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Books of Blood: Volume Two (Books of Blood #2)
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Books of Blood: Volume Two

(Books of Blood #2)

4.11  ·  Rating details ·  9,500 ratings  ·  223 reviews
Alternate Cover Edition of ISBN 9780425087398

To a surgeon, cutting into the human body is an art. Muscle and flesh are his canvas, the scalpel his tool. He studies the composition of the organs -- their balance and form -- the structure of the bones and network of blood vessels. He makes his incision, cutting, slicing with loving care. — Clive Barker is another type of sur
Mass Market Paperback, 193 pages
Published September 1986 by Berkley Books (first published 1984)
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Nate Given that these predate Goosebumps, don't you mean "Goosebumps is basically Books of Blood for kids?"

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4.11  · 
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 ·  9,500 ratings  ·  223 reviews

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Sep 23, 2011 rated it liked it
From the opening slice of his second viscera-dripping Book o’ Blood, Clive Barker carves into the mind of the reader an apt description of the primary theme explored in this collection:
There is no delight the equal of dread. If it were possible to sit, invisible, between two people on any train, in any waiting room or office, the conversation overheard would time and again circle on that subject. Certainly the debate might appear to be about something entirely different; the state of the natio
Oct 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
Do you know what I like about Clive Barker's stories? It is the sheer verity of the macabre filled tales he presents for us. If I am sitting down with a Clive Barker story, I know I will be reading something new!

Same applies to this collection. There are five creepy tales, varying from psychological horror to supernatural horror, from hell sponsored races to superhuman femme fatale, and from monsters that created men to monsters that men create.

The collection opens with a dreadful tale called
Bill  Kerwin
Jun 15, 2007 rated it really liked it

This is a well-written and well-constructed book of stories, but already—in his second book of horror fiction—Clive Barker shows evidence of decline.

The first “Book of Blood” was obsessed with the fleshiness of mortality, entwined in the corporeal roots of fear. This singlemindedness gave the work a classic quality: it was the work of a man eager to eviscerate a multitude, in a quest either to reclaim some lost refinement or to obliterate his sensibilities altogether. This much was clear: his pa
Paul Nelson
Apr 11, 2015 rated it really liked it
Volume 2 of Clive Barkers Books of Blood contains 5 positively delectable tales of terror starting with Dread, Quaid is a man who experiments with fear. He picks his test subject and forces them to realise their ultimate horror and how long it takes to get there but his own dread can't stay hidden forever.

Hell's Event is a charity race held in London every hundred years, a race between Hell and mankind, the winner to rule the earth. Equal doses of Hell's representatives and the unwitting ideal
Erin *Proud Book Hoarder*
A mixed bag of short stories - not as good as the first volume, but most of the stories were still impressive.

Unfortunately the first short story, Dread, wasn't too my liking. Strange since I usually love the book of blood stories, but it was weird and just kind of pointless. A man obsessed with fear trials takes it too far to make his point.

Hell's Event was my favorite of the group. A charity race held every hundred years where the contest winnings could literally mean the end of the world as
Edward Lorn
Jul 22, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Barker fans
"Dread" - Four stars. I think the story begins to flag after the vegetarian scene, but it's still a disturbing ride.

"Hell's Event" Four stars. A little too political for my liking, but you gotta love Barker's imagination.

"Jacqueline Ess: Her Will and Testament" Five stars. Brutal and nasty and sexy and fucking weird.

"The Skins of the Fathers" Five stars. Monster sex. Wicked stuff, yo.

"New Murders in the Rue Morgue" Two stars. It was okay. Probably my least favorite Barker story until I find one
ᴥ Irena ᴥ
Oct 18, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror, anthologies
One of the interesting things about this selection of stories is that I found myself rooting for a homicidal clown (or a clownish character to be precise), a female serial killer and demons.

I prefer supernatural horror to the realistic human monsters. Dread features a real life possibility, a man who in his quest to beat his fears became an unfeeling monster.

Hell's Event
Every hundred years a race takes place in London. Only few know about it. This year a young successful runner will hav
Pantelis Andreou
Barker never cease to amaze me with his short stories! These 5 stories were even better than the first others
Anthony Vacca
The second Books of Blood is a lot less accomplished than its preceding cycle of short stories. While those were the work of an imagination unhinged, though with purpose, these are less realized--and as a result less successful--flights of dark fancy that only offer thrills at a surface level. Sure, there are impossible transformations of the flesh, otherworldly beings with inscrutable desires, and the blurring of pain and pleasure as two separate emotions; but here these feel more perfunctory r ...more
Brandon Petry
This is my second reading (as far as I can remember) of Clive Barker's Books of Blood: Volumes One to Three since high school when they blew my mind apart. My interest to re-read these stories came earlier this summer when I re-read ""Jacqueline Ess: Her Will And Testament" as reprinted in the excellent collection Behold! Oddities, Curiosities and Undefinable Wonders edited by Doug Murano.
In 2014 it was announced that Game of Thrones actress Lena Headey was set to star in the movie version of
Dec 08, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: horror
I read Dread ages ago in its graphic art format and really can’t remember much about it besides the fact that it made my skin crawl a little.

Stephen Grace is a university student who catches the eye of a teacher named Quaid. Stephen is afraid of public speaking but Quaid instructs him not only to give voice to his fears but to analyze them. Quaid is fascinated with dread in all its facets and revels in learning more about it.

I have to admit this short story took some work getting into. Sev
Aug 08, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My favorite from this volume was probably The Skins of the Fathers.
Feb 26, 2009 rated it it was amazing
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 new comer. Stephen King, already known as a master in the genre, we ...more
Jarek "the Mistborn" Dąbrowski
The second book of blood was just as good as the first one for me. I think there was more gory stuff in this one though. Any way there are 5 stories i liked them all so i give this 5 stars:) Underneath all the sick bloody stuff there are some serious themes in these stories. I like that. The skins of the fathers was the most gruesome i think:D I will be reading vol 3 for sure
Jun 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved Books of Blood volume 1 and loved this one even more. All five stories are 4.5 to 5 star quality. My only experience with Barker are these first two Books of Blood and I'm blown away with how this guy writes. Dare I say that this guy might be up there with the likes of King himself?

Highly recommend these Books of Blood for those (like me) who are new to this author.
Nov 09, 2015 rated it liked it
Hell's Event**
Jacqueline Ess****
The Skins of the Fathers****
New Murders in the Rue Morgue***
Armand Rosamilia
Jul 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
Another book I read over thirty years ago as a teen, and it's still holding up. Re-reading it after all these years was enjoyable, and I remembered a couple of the stories but not all of them.

Favorites are opener "Dread" and "Jacqueline Ess" for the characters involved. Glad I went back to this!
Jun 22, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
On the whole, I enjoyed this follow-up collection...just a tiny bit less than the first one. The two standout stories of the five for me were 'Dread,' for its ability to unsettle and disturb, and 'The Skins of the Fathers,' for the cinematic visuals and pacing. On to book 3.
Feb 28, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: book-series, reviewed
The first story was Dread. I quite liked this one. It begins with a student and teacher, Quaid and Cheryl, discussing emotions like fear and dread. When Cheryl says she can’t feel fear, Quaid manages to prove her wrong. This part is shown as Quaid’s guest, Steve, is browsing through Quaid’s collection of photographs. In this part of the story, Quaid recollects how he imprisoned Cheryl with only a piece of steak to eat. (She’s a vegetarian.) The way Clive Barker describes this is very effective. ...more
Feb 14, 2010 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: people who need to see how literary horror fiction can be
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Rowan MacBean
Jul 29, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: short-stories
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
David Agranoff
Saw this on the shelf at the library and decided to re-read this classic. Barker was the master of Horror short stories in the eighties and all the stories hold up very well. Dread the opening story is probably the most well-known from this volume. It is remembered with good reason, it is a powerful story that in many ways predates and proves the wrongs of the excessive trend of torture porn in horror. It was also recently made into an OK movie.

To me stories that worked best for me this time wer
Clive Barker's Books of Blood is a series of his short stories. I had this one a long time ago and didn't get to it before someone decided they needed the book more than I did. I held off for awhile because it really pains me to buy the same book twice.

Anyway, I found myself mixed on this one. I enjoyed the first story, Dread. The entire concept entertained me and it was pretty well written. I also enjoyed Hells' Event and Jacqueline Ess: Her Will And Testament.

After those stories, I began The S
Feb 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
Everything I said in my review for the first volume applies for this volume as well. Flawless ideas and execution.

I do have to mention, though, that for some reason I din't like this volume as much as the first. Maybe it was the subjects and personal preference, maybe my expectations were raised. Doesn't matter. I still enjoyed this volume very much. My favourite story was probably "Dread", and my least favourite "The Skins of the Fathers". (God, the description of the Philosophy students was D
Cory Eadson
Sep 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A sensational piece of writing. Beautifully written, vivid, and shocking.
Oct 28, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: horror
I enjoyed these fantastical stories very much and this was a very quick read for me. There are five short stories in this volume. My favorites were the first story, Dread, which filled me with dread while reading it, so I loved that, and New Murders in the Rue Morgue. In that story, Barker immediately puts you in the mood by describing the lead character as the great-nephew of the man who inspired Edgar Allen Poe to write The Murders in the Rue Morgue. And, who doesn’t get creeped out thinking a ...more
Scot Parker
Apr 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was even better than Volume 1 in my opinion, well worth reading. Be warned - these stories are graphic, bleak, and disturbing. Barker sails into the waters of the taboo from time to time. Bear this in mind as you decide whether to read these stories. There are 5 short stories, reviewed as follows:

1 - Dread: 5 stars. This one floored me. It was a deeply chilling story about one psychology student's investigations into the emotion of dread and the lengths to which he was willing to go to obta
Sep 25, 2014 rated it liked it

People were lambs and sheep, all looking for shepherds. Of course these shepherds were fictions... All that existed, in the darkness outside the sheep-fold were the fears that fixed on the innocent mutton: waiting, patient as stone, for their moment.

For a moment, glancing over his shoulder at the mouth that opened under him, he thought he saw monsters stirring below him. Ridiculous, loony things, crudely drawn, dark on dark. Vile graffiti leered up from his childhood and uncurled their cl
Like in Vol.1 some stories were ok, but mostly they seemed sort of cheap to me. Captivating like every pageturner, but as I was reading it there was always a feeling that it's too 'fake'. Lots of irrelevant erotic scenes that seemed to have been added on purpose rather then for the sake of the plot. Maybe I'm wrong and it's the feature of Barker's universe: lots of gore and erotic. But it seemed cheap to me nonetheless.
A special book with a lot of history and personal significance for me. It shattered my book world and I never forgot it. I still refer to many of these stories in conversation.
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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

Other books in the series

Books of Blood (6 books)
  • Books of Blood: Volume One (Books of Blood #1)
  • 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)
“It’s only when you’ve lost someone that you realize the nonsense of that
phrase “It’s a small world”. It isn’t. It’s a vast, devouring world, especially if you’re alone.”
“She was a sea: and I had to swim in her.” 45 likes
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