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The Count Of Eleven
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The Count Of Eleven

3.4 of 5 stars 3.40  ·  rating details  ·  149 ratings  ·  11 reviews
Jack Orchard seems a normal family man - apart, perhaps from his excessive interest in numerology. When he gets into deep trouble, both he and his wife seem close to cracking. Then, by chance, he receives a chain letter promising good fortune, but things get even worse.
Mass Market Paperback, 384 pages
Published (first published January 1st 1991)
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This is an extremely unusual book for the "infamous" Ramsey Campbell.

It follows a logical story, and the horror does not take any Lovecraftian liberties, or follow any type of Lovecraft shout outs.

I completely enjoyed this book, but because I love Campbell, and have always adored his books, I hesitated before I gave it 5 stars simply because it I didn't want anyone who read this review be under the impression that Campbell got five stores when he was fairly restrained in his writing, without al
Jayaprakash Satyamurthy
A serial killer novel, told from the point of view of a man who is pushed by a string of misfortunes and a certain propensity for obsessive behaviour, into a series of ghastly murders. It doesn't have the supernatural aspects of Campbell's usual work, but it draws on his strong feel for character and gradual immersion into the macabre. Effective, but not essential.
This book showed up in our office's informal lending library, so I thought I'd give it a whirl. I like psychological thrillers, and this seemed like a good one.

Jack Orchard is obsessed with numerology, and thinks of eleven as his lucky number. When he is sent a chain letter, with instructions to send it on to 13 people in order to "turn ill luck into good," he decides to do just that. His family is trying to buy a larger house, and he figures it can't hurt.

Well, all sorts of misfortunes start to
I've always been a big fan of Ramsey Campbell's supernatural fiction, less fond of his serial-killer phase, but I was more than pleased with this one. Yes, it's showing its age a little, as shown by the copious references to specific computer systems, not to mention the fact that the main character runs a video library, but it doesn't detract from the story in too much. The credit card incident wouldn't happen nowadays, and he'd certainly not have got away with his antics at customs, but if you ...more
Boris Cesnik
Sorry Ramsey, for me this was a big NO.

No for the characters, quite non-believable and lame
No for the plot, weak and not very well thought through
No for the suspense, almost non-existent until the very end
No for the writing, not your usual pompous, archaic and languid style
No for the story, too thin
No for the reading, boring and time wasting

It gets saved just at the en by the ending itself. It's a YES for the unexpected finale.
Otis Campbell
You're standing in the rain with
No cover but you never complain
You're an angry young man face to
Face but your mirrors insane
Jb Lee
For the most part I prefer supernaturally based horror fiction, but this serial killer tale works. The much-put-upon Jack Orchard is my favorite of Ramsey Campbell's various monsters, not least because he's a darkly comic one, and an oddly sympathetic character... not unlike Sondheim's Sweeney Todd. I don't imagine you'd ever get a song outta Jack, though...
Anne Hayes
This is an all time favourite story for me... Classic horror. I simply love the concept and the way the author brings the main character to life as he tries to cope with misfortune and fails miserably. The mess he creates spirals out of control in short order. It may be out of print but you can obtain a copy from bigger online book distributors.
Lori Schiele
The main antagonist in this book was likened to Hannibal Lector ("Silence of the Lambs") but I found no similarities between the two characters what-so-ever. The storyline dragged on and on and was generally vague in a number of places, making it difficult to follow... until I finally gave up on following it at all.
I read this book over 10 years ago but have to say the story really stuck with me. Certainly some of the reference points are a little dated but this does not detract from the fact that the story is well written from start to finish.

Perhaps the count could swim........
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John Ramsey Campbell is a British writer considered by a number of critics to be one of the great masters of horror fiction. T. E. D. Klein has written that "Campbell reigns supreme in the field today," while S. T. Joshi has said that "future generations will regard him as the leading horror writer of our generation, every bit the equal of Lovecraft or Blackwood."
More about Ramsey Campbell...
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