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The Rats [Abridged, Audiobook, Unabridged] [Audio CD]

James Herbert , Steven Pacey
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (314 customer reviews)

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Book Description

9 Aug 2002

It was only when the bones of the first devoured victims were discovered that the true nature and power of these swarming black creatures with their razor-sharp teeth and the taste for human blood began to be realised by a panic-stricken city. For millions of years man and rats had been natural enemies. But now for the first time - suddenly, shockingly, horribly - the balance of power had shifted...

`The effectiveness of the gruesome set pieces and brilliant finale are all its own' Sunday Times


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Product details

  • Audio CD
  • Publisher: Macmillan Digital Audio; Abridged edition edition (9 Aug 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9781405004886
  • ISBN-13: 978-1405004886
  • ASIN: 1405004886
  • Product Dimensions: 14.2 x 12 x 2.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (314 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 714,221 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

James Herbert was not just Britain's number one bestselling writer of chiller fiction, a position he held ever since publication of his first novel, but was also one of our greatest popular novelists. Widely imitated and hugely influential, his twenty-three novels have sold more than fifty-four million copies worldwide, and have been translated into over thirty languages, including Russian and Chinese. In 2010, he was made the Grand Master of Horror by the World Horror Convention and was also awarded an OBE by the Queen for services to literature. His final novel was Ash. James Herbert died in March 2013.

Product Description

From the Back Cover

A special 40th anniversary edition of the classic, bestselling novel that launched James Herbert's career

It was only when the bones of the first devoured victims were discovered that the true nature and power of these swarming black creatures - with their razor sharp teeth and the taste for human blood - began to be realized by a panic-stricken city. For millions of years man and rat had been natural enemies. But now for the first time - suddenly, shockingly, horribly - the balance of power had shifted . . .

'The effectiveness of the gruesome set pieces and brilliant finale are all its own' Sunday Times

--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

About the Author

James Herbert is not just Britain's No. 1 bestselling writer of chiller fiction, a position he has held since publication of his first novel, but is one of our greatest popular novelists, whose books are sold in 33 other languages, including Russian and Chinese. Widely imitated and hugely influential, his twenty novels have sold more than 50 million copies worldwide.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It will gnaw into your mind 15 July 2011
By Jackiesmackie TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
Big black rats that gnaw eat and chew.

The first of the Rats trilogy, I tore through this book in a matter of days. The way it is written is very clever indeed, an easy read that is gripping with the advance of the Rats and the increase in frequency of attacks. No punches are pulled and the writing style is tight and compelling. After reading this you WILL want to read the rest of the series. Lair and Domain bring to the fore a truly apocalyptic series about what life would be like if we were not the dominant species anymore, if we were another creatures food source. Rats are very clever and skilled creatures, adaptable and powerful in packs. When the rats you face are bigger than dogs how quickly do you think you would be overwhelmed? How painful would it be to feel long sharp teeth peeling the skin from your body?

I have enjoyed this book many times. As a reader I will often re-visit a story I've enjoyed and it gives me great pleasure to disappear into the Rats trilogy.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Blast from the past 15 Jan 2012
By Call me Sparky VINE VOICE
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
There was a time was when a book lasted about 200 pages. Kids books were done and dusted in about 100 and only frustrated home counties horse women got to grips with the doorsteps that Jilly Cooper and Jackie Collins turned out.

James Herbert's first novel, would more likely be seen as a novella now: Short and sweet it was a punchy, in-your-face book that scared the proverbial out of me for more than one reason.

Herbert is the product of an East London upbringing. Born at the tail end of WW2, he grew up playing on bomb sites and derelict buildings, wasteland left to ruin. It is these locations that inspired The Rats.

The book deals with a growing number of rat attacks in London. That's a bit obvious really. Starting with the deaths of a vagrant and pest exterminator. Soon the capital is overrun with these deadly carriers of a new plague, whose bite means certain death. We are quickly introduced to Harris, a teacher in East London. The book then begins to follow him through the escalating attacks including one that devastates the school he works in.

For me the trouble is he bases that school on the one he used to attend - St. Aloysius in Highgate. The trouble being I went there. His description of the attack in familiar rooms, corridors and playgrounds is to me truly chilling, especially as I first read the book whilst I was still studying there.

There are subsequent sequels which are good, solid tales but for me it is his first, pacy adventure that holds the reader most - not the flabby written-for-a-film-deal turgid dross that he has produced recently (The Secret of Crickley Hall...Jeez).

Read this. It is a horror story without the unnecessary dressing and so much the better for it.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I want to go on record as saying that James Herbert is one of my favourite authors and the Rats is one of my all time favourite horror novels. It is gritty, gripping, straight to the point and I've never been able to look at a rat since thanks to this horrifying 1974 tale.

I went into my local bookstore yesterday and discovered that they had a copy of the special edition. I took a browse, read Neil Gaiman's introduction. It wasn't anything special, just a sort of antedote about what James Herbert meant to another great writer.

The thing that got me though was that as soon as I turned the page from the introduction, it was Chapter 1. I have read this quite a few times and know for a fact there is meant to be a prologue with this novel. The prologue however is missing from the Special Edition, and while the prologue doesn't really add anything to the story, it was what James Hebert had written and therefore should be part of the book. I know now for a fact that I will not be buying this special edition until the publishers have gone back and included the prologue.

Until then I will be happy to read my own copy which includes James Herbert's full 100% novel. I feel this is a crime to the man who tragically died last year.

The Rats - 5 out of 5
The Rats Special Edition - 1 out of 5
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Still has the Power!! 6 Sep 2010
Format:Paperback
Possible one of the best horror books ever!! Great storyline and gruesome parts for the horror lover. The Book is fast paced and hard to but down. Even though this book has to be nearly 30+ years. Many more current writers should sit down and read this and see how a book is composed, characters built and a plot develops.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pure class 11 Jun 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
After reading The Rats it is easy to see why James Herbert was one of the world's leading horror novelists.
Right from the off you are thrown into a world where the rats have started their attacks which are explained in great detail.
You followers story of Harris the school teacher. Immersed into the horrible underworld of rat infested London you empathise with the characters, willing them on, even those who only play a bit part in the story. From start to finish this novel had me gripped. For his first novel this is an absolute winner, especially at the offer price of 99p.
Will recommend this to all who love a good horror novel.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
When I first read James Herbert's "The Rats" at the ripe old age of 13, I had no idea that the book itself was either Herbert's first book or that it was nearly 40 years old! It doesn't feel like a day over 5 years old to read, that's for damn sure!
This book has everything a spatter-punk horror novel should have: visceral sex; stratospheric levels of violence and the ability to get under your skin with the descriptions of the antagonists and the unbelievable acts they commit.
Herbert influenced the writing styles of a generation of horror authors, such as Richard Laymon; Shaun Hutson; Ramsay Campbell and Graham Masterton. This book is as potent and exhilerating to read now as it was 39 years ago. Buy it; read it; treasure it and thank me for it later! :)
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars enthralled
couldn't put it down, just had to read little bit more each time.
Published 3 days ago by L A Worship
5.0 out of 5 stars The rats. By James herbert
It's a classic ,James Herbert sets up the scene with ease but still give you the reader plenty of room for your imagination to add to each rat attack ,I first read it in my teens... Read more
Published 7 days ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great
Published 7 days ago by R. Ardis
5.0 out of 5 stars Nerve shredding tension.
After reading and enjoying Herbert's The Fog more than any other book I have read I decided to read the next book he wrote and have to say this like The Fog is truly brilliant and... Read more
Published 7 days ago by MS SS
5.0 out of 5 stars Rats rats everywhere.
Fantastic. Has to be one of the best books I ever read. Although purely fiction, you could really imagine such an event. Read more
Published 8 days ago by Jasann
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
One of my favourite Herbert novels ever, his first book that truly creeped me out
Published 8 days ago by Alex B
5.0 out of 5 stars Rats
Very good book captivating really good read easily picked up and enjoyable have read this book ten times over the years and still enjoy it
Published 9 days ago by lisa macdonald
4.0 out of 5 stars Herbert's debut, to be sure, but still gripping
Though I had read one or two of Herbert's other books, and thoroughly enjoyed them - particularly 'The Ghosts of Sleath' - until I spotted this 'special 40th anniversary edition'... Read more
Published 17 days ago by ASwol83
5.0 out of 5 stars the rats....scary stuff
Received this on the day of release...great book by a great author, sadly missed. This is the first James Herbert book I read when I was 11 years old it seems fitting that its the... Read more
Published 18 days ago by tracy hall
5.0 out of 5 stars The rats
I've always loved horror ,my sister told me ,I should read James Herbert ,the best in the world ,she said . Read more
Published 18 days ago by Tony
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