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The Essential Clive Barker: Selected Fiction

4.15  ·  Rating details ·  595 ratings  ·  10 reviews
With a special introduction by Armistead Maupin, author of Tales of the City, this is a unique selection of the author's best short stories and extracts from his novels, chosen by Clive and accompanied by a personal commentary which reveals the man behind the art.
Paperback, 642 pages
Published October 2nd 2000 by HarperCollins Publishers (first published 1999)
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4.15  · 
Rating details
 ·  595 ratings  ·  10 reviews

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Uhg. I was so torn on this book...

I picked this up on sale because I'm a Clive Barker fan who hasn't really read enough of him in my life, in particular his novels (I'm all over his movies and Books Of Blood short stories though! And the Hellraiser comic book spin-offs I really dig too).

On the one hand, this is a great collection of Clive's various writings, giving you glimpses into a number of the fantastic worlds and characters he's created. Barker's a master of horror fiction and there's a l
Geert Daelemans
Aug 23, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror
A complete rip-off

There are many things wrong with The Essential Clive Barker. For starters, the title is simply incorrect. This book does not give you an overview -or even a hint for that matter- of what Clive Barker is all about. At best it gives you a set of teasers that hopefully will entice you to read the full novels. But why not start by picking up a real novel and explore the craftsmanship of the author yourself. Indeed, a concise version of The Essential Clive Barker should read: close
Michael Whetzel
Nice overview of Barker's work but it is mostly excerpts from his books. Would rather read the complete works themselves. Only for the hardcore fan.
Mar 09, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you have never read anything by Clive Barker and you want to get a feel for his writing, this is an excellent book. However if you want to sink your teeth into a good book, I'd recommend buying one of his novels, or the Books of Blood.
Apr 23, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Clive Barker made a name for himself in the horror genre. But this book shows his strength in the fantastical: science fiction, fantasy, terror, mythological, even theater, and of course horror. The book is set up very creatively-- instead of arranging by date of publication, excerpts from his various works are arranged by theme: Memory, Body, Terror, Doorways, etc. Definitely makes me want to explore more of his works!
Chris Tice
Apr 02, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: didn-t-like
It was a good book for reading passages from his many novels, but without having read all the novels I didn't really follow on some of the themes. I didn't dislike the book but you really have to like his work and read his books to follow along with the themes.
Jan 11, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dark-fantasy, horror
Good for the Barker enthusiast, great for examining common themes and tropes... not so great for actual read-throughs ;>
Dec 16, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
this was a good christmas gift , i still read it. it's so fun , even the pro pieces.
Midnight Blue
A book full of Clive Barker and more Clive Barker...can't think of a better way to spend an afternoon.
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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