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The Spear Paperback – November 1, 2012

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About the Author

James Herbert is an author of chilling fiction; his works include FlukeNobody True, OnceOthers, Portent, and The Rats. His more than 20 novels have sold more than 48 million copies worldwide, and are available in 33 languages. In 2010 he was awarded The World Horror Convention Grand Master Award.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 314 pages
  • Publisher: Pan Macmillan; Reprint edition (November 1, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0330522639
  • ISBN-13: 978-0330522632
  • Product Dimensions: 7.7 x 5.1 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,774,431 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Scott E. Amundsen on October 16, 2013
Format: Paperback
Horror writers have been using Nazi Germany as a jumping-off point for decades; such illustrious works as Ira Levin's THE BOYS FROM BRAZIL and James Herbert's contemporary Ramsey Campbell's THE PARASITE have resulted from such forays into the horror that was Hitler's Reich. So it is only natural that James Herbert would wade into the same waters, and the result is THE SPEAR, an intense, moody, creepy novel that stands proudly beside all other efforts in the genre.

Unlike most of Herbert's previous efforts, he does not leap on the reader and begin assaulting him with horror. THE SPEAR is slightly more conventional in that Herbert takes the time to set the scene.

London, 1978. Harry Steadman, a former agent for Mossad, is seen entering the private investigation firm he has formed in an effort to live a normal life. His past is filled with atrocities that he wants nothing so much as to forget and put permanently behind him. But it is not to be; a Mossad agent appears in his office, demanding his help once again. Steadman tries to refuse, but the man blackmails him into agreeing to his request.

Again, unlike Herbert's previous work, this one is not quite linear; the plot has twists and turns, and it is not long before we learn that what is going on, and what Steadman has got himself embroiled in, is a hideous attempt to revive Nazism by literally bringing Heinrich Himmler back to life. I won't say how; you'll have to read it for yourself.

THE SPEAR is more plot-heavy than most of Herbert's previous work; while novels like THE RATS and THE FOG have plenty going on, the things that happen are mostly horrific events connected by a single force but otherwise work as set pieces.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By David Group on July 10, 2003
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I expected to be thrilled by this novel about neo-Nazis and their attempts to gain power using the spear that pierced the side of Christ, but it was an effort to work my way through this novel. I believe it's focus is too narrow-- it's missing a sense of international intrigue that you would get from a good spy novel, or a sense of awe that you would get from a novel that knows something about the occult. In short, it needed to have opened up a bit more, to have a more global perspective on what are basically earth-shaking events. It doesn't help that some of the action scenes are a bit awkward, either. An adequate time-killer, nothing more.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By cdhzielk@tpgi.com.au on February 15, 1998
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I used to always read Stephen King novels, my father suggested this book when the library had run out of new Stephen King books for me to read. The Spear was excellent, I rate it second only to The Eye of the Dragon by Stepehn King, which is nearly the best damn book I have ever read. The Spear is about Adolf Hitler, Lenin and other German figures. It was so long since I read it, it is hard to remember, I want to read it again. A really good book can never be boring, no matter how many times you read it. I live in the country and it is hard to find new books, so I end up reading the ones that I have a few times over. It is amazing how much you miss, little hints in the story that make it all the more interesting. You really get to know the characters.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 12, 1998
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is really a wild book. It includes the Mossad, neonazis (including, believe it or not, Heinrich Himmler!) and a heavy, really heavy dose of occultism. As usual for (the early) Herbert, the main part of the book consists of action-scenes which are not that exciting but at least keep the book moving at a fast pace. The book isn't really bad but has a "cheap" feeling. So, you will not really regret reading this book. On the other hand, you will not regret skipping it, either. Review by Oliver Naujoks, Marburg/Germany.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Chadwick H. Saxelid on February 26, 2002
Format: Hardcover
James Bond meets The Exorcist? So it seems in this typically blood soaked good versus evil story revolving around Neo-Nazi Occultists attempting to literally resurrect the leaders of the Third Reich. More gruesome fun from James Herbert that won't displease his fans, of which I am one.
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Format: Paperback
THE SPEAR by James Herbert

Review by Nickolas Cook

When Herbert is on, he's one of the best horror writers in the world. And I'm not just saying that. For anyone who's ever read "The Rats", "The Fog", or "The Dark" can tell you he writes splatter horror like no one else in the business. But he has been known to write a quieter horror as well, as evidenced by such books as "The Magic Cottage" and "Fluke". "The Spear" falls into that quieter category, as he tells the story of Harry Steadman, ex agent for Mossad living in London and working as a private investigator. When he's asked to find a missing Mossad agent for his old spy fraternity, he refuses, tired of the violence of his old life. But his partner is tortured and killed at his front step and he makes it his business to find and destroy the people responsible. What he doesn't bargain for is the desperate depths that his old Nazi enemies have sunk to regain world power.

"The Spear" plays more as a spy novel than a horror novel, and with that caveat having been said, fear not...there are moments of horror. For Herbert has attempted one of the few true mummy novels in horror. There are only a few of them around, and most were written long before this one. He does an admirable job of working the Nazi angle into his tale, and if nothing else "The Spear" makes for one heck of a rousing action story. But the horror isn't going to come as a surprise to anyone who's actually reading the book. There are plenty of hints of what's to come, as we learn how Heinrich Himmler never actually died and the body identified as his was only someone pretending to be him to save the last power circle of Nazi masters from the righteous fury of the conquering armies.
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