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The Space Vampires

3.38  ·  Rating Details ·  478 Ratings  ·  61 Reviews
When Captain Carlsen entered the vast derelict spaceship, he was stunned by its awesome splendor--and shaken by the discovery of its immobilized humanoid passengers.

Later, after three of those strange aliens had been transported to Earth, his foreboding was more than justified. The creatures were energy vampires whose seductive embraces were total, whose lust for vitality
Mass Market Paperback, 220 pages
Published February 1st 1977 by Simon & Schuster (first published 1976)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Ben Loory
okay, so, setting aside the title, which is maybe the dumbest title for a book ever, this is actually a very smart book. maybe too smart, actually. it starts off absolutely fascinating with a 50-mile-long alien spaceship showing up in our solar system, in which there are a bunch of dead human bodies and a map of greece drawn circa 2000+ b.c.; then it rapidly descends into people yammering on about vampires and life force and sex roles and theories about evolution and yadda yadda yadda. where's t ...more
Feb 09, 2009 Melissa rated it it was amazing
This book was awesome. A very interesting take on what life force in humans is and how it can be related to this version of vampires. There are definately some new thoughts about vampire-type beings, and it is a good thriller. Very enjoyable.
R. Burns
May 21, 2009 R. Burns rated it liked it
I read this book years, years ago. Colin Wilson was one of those seminal sci-fiction writers that had a big effect on me as young man. I'm primarily reading it now because I was cleaning under the bed and found a 1977 Pocket Book edition. I reread it years ago because of the movie version, "LifeForce," which aside from the full-frontal nude shots of the beautiful space vampire, was rather disappointing.
Actually,the movie was good for what it was intended to be, a good British Sci-fi B-movie, a g
The Space Vampires is by no means a great scifi book. Colin Wilson's style is somewhat awkward and mechanical. In fact, it almost seems this book were contrived as a means of expressing his ideas on the dynamic of vampiric exchange and the nature of consciousness, and that's fine by me because Wilson is spot on with his observations. From what I've been told his novel The Mind Parasites is a similar venture into expressing his ideas as fiction. I plan on reading that very soon.

The end of the boo
David Agranoff
Space Vampires AKA(Lifeforce) By Colin Wilson
216 pages
Out of print

This science fiction horror crossover is remembered mostly from the Cannon films adaptation of the novel. The film while produced by Cannon films the schlock studio behind the cinematic ascension of Chuck Norris and the Sho Kosugi Ninja trilogy is not that bad. They certainly hired excellent cast and crew. Directed by Texas chainsaw massacre director Tobe Hooper, adapted by Alien Screenwriter Dan O'Bannon and scored by Harry Manc
Mark Boszko
May 14, 2011 Mark Boszko rated it liked it
Rushed prose doesn't help the scant story at all, but his notional bits about vampirism, energy and consciousness are intriguing enough for me to have enjoyed the read anyway. It also helps that I have a soft spot for Lifeforce (the movie which is based on the book) for several reasons, not the least of which was the impressionable age at which I saw a good chunk of Mathilda May's prancing about in the buff before my Mom realized what was up.
Rabbit {Paint me like one of your 19th century gothic heroines!}
I enjoyed this despite the misogyny.

It was a vintage pulpy sci-fi novel, so it was exactly how you think it is.

It was a fun, entertaining, and short read (finished it the same day).

This book was extremely dated, but that was part of the charm.

Feb 15, 2012 Frank rated it liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
I originally read this book about 1980 not long after its publication in 1976. On reading it again, I really didn't remember much from the first read. I read it originally because it was written by Colin Wilson. When I was in the military in the early 70s, one of my friends there was a Wilson fanatic and had to read everything ever written by him. Wilson is best known for his nonfiction works such as the "Outsider" and his existentialism philosophy. On my friends recommendation, I read several o ...more
David Moore
Feb 07, 2015 David Moore rated it it was amazing
There's a lot wrong with this book: structurally and in terms of pacing; even the dialogue is clunky and unconvincing. The general idea isn't entirely original either. However, there's something inexplicably alluring about it - that vampiric charm - which draws you in, and entertains you.

But it doesn't suck away your life-force.

It's incredibly light-reading, and pulpy too. However this is Colin Wilson the great philosopher, so if you take a few steps back you're presented with a large tapestry
mark monday
Sep 01, 2013 mark monday rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: z-colin-wilson
don't watch Lifeforce unless you're drunk. read the book instead. can a movie rape a book? yes it can.
Mar 09, 2013 Daniel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: literature, horror
Well, I read this book when I was a teenager, almost twenty years ago, and the little I can remember, I really enjoyed the story. Today, I hardly ever would read a book with such a title (and such synopsis), and, even less I intend to read it again and spoil my diffuse remembrance (fantasy/delusion) that it is a nice title. So, 4 stars for the nostalgia.
Heather *live on coffee & flowers*
I made it about 100 pages into this and was extremely disappointed. There was barely any space, although in the beginning when there WAS space, the book seemed very promising. This was just a bunch of academic types sitting around discussing vampirism, which might have been fine had it not been for the creepy sexism exhibited by the male characters (and the vampirism being of the spirit variety—not into that).
Taliesin Tia
Dec 31, 2013 Taliesin Tia rated it it was amazing
I enjoyed this book! It's ridiculous and over the top and quite sexist (allowances given for time written), but in the end very entertaining. The Aliens had some interesting twists and I would love to read an extension on them. For a light vacation read its perfect.
Paige Ellen Stone
Jul 09, 2013 Paige Ellen Stone rated it it was amazing
There's this movie.... I love this movie... it's called "Lifeforce." I love it because the cast is great, the story arc is great. The reason I am writing a review of the book, called, "Space Vampires," when published by Colin Wilson in 1976 is that one reviewer of the movie said that while a fun movie to watch, it missed the real guts of the story. I found this intriguing and decided to get a kindle copy and see for myself. Lo and behold, the other reviewer was right. The movie maker, Golan/Glob ...more
William Prystauk
Jul 14, 2013 William Prystauk rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Wilson did not write a novel, but an extended stage play of talking heads (when they weren't drinking), who discuss the philosophy of vampirism ad nauseum. It's as if Wilson wanted solely to explore his notion of vampirism and nothing more. As for the elements of science, it's hard to take a book seriously when the the author uses "apparatus" four times on one page.

If you're like me, you probably indulged in the B-movie horror LIFEFORCE (1985), and found your way to the book expecting one great
William Oarlock
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Bryan Hall
Dec 03, 2013 Bryan Hall rated it really liked it
It's Spaaaaace! And Vampires! And some science fiction mumbo-jumbo about energy fields. Then a little bit of a detective story.

In the not-*too*-distant future, a gigantic space-ship full of dead/suspended-animation human[oid?]s suddenly appears to a team studying an asteroid field. Three of the bodies are brought back for study, and then….

Yes, I picked this book up because it was free and for totally ironical reasons. Yes, the writing was clunky. But I liked it! I think it would make a pretty g
Phil Reese
Feb 06, 2016 Phil Reese rated it really liked it
Shelves: paleo-future
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Andrew Ralton
Not at all like the movie Lifeforce, which was the movie based on this book. It's a rather sedate affair, with not a lot of action or horror. The last 10 or so pages seem to be pretty much bolted on and seem a pretty lazy way of resolving the story. This last section, and most of the book actually, are more about the author expounding his ideas of how vampirism might be philosophised as the way some creatures absorb energy from other creatures, and the nature of life force. this is not a convent ...more
Jan 27, 2014 Clint rated it liked it
Shelves: 2014
First off, if you're looking for the book that the insanely awesome Life Force movie was based on, this is it. No wonder they changed the name for the movie, haha.

Anyway, the first 50 pages or so of this book was just rocking as hard as a pirate ship in a hurricane. Some space explorers come across a 50km derelict ship floating around, with insanely huge fixtures, stairs, badass gothic cathedral architecture, weird artwork involving Lovecraftian squiddy things, and some naked people in suspende
Jun 24, 2014 Eric rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Read this in my early teens. It's more than a little bit naive for science fiction but still quite enjoyable.
David Pollison
Jun 18, 2015 David Pollison rated it liked it
This is one of those rare occasions where I liked the movie (LIFEFORECE) more than I liked the book the movie was based upon. But then I don't think that the printed word could ever compete with actress Mathilda May's spectacular assets. The movie LIFEFORCE is not great classic. It plays like a failed Quatermass movie but one of its most exciting ideas was vampires ravaging London which is not in the book at all. Beyond that, the movie is exceptionally faithful to the book which does have some g ...more
Feb 15, 2015 J rated it liked it
5/10 I read this book because I enjoy the schlocky 1985 movie Lifeforce based on it. Whereas the film is overloaded with twists and turns (and boobs), the book is all about discussing things. They have a discussion about vampires, a discussion with the vampire, a discussion after they defeat the vampire, and a discussion after all is done. It's not a horrible book, but it's not that good. For being published in 1976, it has a feel of pulp scifi written decades earlier - perhaps when the author w ...more
K.T. Katzmann
Jan 21, 2016 K.T. Katzmann rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: People Who Love Lifeforce Who I Don't Like, An Editor
This book is famous for inspiring a movie with both Mathilda May spending the vast majority of it walking around naked and Patrick Stewart's first kiss.

This book is nowhere near that riveting.

 photo giphy 2_zps1ccl4bvh.gif
This happens nowhere inside.

The first forty pages promises weirdness. A future expedition to the asteroid field discovers a gigantic floating spaceship, with a gothic interior and naked humanoids in suspended animation. Three of the creatures are brought to Earth. A reporter gains access to the government
Dec 04, 2015 Hiroki rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-japanese
オカルト研究で知られるコリン・ウィルソンによるSFスリラー。登場する地球外生命体は、生命エネルギーを糧とすることで生きながらえる、まさしく「宇宙ヴァンパイアー」。元は肉体を持たない生物で、人間に乗り移る―それも自己欺瞞的な人間が狙われやすいという細かい設定あり―ことができる。過酷な環境に置かれた結果吸血鬼として生きる道を選ばざるを得なくなってしまった者達であり、(以下ネタバレ)最後には同族の者に諭されて吸血鬼化する前の存在へと戻り、自らの罪を客観的に判断して自己消滅するという前代未聞の末路を迎える。生命エネルギーのトンデモ理論とかエイリアンに関する推論だとかがごちゃごちゃと述べられているけど、あまり理解はできてないかも。トビー・フーパー監督による映像化作品『スペースバンパイア』は、面倒な説明はすっ飛ばし、全裸で闊歩するマチルダ・メイや人間の精気を求めるゾンビで溢れかえって崩壊するロンドンの街等、映画としてのリズムの良さやスペクタクルを重視した結果、なんだか凄まじい感動を呼び起こす感情的傑作になっていた。映画版だとカールセンが宇宙で出会った女に溺れた結果、ロンドンが崩壊するという因果がロ ...more
Hahahahahahaha, this book is so '70s. From about page 5 onward, I was reading for the lulz. Pointing out how the mysterious females in suspended animation on the alien ship had great breasts! It being considered a great idea by all and sundry to bring said stasis-bound beings back to Earth, what could go wrong? Sure, rando journalist who's related to my ex-wife, you can sneak into the lab where they're being stored and grope the hot blonde one! The hero being able to resist the predations of the ...more
giudizio sufficiente.
pro: godibile; complessivamente avvincente; descrizione astronave aliena suggestiva (che meglio avrebbe potuto essere sfruttata).
Contro: pur essendo stato scritto nel '75 ha una trama anni '60. Se considero che la SF di StarTrek e' del '66 il "futuro" li era meglio sviluppato sia su basi narrative che soprattutto tecnologiche. Un libro a meta' fra un horror vampiresco/new-age (il succhiare l'energia vitale) ed una invasione di alieni che ci hanno guidato dall'alba dei temp
Jul 09, 2016 Donkic rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Nel comprare questo libro, mi sono lasciato ingannare dal titolo e dalla quarta di copertina, che recita "in questo romanzo il primo personaggio a entrare in scena è un'astronave immensa e deserta, una cattedrale volante trovata in orbita nella fascia degli asteroidi". Mi è venuto in mente un Alien con i vampiri spaziali e mi è partito il momento "shut up and take my money".
In realtà questo libro è una cacata. E ora vi spiego perché.

Ammetto di avere una fantasia un po' da film action americano s
Jul 29, 2016 Scott rated it did not like it
Shelves: horror
Some time in the not too distant future, astronauts discover a derelict spacecraft and bring three of its dormant occupants back to Earth. Unfortunately, they turn out to be some kind of energy vampires. This premise is fine, but what follows is around 200 pages of bullshit philosophy and pseudoscience rather than a story. I was somewhat aware that Wilson actually believed in this stuff but I didn't expect it to hijack the story so much. This definitely isn't a science fiction novel, and is bare ...more
Oct 10, 2016 Grahambootle rated it did not like it
Although it was written in 1976 it felt like it had been written earlier. I'm not talking about the technology, which was amusing at times, but more the attitude to women, who were always minor secondary characters.

I also found it difficult to believe that the author was actually British, some of the idioms and situations and indeed names felt more like a Simpsons episode based in Britain.

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Colin Henry Wilson was born and raised in Leicester, England, U.K. He left school at 16, worked in factories and various occupations, and read in his spare time. When Wilson was 24, Gollancz published The Outsider (1956) which examines the role of the social 'outsider' in seminal works of various key literary and cultural figures. These include Albert Camus, Jean-Paul Sartre, Ernest Hemingway, Her ...more
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