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Books of Blood: Volume One (Books of Blood #1)

3.99  ·  Rating Details  ·  14,196 Ratings  ·  348 Reviews
"Everybody is a book of blood; wherever we're opened, we're red." For those who only know Clive Barker through his long multigenre novels, this one-volume edition of the Books of Blood is a welcome chance to acquire the 16 remarkable horror short stories with which he kicked off his career. For those who already know these tales, the poignant introduction is a window on th ...more
Published 1985 by Wiedenfeld & Nicolson (first published 1984)
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Horror...gore...twisted, nightmare imagery...let's get under the covers and read something scary...

There are some truly blood-chilling moments in this excellent collection. Barker has a very unique voice and I thought all of these stories were at least good, with several being remarkable 5+ star worthy gems. Deeply evocative with shocking depictions that will glue themselves to your memory. This is a worthy collection for fans of the genre or anyone who enjoys quality, creative writing and isn

I am reading Barker's work through omnibus editions, but will review them independently mainly due to the amount of time it will take me to tackle them, especially when reading here and there. I would not want to forget something super important (yeah right) during this long journey without notes and highlights. And so on.

First volume of Books of Blood contains 7 short stories from one of the biggest names in horror history. A man I very much adore, a man who has imagination worth of envy. I
Edward Lorn
Jun 22, 2016 Edward Lorn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio-books
I am not a fan of Clive Barker the Novelist . I'll read his novels from time to time, but I try to stay away from his fan's favorites. His books are some of the most overwritten literature I've stumbled upon. But the readers who enjoy him seem to like that aspect of his work. He reminds me of a present day Lovecraft without all the fish people, squid-faced gods, and bigotry. Meaning, I like the idea of Barker's work more than the execution. That being said, I am a fan of Clive Barker the Short S ...more
Jul 02, 2016 Jadranka rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Knjiga krvi 1 je prvi deo Barkerovog krvavog serijala.
Barker je jako eksplicitan prilikom opisa gnusnih delova i krvi ima na sve strane, a čak i kad krene fino i polako sa uvođenjem u priču, čitalac jednostavno zna da ga čeka nešto strašno, vrlo moguće odvratno i samo je pitanje kada i kako će do toga doći.
Ja sam jedna od onih osoba koji se užasavaju gomile toga, pri čemu imam tu "bolesnu" potrebu da što mi je nešto gnusnije to meni više "ide voda na usta" da vidim šta se dalje dešava :) Znate
Paul Nelson
Sep 26, 2014 Paul Nelson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I listened to the audio version of Books of Blood volume 1 and while not being blown away by the majority of the narration, I thought four of the stories exceptional and the remaining two just didn’t do it for me but I guess you will always get that in most collections.

Book of Blood 4*
The first story follows a psychic researcher and a medium as they investigate a haunted house. This story was adapted to become part of the film the Book of Blood and visions of the highway of the dead. The medium
⊱ Irena ⊰
Oct 18, 2014 ⊱ Irena ⊰ rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: anthologies, horror
Books of Blood, Volume 1 is an entertaining six-story anthology. As usual, I didn't love every story. The last two didn't do much for me.

The Book of Blood
The dead have highways and a team of three people is at Tollington Place 65 to witness one of those turnpikes and intersections.

The Midnight Train
Kaufman's love for New York is not as strong as when he came to live there. Someone is butchering people in the subway and he is going to get in the middle of it and learn some of the city's hist
Bark's Book Nonsense
Mar 01, 2011 Bark's Book Nonsense rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: e-book, horror
I originally read this book when it was a brand new release and I was fourteen. I remember buying it with my allowance at the local drugstore. I'm betting most of it went over my head at the time but I have fond memories of scaring people away from speaking to me when reading this. I'm curious how I'll feel about it now that I'm no longer a tormented teen looking to hide from reality.

The Book of Blood
After recently seeing the movie adaptation of this short story, which was dreary, sexualized and
The Book of Blood

The Midnight Meat Train

The Yattering and Jack

Pig Blood Blues

Sex, Death and Star Shine

In the Hills, the Cities
This is my favorite story from this volume. I found this image on deviant art, an awesome depiction of the giant made of people.
Erin ☕ *Proud Book Hoarder*

It’s been so long since I’ve read these that reading them now is almost like experiencing them for the first time all over again. Having a shoddy memory mainly sucks, but in the case of book re-reads, it holds its gifts.

I do remember some things though – like when this came out, Barker was making his way on the horror scene big time, heavily endorsed by King himself, who said: “I have seen the future of horror, and his name is Clive Barker.” This quote was even used, with an actor voiceover, for
Sarah Anne
To my total surprise I am giving this collection of stories four stars. :) One of the things that I struggle with with horror is that it can be incredibly predictable. Not so with this book. Barker does a phenomenal job of making his stories unique and original. There was only one story that I felt was same ol' same ol'. The Yattering and Jack was my favorite, but I also really enjoyed In the Hills, the Cities.
Dec 25, 2014 Addy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I finally finished this and was sorry I waited because the last 2 stories I really enjoyed. Especially the one about the giant human mass which was just genius! Just picturing it in my head was so much fun! Mick and Judd were very likable characters too. My other favorites were The Yattering and Jack and Pig Blood Blues. Highly recommend even if u are not a Barker fan. I'm so glad I have part 2 and 3.
Dec 19, 2010 Michael rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Horror fans, Barker Fans, Gore fans
Recommended to Michael by: Kahlil
Shelves: pulp-fiction
Occasionally I try to read some horror that is not written by HP Lovecraft. When I do, I am invariably reminded that I am not a horror fan, I am a Lovecraft fan. I think reading this, in High School, was the first time I had this experience. Actually, if I recall, I had already read the first story,
"The Book of Blood" (which serves as a kind of "wraparound" to this volume) in Omni magazine. It was better as a standalone, actually. Overall, the stories focus on pain and gore (and the painful asp
Бранимир Събев
Видях бъдещето на ужаса... и то се казва Клайв Баркър.

Шапки долу, дами и господа! Тези думи на самия Стивън Кинг, отпечатани на първа корица съвсем не са случайни. Моите аплодисменти за издателство "Колибри", които се престрашиха да издадат третата в България книга на един от Тъмните Императори в жанра - след "Обречени на Ада" от 90-те и уж детската "Абарат", пред нас със своя първи от общо шест тома "Кървави Книги" застава Клайв Баркър, бащата на емблематичните Хелрейзър и Кендимен. По негови т
May 25, 2011 Patrick rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: book-series, reviewed
Currently, I'm reading Books 1-3 contained in a single volume, but I wanted to review each book individually.

So far, I am quite impressed by Clive Barker's collection of short macabre horror stories. I was a bit skeptical of reading them because I had watched a Hellraiser film (which he directed) and had thought that it was very poor in quality, story and acting. Luckily, I can say that his writing is much better. The book starts with a terrifying statement: "Everybody is a book of blood. Wherev
Mike Kleine
Jan 22, 2012 Mike Kleine rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
CLIVE BARKER’S BOOKS OF BLOOD: 1 is one of the more interesting books I have read this side of 2012, and I’m not even talking about the horror stuff… While some authors are known for their prose, dialogue or surprise twists, Clive Barker just really knows how to write a good story, offering just enough detail but never revealing too much. The text itself contains a meager five (technically, six) stories but for what it lacks in length, it certainly makes up in substance.

Nov 10, 2014 Alexis rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
After an introductory story that's ripped off the Illustrated Man we get:
1.The Midnight Meat Train (2.8/5). A decent story involving a serial killer working for a, literally, underground organisation. Barker hits the brake before the train derails but that's it.
2.The Yattering and Jack (3/5). A lighthearted comedic story about a failed attempt at haunting. Good, not great.
3.Pig Blood Blues (2/5). Not exactly bad, but Barker tries so hard to come up with new ideas that he introduces us to an evil
Jun 14, 2008 Amy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Books of Blood are probably the best things Barker has ever written. These stories are not just (or always) scary, but extremely imaginative. In this collection, the story "In the Hills, the Cities" certainly stretched my brain. "The Yattering and Jack" is also memorable, as a tale of a demon trying to trap a soul, that verges on the slapstick.
Слави Ганев
Кървави книги е сборник с разкази на британския писател Клайв Баркър, който междувременно е художник и артист. Известен е преди всичко със своите хорър и фентъзи творби.

Книгата съдържа шест разказа и е само началото на поредица, която ще се състои от шест тома. Всичко на всичко съдържанието се свежда до шест разказа (то стана съвсем демонично).

Жанрът на творбите обаче не е чист хорър. О, да, не е! Ужасът на Баркър бива представян като по-различен от този на други типични автори в областта (Хауър
2015 Popsugar reading challenge : a book that scares you
2015 Read Harder challenge : a book that someone else has recommended to you

Recommended by my best friend, who's an immense fan of Clive Barker. And I can see why. He's able to imagine situations born in your own nightmares. Never cliché, always terrifying.
Sep 24, 2014 George rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
These books were first published way back in 1984, before Barker was a name and before he even had got his technique down to a tee. Before this he was a starving artist, selling off his sculptures and writing plays. His luck turned around when a publishing agent read some of the stories and asked for more. He would write plays in the day and stories at night. The books were first published in a omnibus of 1-3 and then 4-6.

They were a publishing phenomenon, and as even Mark Gatiss of TV's 'the L
Nov 03, 2015 Mike rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror, short-fiction
1. The Book of Blood ***
2. The Midnight Meat Train ****
3. The Yattering and Jack **
4. Pig Blood Blues ****
5. Sex, Death, and Starshine **
6. In the Hills, The Cities *****

3.5 stars. Not frightening but at least imaginative.
Tobin Elliott
I've read almost everything Barker has written, with the notable exceptions of the Books of Blood and the Abarat series. I figured it was time to remedy that, so here I am, back where it all began.

Barker's a hell of a nice guy (I had the pleasure of meeting him a few years back in Toronto) and a hell of a writer. I think the thing that impresses me the most is that nothing is off limits for him and the reader will likely never be able to predict where his stories will go.

That's both a plus and a
Иван Величков
Отлагах срещата си с литературата на Клай Баркър с години. Харесвам изявите му в киното, компютърните игри и комиксите, но имаше един страх от разочарование, за радост неоправдан, който винаги е в мен, когато става въпрос за доказани и хвалени писатели.
Изненада та ми беше огромна. Очаквах да е брутален, очаквах да е гротески перверзен, но не очаквах да е толкова дълбоко социален(макар, Кендимен да ми е от любимите филми). Подборът и подредбата на разказите са перфектни. Не те изморяват, оставя т
Apr 05, 2012 Julio rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: terror
Uno de los Libros de Sangre. Y seguro que intentaré encontrar los otros. Barker no tiene una pluma, tiene un escalpelo que deja la piel en carne viva y te deja hipnotizado por lo roja que se ve tu carne. Los cuentos de estos Libros exploran las historias que desarrollan hasta el límite de lo soportable y más allá. Nada detiene al escritor. Ningún escrúpulo estético o literario le impide penetrar en lo más profundo de la locura, la maldad, o la depravación. Hasta espacio para el humor hay. Muy ne ...more
Scott Rhee
Apr 20, 2013 Scott Rhee rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror, short-stories
Clive Barker's "Books of Blood" was an eye-opener for me when I first read it in high school. Besides being the first book I read that included a graphic gay sex scene (which may not seem like a big deal now, but for a pretty naive kid living in an ultra-conservative community, it seemed pretty subversive and taboo, which is, of course, why I loved it), it was also one of the first horror short story collections which straddled the lines of the horror genre and literary fiction. Barker's just a ...more
Apr 12, 2010 Amanda rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is volume one of three volumes that comprise Clive Barker's The Books of Blood. It consists of 6 short stories. Probably some of the best contemporary horror out there, most assuredly some of the best i've ever been acquanted with. Barker is a literary artist when it comes to this genre, as well as fantasy. I know 5 stars is high for a horror collection but within the genre i feel it deserves this rating. This was the sixth book by him i've read and i haven't found a junker among them- the ...more
Feb 26, 2009 Dreadlocksmile rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Back in 1984, Clive Barker made his name within the deeply competitive world of horror with the publication of the first three volumes of the macabre short stories 'The Books Of Blood'. Written in his spare time, he admits that he was not expecting them to sell really at all, let alone predict the public response that followed. The release exploded within the horror literature genre, hailing Barker as an exciting and imaginative newcomer. Stephen King, already known as a master in the genre, wen ...more
Paul Darcy
Jan 08, 2012 Paul Darcy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror
By Clive Barker, published in 1984.

Been quite a while since I cracked open a Clive Barker book (my last was Weaveworld about 1987) and partook of his particular sense of horror.

And it is particular, and twisted and weird and leaves a lasting impression on you. Which, for some, may be a good thing and for others not such a good thing depending on your sensibilities. He uses colourful language and disturbing sexual situations so be warned - this stuff is not the Sunday funnies.

This is his first Bo
Asghar Abbas
Dec 25, 2015 Asghar Abbas rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Strongly worded horror, a beautifully written work of its genre about the tragedy of being nonhuman. Scary read. Perfect for October or any other month. Read it. As exquisitely worded as the contents were horrible. Yum. Just delicious.

October read this was, my Samhain fun. The volume was just so entertaining, it was quite something else. Fearless writing coupled with old school words. There were two ways about it. Every story in this volume was so well written and very interesting in concept a
I have never read any Clive Barker, though he is one of my husband's favorite authors. With the movie Midnight Meat Train coming out soon, I thought I would read the short story first and see what Barker is like in print (I've seen several movies based on his stories before).

The story was very much what I expected. The story focused on the hard and dirty ascpects of life, was gory, and was centered on an outrageous idea, which is revealed at the end.

My husband and I are curous how they will ma
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  • Borderlands 1
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  • The Conqueror Worms
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  • The Complete Clive Barker's The Great And Secret Show
  • Nightmare Seasons
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  • Clive Barker's Night Breed: Genesis
Clive Barker was born in Liverpool, England, the son of Joan Rubie (née Revill), a painter and school welfare officer, and Leonard Barker, a personnel director for an industrial relations firm. Educated at Dovedale Primary School and Quarry Bank High School, he studied English and Philosophy at Liverpool University and his picture now hangs in the entrance hallway to the Philosophy Department. It ...more
More about Clive Barker...

Other Books in the Series

Books of Blood (6 books)
  • Books of Blood: Volume Two (Books of Blood #2)
  • Books of Blood: Volume Three (Books of Blood #3)
  • The Inhuman Condition (Books of Blood #4)
  • In the Flesh (Books of Blood #5)
  • Books of Blood: Volume Six (Books of Blood, #6)

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“I don't want to see another church; the smell of the places makes me sick. Stale incense, old sweat, and lies...

"In the Hills, the Cities”
“Kaufman almost smiled at the perfection of its horror. He felt an offer of insanity tickling the base of his skull, tempting him into oblivion, promising a blank indifference to the world.” 4 likes
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