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Tuesday, 27 February 2018

Book Review: Cabal by Clive Barker


After being convinced by his psychiatrist that he is responsible for a whole host of murders, Boone flees to the semi-fantastical Midian, a crypt inhabited by shape-shifting monsters who call themselves the Nightbreed.



“When the sun goes out and there’s only night, we’ll live on the earth. It’ll be ours.”

I only needed to read the first couple of paragraphs of Cabal to be reminded why I have fallen for Barker’s works – his writing is simply incredible. His ability to present horror and gore in such a beautiful way is a unique skill. With Cabal, I was hooked from the very beginning, although there was a bit of a lull in the middle, but thankfully it picked up again to give us a really exciting finale.

In terms of the plot of Cabal, it’s a good one – the Nightbreed are a community of peaceful “monsters” who have moved to Midian as a consequence of the fear they instilled in those who didn’t understand what they were. A group of people or “monsters” who are persecuted for their unconventional lifestyle. It becomes even more poignant when the humans in the story turn out to be more evil and destructive than the actual monsters themselves.

My only real negative about Cabal is that I would have liked more backstory about the Nightbreed – we only really get a taster, and while it certainly whets the appetite, I just want to know MORE. The monsters that we do get to know are intriguing and colourful, and I wish this was a world that Barker delved into more – as far as I’m aware, there is no further expansion of this world. OH and how could I almost forget about Barker’s tendency to write incredibly detailed sex scenes! I was reading one particular scene while on a plane and I was pretty much trying to read it with the book closed as I had a fear of the stranger beside me glancing over to read some bookish porn. AWKWARD. Thanks, Clive! :D

Overall, Cabal is a really solid book, a nice blend of horror and fantasy with a pinch of romance thrown in. Thoroughly enjoyable and now I look forward to watching the movie as I LOVE Craig Sheffer in One Tree Hill!! This one gets 4 stars.

Johann
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