|James Herbert OBE 1943 - 2013|
There are many authors that make up the horror genre, but by far my favorite is James Herbert. His ability to turn the most ordinary of events into a chilling, sometimes gory plot was magical.
I started with 'The Rats' when I was about 18. Nineteen years later and I just read the latest, 'Ash'. From that first novel, I was hooked. Each story - be it 'Lair', 'Shrine' or 'Portent', Herbert gets your attention from the opening page. His artistry was building that apprehension of the old Hammer Horror films, with a few eerie, blood-soaked moments to tantalize until the climatic ending.
Do I have a favorite novel? So hard to decide. They're all chilling, creepy and disturbing in their own right. Yet it was ''48' that stood out for me. Perhaps because it touched on Hitler and the Occult so there's an essence of truth to the premise of the story; but more than anything else, it was the totally unexpected ending that over ten years after reading, it still remains with me. Herbert's ease of injecting humor and brilliant insight into nature of humans was always spot on and each of his novels always left you wondering 'what if that really happened?'
James Herbert is one of the very few authors in which I have read all their books and liked each one. I've ventured to read his peers, King, Koontz; but none met (in my humble opinion) the eloquence and perfect balance of horror, ordinary life and humor. The writing world has lost a truly gifted author James Herbert OBE, Master of Horror.