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Blue World

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  4,827 ratings  ·  177 reviews
From the battlefields of a Vietnam veteran's memory to an old-time movie hero's search for a serial killer, from Halloween in a special town--where the rules of trick-or-treat are written in blood--to a Texas road where a wrong turn leads to a nest of evil, horror master McCammon is at his terrifying best in this collection of stories.
Mass Market Paperback, 435 pages
Published April 1990 by Pocket Books (first published 1989)
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Average rating 3.94  · 
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 ·  4,827 ratings  ·  177 reviews

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Edited 12.27.13 after the third read.
I started off making notes on each story that I thought was above average, as you can see below...

The first story in this collection knocked my socks off. It was eerily reminiscent of an episode of The Twilight Zone. The bees! 5*
Edited: It turns out that this actually WAS a Twilight Zone magazine story in 1986.

The second story, "Makeup" was a tribute to horror films of old, with all kinds of references to a previous Robert McCammon novel, They Thirst. 4*

I love short stories. A volume of short stories is not something that's very likely to be published now, so whenever I come upon one I feel like a child who has been given a box of chocolate. And like Forrest's momma said, you never know what you gonna get when you decide to open one.

Robert McCammon is a master storyteller, and "Blue World" is a great example of his skill. Writing a short story is a task that requires considerable ability - an author has very limited space for characterization a
Oct 02, 2012 rated it really liked it
Seeing that the author of this book of short stories and one novella is Robert McCammon, I was expecting some scary stuff, AND I was not disappointed. I got to have an unsettling look inside the mind of a spree killer and spend a creepy All Hallow's Eve with a man who discovers that once a year, you need to GIVE if you wanna GET.

BUT...not all the stories were terrifying.

I got to meet a traveling canary that brings magic and wonder to some prisoners. A story about an elderly man who decides to b
Paul O'Neill
Nov 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This man is one of the best storytellers ever. As popular as he is in the horror community, he is still massively underrated.

This collection of short stories contain some of the best I've ever read. Blue World, the title story, is also the best novella I've ever read.

Other favourites that I will definitely read again soon are Yellachile's Cage, Strange Candy, Nightcrawler's, Pin, and Night Calls the Green Falcon..
Adam Light
This is a terrific collection of shorts by one of the finest storytellers alive and working today.
McCammon ably demonstrates his ability to maneuver deftly into different genres and come out with interesting, sometimes unforgettable results. I really loved this collection. I think the standouts are Pin, Something Passed By, Night Calls the Green Falcon, Doom City, and Yellow Jacket Summer. There isn't a bad story in the book. Some were just more memorable than the rest. The title novella was the
Twerking To Beethoven
Dec 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Great short story collection with more than a shining & precious gem - one of them being "He'll Come Knocking at your Door" which turned out to be one of the best Halloween tales I've ever read.

The rest of the stories have a unique Twilight Zone flavour to them, and that definitely adds to the quality of the book itself.

The novella "Blue World" is truly a masterpiece. It's got everything I'm looking for when it comes to good story-telling: sharp humour, high tension, bitching characters (includ
Jun 12, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
McCammon is one of the best in the business. While I prefer his stories in a longer format, he can still write some damn fine shorts.

Jul 05, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: All adults
Recommended to Pamellia by: Buddy read
Shelves: 2015
Blue World by Robert McCammon
January 11, to January 15, 2015
Buddy read from Goodreads HR

Here we have a story of the nightmare the XXX—rated life style can create. A beautiful girl is shot through the head while satisfying her killer. I know, how creepy is that? Her friend, Debby (also part of this life-style), is so upset and frightened. When she finds out what has happened she goes to a priest and partakes of the Sacrament of Reconciliation, but really she just wanted to talk to someone (she t
Aug 12, 2007 rated it it was amazing
One of the craziest books of short stories I have ever read. I think I was quoting the story, 'Something Passed By'. for years and years after I read it. "He was sitting on the front porch in the steamy heat of mid-day, sipping from a glass of gasoline, when the doomscreamer came." I am a harlot for great sentences, and this one is one of my top ten.
Nov 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: horror
I'm not a big fan of short stories, but I do read them occasionally. Man I'm glad I picked this up. Already familiar with the author, so his style was comfortable and made it easy to jump right into each story. If your not familiar with Robert McCammon, this is a good place to start.

The stories create a mood of horror that gave me chills. There is graphic stuff throughout that is not for the weak heart. There were a couple of cheesy ones, but they were what they were meant to be so it's not like
David Agranoff
At this point in my life my favorite authors are John Shirley, F.Paul Wilson and Robert McCammon. McCammon wrote my second favorite novel of all time – Swan Song. He has written several other favorites in my collection including Mine and the weird crime classic Gone South. I had been saving two of his books for the “Right time” for years. That has included “Boy’s Life,” and his short story collection “Blue World.”

While I still have found the perfect time for the other yet, I read Blue World thi
⭐⭐⭐⭐ "Yellowjacket Summer" A mother and her two kids stop at a rural gas station but find bigger problems than the heat.

⭐⭐⭐⭐ "Makeup" A small-time thief steals a dead horror star's makeup case and quickly learns its contents are more than just makeup.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ "Doom City" A man who awakens one morning to find a skeleton in bed where his wife had been the night before.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ "Nightcrawlers" A Vietnam veteran comes seeking shelter from the storm and the nightmares of his past.

⭐⭐⭐ "Pin" The unsettling r
Excellent and amazing volume, all in the same time! The Blue World was the most surprising novella, about a catholic priest that gets in love with a porn star...I didn`t knew any of these stories so the effect after reading them was more powerful than usual...

Very, very strong volume of short stories that I recommend it with all my heart to the readers out there!
Mar 30, 2017 rated it really liked it
A wonderful selection of Fantasy stories, bordering on fear. Mr. McCammon has been a favorite author of mine since my teens. A great writer with a very vivid imagination!
Apr 23, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a terrific collection of short fiction from Robert McCammon, who proved that he is an equally adept writer at any length. Nightcrawlers is an eerie story that was made into what was arguably the best episode of the '90s T.Z. reboot, Pin is a short tale with quite a punch, and the titular story is a thought-provoking short novel that's quite memorable. My favorite is the bittersweet Night Calls the Green Falcon, but there are really no "filler" stories in the book; they're all good dark s ...more
Reeda Booke
Feb 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: collection, horror
4.5 stars rounded to 5. Loved almost all the stories. The only one I didn't care for was PIN. It was just too weird.
Rich Stoehr
May 10, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Re-reading "Blue World," I was reminded of why it's such a pity McCammon doesn't write more than he does.

"Blue World" is a collection of 12 short stories spanning McCammon's career, and one novella. The stories are all worth reading, offering up a good variety of material, from the frightening ("Yellowjacket Summer") to the disturbing ("Pin") to the sublime (the novella, "Blue World").

What this collection brings to mind most, however, is McCammon's skill at setting a mood. He tells a great story
Jan 18, 2013 rated it really liked it
Blue World by Robert McCammon is a collection of his early stories and one novella, Blue World. The stories are excellent with a few: Chico, PIN, Yellowjacket Summer, Nightcrawlers, Yellachile, are almost perfect horror stories. Chico and PIN are my favorites. The other stories are good too, just not as perfect.

However what lowered this from 5 to 4 stars was inclusion of the long novella Blue World itself. I thought the plot was formulaic: black night, fallen white night, female fallen angel, w
Pam Baddeley
A collection of short fiction which ranges from a slightly sentimental story set in a prison to extreme surreal dystopia and post-apocalypse fiction. The main part of the book is taken up with a novella which rather unbalances the collection as it deals with the passion that a Catholic priest develops for a woman who is a porn star and cocaine addict, and is being stalked by a psychotic killer who murders porn stars. A certain character appears who is obviously set up to be a victim and the whol ...more
Daniel Corey
Aug 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This is my second favorite collection of short stories I’ve ever read (after King’s untouchable classic anthology, Night Shift). Experiencing these excellent tales was a pure joy from start to finish. SO many heavy hitters in here. Blue World has everything I look for in a horror collection: intriguing premises, a large variety, an abundance of creative twists, and very satisfying endings! My favorites include: Something Passed By, Nightcrawlers, Blue World, He’ll Come Knocking At Your Door, Mak ...more
Paulo "paper books always" Carvalho
I read this book soon after I read Baal. Second Chance and I was dissapointed because not all stories were that good and for me most of them were not that satisfactory… (unfortunally). I still believe he is a good writer because he has some good stories here…

"Yellowjacket Summer" – This story is boy with a power to talk to Yellowjackets (bees? Hornets?). If in the beginning was a little slow the ending was an good one.
"Makeup" – a Thief steals a make up from an old horror movies actor and gets a
Tobin Elliott
Oct 18, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, horror, hard-copy
I'm often hot and cold with short story collections. Various author collections seem to bug me the most, because the quality tends to be all over the place. And with single-author collections such as this one, well, it's often hit or miss. Either the author kicks ass, or they suck.

Thankfully, I think, for the most part, McCammon kicked some serious ass here.

This is my introduction to McCammon the short story author. And, to be honest, he should do more of it. There's the odd one that didn't qui
Adam Wilson
Apr 02, 2010 rated it really liked it
Robert R. McCammon doesn't get nearly enough credit in my opinion. I've read five of his books and all of them deserve much more notice than they have received. Blue World is his short story collection and every single story in this book is worth reading and very enjoyable. Yellowjacket Summer actually gave me chills because I am terrified of insectts that sting or bite and there are millions in this story. "Makeup" was something completely new and was one of my favorites from this book "He'll C ...more
May 23, 2010 rated it really liked it
Robert McCammon is best know for his rather long horror novels such as Stinger, Hour of The Wolf, and Swan's Song. Blue World is his only collection of short fiction and it is unfortunate that McCammon does not spend more time in this medium. The short story demonstrates his ability to tell a tale distinctly, economically and with maximum impact. Most of these tales are short and to the point yet packs a horrific punch. There is not a bad story here yet the highlights are a tale about a Vietnam ...more
May 26, 2014 rated it liked it
There are some outstanding horror stories here along with a couple that didn't really interest me, but still, they were quick and pleasant diveresions.
The last chapter however, "Blue World", about a priest who falls in love with an adult entertainer, comprises about a third of the whole book and isn't horror story at all. Minus two stars at least for that unpleasantness.
Gregor Xane
Mar 27, 2011 rated it did not like it
Shelves: 2011
I didn't read every story in this collection. I couldn't. I did read most of them, but there was nothing here that compelled me to read them all. "Night Calls the Green Falcon" was pretty good. The title story, the novella, "Blue World," had a promising start, but the end just wasn't satisfying.
Maya Ivers
Mar 11, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I don't have a lot of time at the moment to post a lengthy review. For now, I will just say that I have owned this book for at least 15 years and have lost count of how many times I have re-read it.
Corey Woodcock
Jul 25, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Wow. Not even sure where to start with this review, as I don’t want to spoil anything, but there’s so much I could say. First of all, this gets 4.8/5. If “Night Shift” didn’t exist, this would be my favorite short story collection ever, it’s all top notch material in here. Horror, drama, cosmic horror, old school monster horror, with some shades of Boys Life and even Shawshank Redemption for good measure. I recommend this for fans of good stories, no matter what genre is your bread and butter.

Luke Kondor
Mar 21, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ooh I do love a good short story collection!

As always, not every story landed but the ones that did land... blew my tiny little mind.

Yellowjacket Summer - A great opener!
Nightcrawlers - This reminded me of a Twilight Zone episode. Turns out it WAS a Twilight Zone episode.
Yellachile's Cage - A bit of sweetness helps the horror go down.
He'll Come Knocking at Your Door - Freddy Krueger levels of horror fun.
Something Passed By - This was a five-star story. Actually one of my favourite short stories
Dave Edmunds
Aug 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
In a word.... sensational. Damn can McCammon write and short stories are no exception. This collection is packed with horrifying, suspenseful and emotional pieces of stellar fiction from one of the masters in the horror genre. If you love the collections of Stephen King, then I thoroughly recommend having a dabble with these. You won't be dissapointed. I guarantee it.

My top five entries are:

1 Something Passed By
2 Blue World
3 Nightcrawlers
4 He'll Come Knocking at Your Door
5 Makeup
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 next »

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Robert Rick McCammon was a full-time horror writer for many years. Among his many popular novels were the classics Boy's Life and Swan Song. 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.

His next novel, a standalone book called The Li

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