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The Shrine

3.79  ·  Rating details ·  2,290 Ratings  ·  68 Reviews
Alice, a deaf-mute, has a vision of a lady in white who says she is the immaculate conception. Suddenly Alice can speak, hear, and perform miracles. The visitation site becomes a shrine. But Alice is no longer the guileless child overwhelmed by her new saintliness. She has become the agent of something corrupt, a vile force centuries old.
Paperback, 534 pages
Published April 1st 1999 by Pan Books (first published 1983)
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Jun 02, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ok so my horror revival continues - this book (along with the other works of James Herbert) was the next stop after exhausting Stephen Kings prodigious publication list. This story to me at the time was totally different to what I was used to. Where Stephen King concentrated on characterisation and how they dealt with terrible and impossibly situations both physically and ethereal - James Herbert took his characters and put them through hell with all the blood and guts he could find.
** At this
Grady Hendrix
Catholic church tries to discover if little girl performing miracles is a sign that God loves them or a trick of the Devil. Which do you think? Scary nuns, mass zombie attacks, and a LOT of scenes of people sitting around in rooms talking. But that Tom Hallman cover is so good it makes up for a lot of sins.
Apr 25, 2015 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
The book is published by New English Library in the UK.
Shawn Thornton
Apr 21, 2014 rated it really liked it
Another great novel from the the late great James Herbert. Not my favourite one that I have read, but there was enough darkness and good fun silliness to keep me thoroughly entertained from start to finish.
Feb 25, 2010 rated it liked it
what an evil little inocent bitch
Jul 15, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, horror
A solid Herbert effort, 3.5 stars. Good plot, moves at a good clip, and the characters are memorable. The reporter Fenn was my favorite. Sure, this is a lousy review, but I am tired and not in the mood for anything fancy. If you like Herbert, you will like this. Better than some of the clunkers he did like 'Moon,' but not at the level of his classics like 'Once' and the 'Rats' series, which I still need to finish reading. One thing I like-no really happy ending. Think I will try to find a copy o ...more
Nov 16, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 17, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read this book about seventeen years ago by mistake (I found it in the hotel bedroom on holiday) and really enjoyed reading this creepy bit of writing can still the children singing (lord of the dance)

And I am sure I read a part in this book and a cat was suckling on the girls third nipple did I read this correctly?

I have reread it over this weekend and it's as creepy but this time around I've realised how badly the ending is written, seemed sort of rushed. (but I still give 5*)
This was an OK read. Not one of my favorite Herbert books though..

It just seem to.. drag on a bit. It started well, and the last quarter was good, but the middle bit just seemed to last ages, and I'm not quite sure why.

I still like Herbert as an author though, and I will definitely be reading more of his books!
If you are new to Herbert I don't think I would start with this book, he has written a lot of books better then this one in my opinion!
Jan 13, 2014 rated it did not like it
Shelves: read-2015
I picked this us a comfort reads. one of those reads where you know the author and thier style so well that yours sure you will cruise on through enjoyably. I didnt get that.

Unlike Herbert's usual story telling this was incredibly slow and to be honest terribly flat.

The plot seems to build up, but to what i can't tell you?

I'm left feeling like i wasted my time giving this a go.....
Gail Scott
Read this book 1st time aged 13. Have read it about 4-5 since though not in the past 5 yrs. Have read quite a few new books recently so craved a golden oldie. only in a couple of chapters but already enjoying the comfort of a much loved favorite author of mine.
Jan 14, 2017 rated it liked it
My least favourite James Herbert book so far, but it was still a good book nonetheless
Keith Larkworthy
Feb 27, 2014 rated it liked it
A good chiller. Not a classic but kept me reading right up to the ending which was similar to the conclusion of The Dark.
Pas le meilleur de James Herbert, loin s'en faut.
Sridhar Babu
Mar 10, 2015 rated it really liked it
James Herbert..

Alice Pagett, Molly Pagett, Finn Gerry, Father Hagen, Delgard, Sue, Ben, Bishop Caines, George Southworth and others...

St.Joseph Church in Banfield village ..England..


St.Joseph Church in Banfield gets country/world wide attention... Pilgrims are flowing into the small village for getting cured ..for getting the Blessing of a Little Saint called Alice Pagett. The reason is this little girl Alice, daughter of Molly Pagett and Le
Chris Jay
Jul 23, 2012 rated it it was ok
The Shrine

I could not wait to start reading this book, following the amazing book, (my enjoyment reflected in the long praising review) of The Secret of Crickley Hall . Although, I was rather disappointed. In fact, I could say that I was very disappointed in this book, which breaks my heart as I like James Herbert. The story is very heavily based around the catholic church, and if you are interested in religion, then this story is going to be one you will enjoy. I am not really that religious
David Roberts
Feb 17, 2014 rated it really liked it
I am reviewing the horror novel Shrine by James Herbert which is a very good book which I bought from a car boot sale. The plot is a young girl who is a deaf mute recovers in what is apparently a miracle on land adjacent to a church and there are a string of other apparent miracles. The church initially thinks it's a miracle and decides to buy the land. The young girl claims to have seen the Virgin Mary as well. What they don't realise is in the 16th century people were put to death on the non c ...more
Sep 08, 2012 rated it liked it
Creepy read but very disappointing ending.

Shrine is a nice, creepy and well written read but I found the pacing excruciatingly slow in the latter stages of the book because it's a bit predictable and the story took a while to catch up to my predictions. Nothing was ever really a surprise. But this is an old book, maybe I'd be more suprised if I read this when it was first published, maybe all other books borowed their ideas from this one. But if you're an avid reader or watcher of film/tv, you c
Oct 21, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A reporter almost hit a little girl with his car while he was crossing a small town at night. After that he starts to run after the little creature, not sure if he saw a ghost or a real person. She crosses a graveyard near a small church and get lost of his sights When he sees her again, the girl is neel infront of an ugly dead tree, smiling and all of the sudden she said, "She is beautiful!"
What did the girl see? The mistery is just begining. When Fenn takes the girl to the church, he learn fro
May 06, 2012 rated it it was ok
It certainly was a good enough suspense story, though quite a drag to read at times. The overly descriptive paragraphs were at first a wonder (to someone like me who can't write descriptions that well), then ultimately became a bore and a hindrance as they seemed to slow down the story's progress. I understand the need to instill a gloomy setting, thus the numerous references to gray, bleak afternoons and cold, bitter winds, but sometimes it just feels a little over the top. (SPOILER) I liked th ...more
Jan 10, 2012 rated it liked it
I'm a big fan of James Herbert's stories so enjoyed this book a lot - but it wasn't one of his best.
The story had a brilliant start and despite their character flaws the main characters are likable and interesting. The novel was easy to read and storyline(s) easy to follow, with enough tension/suspense to keep it interesting. I was a bit bored in the the middle of the book - hence taking me so long to finish it - but the story picked up again at the end. There wasn't enough from Alice's perspect
Aug 14, 2012 rated it really liked it
For the lovers of the occult James Herbert's "THE SHRINE" is a gripping read from the first page to the very last. If you loved THE OMEN or THE EXORCIST,this book is similar in regards to story but it delves into the psyche of the non believer and the faithful and as with all of Herbert's books gives us a jolt of the truly frightening.It is the story of a young girl who stumbles upon a field and its sole tree only to be transfixed by the vision of a woman in white...what follows is a town thrown ...more
Susan Tan
Aug 12, 2011 rated it liked it
About a deaf-mute child who claims to have seen a vision of Mother Mary, miraculously cured, and cures others. A tale about evil masquerading as good.

In its core, an exploration Roman Catholicism; poses some interesting questions about the religion, its icons, and faith. Pace : saunters along for three quarts of the book with short, but rewarding sprints for the tenacious reader. Mildly scary.

Whilst the author is lauded as "UK's Stephen King," ardent readers of Steve may find this book as a li
Jul 09, 2012 rated it really liked it
Another very good book by James Herbert. If I was introducing someone to Herbert, it probably wouldnt be one of the ones I would 1st point them towards, but to fans of the man, it's a must read

Well paced, thought provoking and managing to deftly leave enough questions unanswered to let your imagination work, whilst answering enough to stop frustration, it fulfills all the aims I can see the author set out to accomplish
Kerry Lloyd
Feb 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was totally out of my comfort zone, but it was really gripping, Couldn't put it down. Had to keep reading it to see what happened...especially with the photographer his character has so many twits and turns. Little Alice's character was so gripping the mystery surrounding her especially when the sister found the cat suckling on her third nipple. I will definitely be reading more of his books. Highly recommended.
Rodrigo Marinho
Aug 08, 2016 rated it it was amazing
As always, great concept.

The story behind this book is quite intriguing and, at times, incredibly suspenseful.

Such a shame that Mr. Herbert always had trouble composing his characters and setting a truly masterful ending.

James Herbert was always a fan of placing ordinary people under extraordinary circumstances. But I feel he was never really able top create such setting in a reliable/credible way.

Still, "Shrine" is one of my favourites from him.
Nov 27, 2013 rated it liked it
I enjoyed this book because it was written well more than the plot(s). I felt there was too much going on, too many insights into characters lives - some of them not important to the story at all. Some parts really dragged for me, as well. Over all a good read, a bit spooky & odd at time but I mainly felt it was a bit of a let down...
I liked it but, it's not as good The Magic Cottage!!
Jun 30, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shrine was James Herbert's biggest novel to date at the time is was first published,and I think it showed in parts as it laboured a bit.Shrine does get better as it develops.Shrine is a far cry from the style of hit you where you live horror of James Herbert's early novels,the rats,the fog,etc but a very good tale of the occult and demonic possession,when it does get going.
Rolaka Ola Ri
Aug 16, 2016 rated it liked it
Jedno wiem na pewno, "Święte miejsce" to naprawdę dobra książka, która spełnia się idealnie w swoim gatunku. Jednak najbardziej z tego wszystkiego nie podobała mi się masakry, brutalności czy seksu, ale właśnie fragmenty, w których autor ukazuje reakcje społeczeństwa, mediów i samego Kościoła na zjawisko, zwane cudem. Ja polecam!
Chris Harvey
May 31, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great read (if slightly slow, and perhaps theologically questionable in places (but that's good old "artistic licence" for you). Herbert at his best, and refreshing to read a "horror" novel in a Catholic milieu, and one of true Faith, albeit "warts 'n' all"... (any more would reveal "spoilers")... [note to Goodreads: It's just "SHRINE". There is no "The"]
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James Herbert was Britain's number one bestselling writer (a position he held ever since publication of his first novel) and one of the world's top writers of thriller/horror fiction.

He was one of our greatest popular novelists, whose books are sold in thirty-three other languages, including Russian and Chinese. Widely imitated and hugely influential, his 19 novels have sold more than 42 million
More about James Herbert...

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