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Publisher's Summary

The Books of Blood combine the ordinary with the extraordinary while radiating the eroticism that has become Barker's signature. Weaving tales of the everyday world transformed into an unrecognizable place, where reason no longer exists and logic ceases to explain the workings of the universe, Clive Barker provides the stuff of nightmares in packages too tantalizing to resist.

Never one to shy away from the unimaginable or the unspeakable, Clive Barker breathes life into our deepest, darkest nightmares, creating visions that are at once terrifying, tender, and witty.

The Books of Blood confirm what horror fans everywhere have known for a long time: We will be hearing from Clive Barker for many years to come. This first volume contains the short stories : "The Book of Blood," "The Midnight Meat Train," "The Yattering and Jack," "Sex, Death, and Starshine," and "In the Hills, the Cities."

©1984 Seraphim Films (P)2013 David N. Wilson

What listeners say about The Books of Blood, Volume 1

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Everyone's a Book of Blood

What did you love best about The Books of Blood, Volume 1?

I've been reading Barker and collecting his stuff since the late 80s. He's the great imaginer of our time. These first stories, raw, powerful and shocking at the time ushered in a brand new understanding of the politics of horror. No longer were we talking about the outside threats, the aliens, the monsters, we were facing our own inner demons, we were the monsters, and Clive Barker really understood that long before the rest. The human monster is the most frightening of all. And these stories, from the Midnight Meat Train rattling beneath NYC to the unhappy demonic Yattering trying to do the job he hates, the visceral nature of Pigs Blood Blues, Sex Death and Starshine... brilliant... but truly the gem, the story that assures Barker's legacy is that final one, In the Hills, The Cities... which is quite possibly one of the best stories of fantasy-horror ever written.

20 people found this helpful

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WICKED !

Mr Barker has delivered yet again another masterpiece of Science fiction/ Horror.
Books of Blood #1 was great.
can't wait to read the rest.

4 people found this helpful

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Pure brilliance!

The stories themselves are interesting and emotionally touching. Of course we get the Clive Barker mood with it's suspence, horror and gore. Anyone who calls himself/herself a horror fan must experience "The Books Of Blood".

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I mostly liked these... I LOVED the last story!

Clive Barker delivers a solid anthology.

The voice actors are fantastic!

“In the Hills, the Cities” is unlike anything I've ever imagined... worth it for this story, alone!

2 people found this helpful

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Throw Ration and Reason out the window!

Any additional comments?

After listening to these stories I went on an aggressive search for everything that Clive Barker had released through Audible. He is a Master Story teller. I still have his stories in my head! Life is so full of the everyday... Barker knows how to take you away. But who knows where he is going to take you. AWESOME.

5 people found this helpful

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Finally!

What made the experience of listening to The Books of Blood, Volume 1 the most enjoyable?

Some of Barker's best early stories are in this volume. The narrators are strong and the tales still pack a great punch. The introductions mentioned in the description, however, are nowhere to be found. Just the stories.

Collecting the first three Books of Blood into one full audio book may have been a better idea, but it's a fair price for a half-dozen stories of this quality. "Midnight Meat Train" is a classic, but the final story in V1 is something truly special.

6 people found this helpful

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Good Books except In the hills, the cities

Overall the books within this book were interesting and written well. The last book In the Hills, the Cities has to be the dumbest book I’ve listened to. I don’t know if the book was symbolic or just used metaphors but it was dumb and super hard to get through. I can usually make my way through even the worst of stories but this one topped them all and I just wanted it to end.

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Barker at his best

There’s a good reason why this collection is on a lot of peoples must read horror list
With an excellent list of narrators I highly recommend going with the audiobook version

I received a free review audiobook and voluntarily left this review

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PHENOMENAL


In the Hills, the Cities is one of the best short stories ever written. Obviously in my opinion.

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Riveting and Bone-Chilling!

Quite possibly the scariest audiobook I have ever listened too! From the author who brought us the "Hell Raiser" movies, I should have known this would be a riveting, bone-chilling experience. No one can write horror like Clive Barker with his twists and turns, and mind-bending exploits into the dark side of humanity. This collection of short stories is certainly not for the faint of heart! I'm not typically a fan of a lot of "gore" but with Barker's stories it's inevitable and it works fantastically to his advantage. Each of these stories left me in absolute awe....and yes, rather afraid of the dark. I quickly learned that these were not the stories to listen to before going to bed. But, they were incredible nonetheless. The narrators all performed outstandingly and to choose one favorite over the others would be a grave injustice. Each narrator had a unique, eerie quality that only enhanced Barker's writing and brought it to life. My initial impression was that the narration had a "Twilight Zone" appeal to it but then quickly stepped beyond and into something much darker and much more sinister. As an audiobook, this was an astounding performance of stories that I would highly recommend to fans of Horror Fiction, and particularly fans of Clive Barker. Very well done....FIVE stars!

5 people found this helpful

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  • Jonathan Mills
  • 09-23-13

Visceral, grisly horror classic

I first read the Books of Blood at 18, and was immediately struck by Clive Barker's incredible talent and imagination for the horror genre. Many of the stories, about an hour or so in length, have since become classics, and a few have been adapted for film - The Forbidden, the basis of the Candyman franchise, and the Midnight Meat Train for example. Even knowing what to expect I was struck again and again while listening to the dizzying breadth of Barker's imagination - the Dante-esque visions of hell, the faustian comedy of the Yattering and Jack, the giants made of men - and how well it integrates with the realities of everyday experience.
The performance is very good - none of the narrators give anything less than an excellent reading, and the narration never impacts negatively on the story, which is more or less all I look for in a performance. I was very pleased with this.
It's a must listen for horror fans. Just be warned, the stories often involve extremely graphic violent and sexual content. Hopefully the other 4 books in the collection will join volumes 1 and 2 on Audible shortly.

8 people found this helpful

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  • Scott Rudd
  • 06-03-15

Classic Clive Barker

A good collection of short stories. I purchased this collection a good few years ago as a paper book. Loving hearing them again.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Darren - UK
  • 04-19-14

Essential reading for all fans of horror.

If you could sum up The Books of Blood, Volume 1 in three words, what would they be?

Chilling depraved and intense.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Yes i my blood curdled.

Any additional comments?

A very good book full of wild imagination and terrifying imagery. Clive Barker is a master of horror i had the paperback of this book and i love the cross over to audio book i will definitely be buying the other books in this series.

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  • Tim
  • 12-08-13

Great

If you could sum up The Books of Blood, Volume 1 in three words, what would they be?

Unique, grotesque, marvellous.

What does the narrators bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

The narrator brings an eerie quality to the stories which you wouldn't experience if you had only read the book. This is especially evident when voicing the demon in "The Yattering and Jack"

Any additional comments?

I loved the surreal premise and unusual quality of the stories. Each one is completely different from the one that came before.

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  • Rory Mckane
  • 07-08-15

My first Barker book, and a good start!

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes, its a good listen, and the narrators put in a great performance which really helps animate the stories.

What other book might you compare The Books of Blood, Volume 1 to, and why?

I'm fairly new to horror fiction, so it would have to be Nightmares and Dreamscapes by Stephen King, although some of the imagery in Barker's stuff is expectedly more otherworldly!

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The last few minutes of 'The Yattering and Jack' , and the conclusion to 'The Midnight Meat Train'

2 people found this helpful

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  • Anna
  • 01-02-21

great

really starting to love this author best to listen to with head phones tho as theres quiet a lot of sexy bits haha

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  • barry sharpe
  • 11-24-19

Boring

👎 not to my taste, went on to long not enough shocks etc two stars

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  • Sarah Evans-Timms
  • 11-09-19

Great Stories - Shame about the Narration

Fabulous horror stories - Clive Barker is a real master storyteller. The concept of the Books of Blood is set up in the first story, then the following anthology displays the author's skill and range of imagination; from the NYC subway in Midnight Meat Train, to the very British trials and tribulations in the Yattering and Jack.


I felt that some narrators let the tales down by either over exaggerated depth of feeling and expression, or badly chosen "voices" for some of the characters. It's mildly annoying - not enough to prevent me from purchasing more in the series, but annoying enough that if I could never hear those narrators again, I would pay more to do so!

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  • Max
  • 03-29-19

chilling tales from Clive Barker

sex,blood and fantasy collide in these chilling tales from Clive Barker, Barker continues to be one of the most visceraly descriptive writers I have read, my favourite from this collection had to be "up in the hills the cities" and if you're like me you'll find yourself thinking about these stories for days

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  • Paul G.
  • 01-21-19

Superb

Superb audio book from the brilliant mind of Clive Barker. Definitely worth giving it 5/5