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Fluke

3.8 of 5 stars 3.80  ·  rating details  ·  2,845 ratings  ·  109 reviews
He was a stringy mongrel, wandering the streets of the city, driven by a ravenous hunger and hunting a quarry he could not define. But he was something more. Somewhere in the depths of his consciousness was a memory clawing its way to the surface, tormenting him. The memory of what he had once been—a man.
Paperback, 215 pages
Published April 1st 1999 by Pan Macmillan (first published 1977)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Talia Cohen
This book was a real departure from other James Herbert books which are known for as being horrors, written in a gruesome style. The whole story is an adventure written from the perspective of a dog. Herbert captures the world at ground level, as seen through a dog's eyes (and nose) in such a compelling fashion that I actually found myself believing that it was a first account, accurate portrayal of canine thoughts and feelings - when finishing this book, I genuinely looked at my dog in a differ ...more
Tim Mayer
James Herbert, who passed this year, was better known in the UK than the US. He started out as a horror novelist with The Rats in 1974. This was followed by another book which proved to be popular, The Fog. Herbert continued to produce novels on many different topics and genres until his recent death. Stephen King thought highly of him and there is a good podcast which covers his work, which you can listen to here.

Fluke was his third novel and was first published in 1977. Herbet was trying to ge
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Nourhan
One of the most amazing, inspiring & breathtaking books. It made me cry sometimes. It had risen my sympathy toward that poor dog.It talks about a dog who thinks that he was a man or a human being someday.Until one day he met a pretty young girl whom he recognized as his own daughter.He kept on barking at her trying to tell her that he's his father but she couldnt understand.She showed her sympathy and felt an attraction toward that poor dog.Then he met her mom which he recognized as his wife ...more
Emma Webb
I thought this story was absolutely wonderful. I only read it because my fiance recommended it to me, thinking I'd enjoy it. He was right! From the off, Herbert had me hooked. It's quite a compelling story and as it's not that long, it's really easy to read.

I'm not usually a big fan of stream-of-consciousness writing, and though this is only very loosely SOC, Herbet weaves the story together so well that I didn't really notice.

This is the first Herbert story I read, I'm pretty sure 'The Rats' i
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Laura
Oct 18, 2008 Laura rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Laura by: My Dad
I hadn't considered reading Fluke before seeing the slightly soppy movie adaptation of it, when I was about 9 or 10, being as the front cover resembled those of the many other James Herbert books my parents owned- all of which, I believed to be quite scary. With a scary black dog, with a man-shaped shadow, I was certain it was a scary book, but it turns out, that despite its supernatural themes, Fluke is actually quite different from other James Herbert novels. No mention of sex, and no real hor ...more
Adam Wilson
Fluke was quite a surprise to me. I would have never expected the author of The Fog and the Rats trilogy to write something like this. It isn’t horror at all. Instead, it is a beautiful story about the adventures of a dog told in first-person by that dog who was once a man. Through out the novel, Fluke remembers bits and pieces of his former life as a human and this is what drives the story in a vague direction. For the most part, however, this novel doesn’t have a specific purpose other than to ...more
Nik Morton
This fourth novel was a brave departure for James Herbert at the time, as he was making a name as a 'horror writer'. But this is a fantasy in which he seamlessly steps into the paws of Fluke, the puppy that grows into a dog... and wonders about the flashes of memory where he was sure he was actually a man. 'I called out to the men, but the sound wa just a dog's howl. I tried to think of my previous life, but when I concentrated, the mental pictures slid away. How had I become a dog?'

It's a super
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Clare
This is the story of a dog named Fluke who, since being a very young pup, believes he was once a man. We follow his story - which is told in the first person (or rather dog) - from being in a litter of pups, through his boisterous time of adolescence whilst living on the streets, to becoming an adult and his quest to find out the truth about his past. To say I was hooked by the reading the first page is an understatement - I read the first page twice to appreciate the utterly captivating writing ...more
Slytheringirl
This strangely enough was recommended to my by the Hypnobobs podcast back in March as a starting point for reading the late Mr. Herbert's works.

One of the best animal stories I've read, and I've read plenty! No wonder he got the OBE. Mr. Herbert masterfully described the struggle between Fluke's instincts and his lingering humanity as well as an animal's view of the world and the strange two-legged creatures that inhabit it. I would put this book right up there with Watership Down, The Plague Do
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Christine Upton
I have loved this book since childhood and everytime I pick it up I am compelled to read it again. To the point I did take to hiding it in my chest of drawers to avoid seeing it regularly! James Herbert is an incredible author with a real knack for storytelling in the first person. He manages to convey a depth of emotion I rarely find in a book. Don't get me wrong, I connect very easily on an emotional level (hence the many tears that often flow), but Fluke gets to me in a totally different way. ...more
James Burton
I have read this book many times and own my original copy from 1983. I have always admired this book, I love the way that you sit back and see life through the eyes of the dog, the colors, the ghosts and many other smells and intuition..This book made me laugh and cry and still does today. Its an easy read and I always find that if I have another chance, maybe a dog would not be a bad place to start. This is a great read for everyone, oh and if you think its like the movie, its not, this is 100 ...more
Bill Mclean
While very different to what I expected after reading other novels by James Herbert, I found this to be a very unique and intriguing writing style. The story is well put together, and while I thought in the first few chapters I may not find this story through the eyes of a dog too interesting, the ensuing 3 chapters hooked me in. I could not put this book down until it's unexpected ending.
Ashley James
My second James Herbert Novel after The Dark, which was just ok. This however was much better, very unique and well thought out. The book flies by and has a decent ending. Only downside is maybe the length, only about 250 pages. However this could be a blessing in disguise as like I said this book really does fly by. Well worth reading one of my favourite books.
Jessica
Very interesting idea, telling about a man coming to accept that he was reincarnated into a dog's body. Great job of describing a dog's point of view.
Ronnie,
I read this book Fluke in the 80s and adored it, a must for anybody who owns a Dog, this will get the imagination going.
Superb reading.
Benjamin Stahl
The first James Herbert book I read was 'The Ghosts Of Sleath'. At the time, I hadn't realized that it was the sequel to another book, titled 'Haunted'.
But seeing as I knew the movie for that one so well, not having read the novel barely affected my understanding of David Ash.
And I was also blown away with that book. It still sits alongside 'Dracula' and 'The Exorcist' as being one of the scariest things I have ever read.
However, every Herbert book I've read since then has been - while not ex
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Cheryl
Fluke by James Herbert begins with a puppy first finding awareness. From the beginning, the dog (who is eventually named Fluke) senses that there is something different about him...he has strange memories, and wonders if he once was a man. Fluke ends up as a homeless stray, but makes friends with a gangster's dog and learns the ropes of dog life. He eventually decides to see if there is any truth to his flashes of memory, and travels back to the town where he suspects he lived as a man, in hopes ...more
Don Woods
Another great book from James Herbert. So well written. His descriptions of how the dog sees people, and the way he describes the communications between the animals and humans is just SO believe able !! Eh, how could he know ? Do yourself a favour, Read it !
Elizabeth Moffat
Totally love it! Not herberts usual horror and suspense but the tale of a dog who used to be a man. Told from the dogs perspective it goes through his early years back to his memories of being human and trying to find his family. Highly recommended!
John Rhodes
Ok I'm a sucker for cute and this book did make me cry (and yes I cried watching Bambie - the Disney fil not the James Bond lady). The film was ok bu tmy fave character was dear old Rumbo!
Rodrigo Marinho
James Herbert departs from his comfort zone and ventures through a heart-warming canine adventure. It is worth noticing that, at the time this book was written, Herbert was already an established and renowned horror-writer, so I can imagine Herbert's apreehension when sending Fluke to his editor: afterall, his fans were awaiting another gore-full book, in the veins of "The Rats" or "The Fog".

By no means this book will ever receive a nobel prize: but its simplicity, the story-telling from a canin
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Anna
Through the eyes of a dog as he journeys to find where he came from, and why he is apparently different to other dogs.
Really interesting concept, and a great read.
Debbie Revell
Absolutely loved this book.
Georgina Price
I've been steadily working my way through James Herbert's catalogue of creepy fiction and decided to pluck up the courage to finally read this. As a HUGE fan of horror, I was undecided about reading Fluke. I knew what it was about in a broad sense and it seemed so different from the genre he knew so well.

Finally, I took the plunge and tucked right in.

First and foremost, to those struggling with whether or not to read his comedy/fantasy about a dog who thinks he's a man ... this is a great book
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Manda
The first book I have read in over four months, i am actually proud of myself. Fluke was an easy book to read as it wasn’t that long and was a familiar story to me. I had seen the film long ago; it’s actually one of my favourite films to watch. Upon discovering it was a book of course I had to read it and at 0.20p from Amazon (sorry folks that deal is no longer running) I could afford to read it.

I really liked the descriptions of things told through a dog’s perspective, makes me wonder if our f
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Juliet
I didn’t not enjoy Fluke. I think I enjoyed it more many years ago or perhaps when I wasn’t reading all of Herbert’s novels in order so that this fell hard on the heels of The Survivor. Written in the first person as a man who finds he has come back as a dog, I find it sometimes engaging sometimes not. It certainly breaks away from the chiller type of horror we expect from Herbert.

Some interesting explorations of animal relationships to humans make you think of that dog you had or knew that used
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Sarah
Well this was a little different to other JH books I read. I actually read this about 20 years ago as a teenager but couldn't remember what happened...which is probably because not a lot REALLY happened. I enjoyed it though, in its own unique canine way. Not breathtaking, and not my favourite of his but a good read all the same...
Barry Duffield
Life after death? Fluke has a unique way of taking the reader on an amazing journey from life as a loving husband, death, and his rebirth as street mongrel in need of answers. There are plenty of great characters and more than enough twists and turns to keep you very entertained.
Kim
This is the only James Herbert book I have read but I am defiantly open to changing that since I read this. I just feel in love with this book defiantly one of my favourites I love how it just flows and you don't have to massively concentrate on it (well i didn't).
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80984
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
More about James Herbert...
The Fog The Rats (Rats, #1) The Dark The Secret Of Crickley Hall Haunted (David Ash, #1)

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