life. His backstory defines him and makes him a sympathetic character.

He’s the only one who gets any meaningful development.

Kip, the island constable, gets a little backstory. But he’s never mad
Jul 29, 2014 Chris rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: signed
The Night Bat refers to a Nazi U-Boat that terrorized a small island near Jamaica. It would come in, destroy freighters, land based repair yards etc all in the name of war during WWII. In the prologue, the boat has just sunk a freighter when some sub chasers sneak up on the boat and it is forced into an emergency dive, leaving two crewmen outside. The ensuing battle "sinks" the U-Boat and covers it under a shelf of sand. Of the two crewmen topside, one dies that night, the other is captured by t ...more
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Sep 07, 2014 Jeff rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: horror fans
Shelves: horror, zombies, favorites
I've watched a lot of zombie movies and read more than a few zombie-themed horror stories over the past ten years or so. Out of them all, only two really stand out.

The first was the short story A Sad Last Love at the Diner of the Damned in Book of the Dead for a particularly gross paragraph that likened castration to opening an over-stuffed Zip-Lock bag of ravioli; the second was The Night Boat, which didn't have any single passage that was a visceral as that, but collectively was every bit as
Fantasy Literature
Nov 06, 2013 Fantasy Literature rated it liked it
3.5 stars

The Night Boat was Robert R. McCammon’s third published novel, first appearing in 1980. Now Subterranean Press has brought it back as a (sold out) limited edition, and also made it available in e-book format for the first time. It betrays some of the faults of a then-new writer, but also has considerable power in its portrayal of Nazi submariners, as terrifying 35 years after the end of World War II as they were in the days when they lurked in the deep waters of the Atlantic Ocean — if
Aug 27, 2014 John rated it did not like it
This Book was Nothing but a Maelstrom

How many different ways can McCammon describe sifting of sand? I used to love to go diving but after reading 100 pages of McCammon describing every damn nuisance of diving, I'm no longer interested.

Oh God! The submarine is moving off the reefs by...itself! I'm not sure I can sleep tonight now.

I wonder if its a French, German or British sub? Oh wait, who gives a sh*t.

This book was slow moving and dull. How many books are out there that are about cursed U-boat
Dave Pope
Jun 09, 2014 Dave Pope rated it liked it
One of the early Robert McCammon novels and not nearly as powerful as his later works. I liked this read but I can't say that I loved it. Nazi Zombies, a World War 2 relic submarine, a main character that I didn't like very much. This could have been written by one of the 70's / 80's pulp horror writers and it was interesting enough in that type of vein.
Apr 17, 2012 Tashfin rated it liked it
While most readers of this book felt it was not much, I actually liked it due to its strange mixture of maritime references, submarines, World War 2, Voodoo and Zombies, which seem more realistic than the sort Romero dished out (although I still love the 'Dead's)!

Maybe not such a great read for readers who would read just about anything, but could be great for horror fans.
Aug 28, 2012 Jahrome rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Veronica Salreno
May 06, 2014 Veronica Salreno rated it really liked it
Firstly, I love Robert McCammon. This book was a little slow to start but once it got going it kept my interest. I could see he was developing his style. I would recommend this book if you are into this author and plan on reading all his material.
James McNally
Jan 11, 2014 James McNally rated it it was amazing
I read this book when it first came out and thought it was one of the scariest I've read. Now, many years later I have read it and can say it's still as scary as I remembered. McCammon is an excellent author. He is not fond of his early work but I believe it to be some of the best work I've read.
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Robert Rick McCammon was a full-time horror writer for many years. After taking a hiatus for his family, he returned to writing with an interest in historical fiction.

The sixth book in his Matthew Corbett historical fiction series, Freedom of the Mask, was published in May 2016.

The second book in the Trevor Lawson I Travel by Night series, Last Train from Perdition, will be published in October 20
More about Robert McCammon...

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