The Hellbound Heart by Clive Barker
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Frank Cotton activated the Lemarchand Configuration and was whisked away by the Cenobites to experience "pleasure" no mortal has ever felt. Now, Frank's brother Rory and his wife Julie live in the house where his experiment occurred. Frank's looking to return to the fields we know and the price is blood...
As part of my continuing horror education, I had to give Clive Barker a shot, thus The Hellbound Heart.
This novella is pretty memorable but I wouldn't say I was scared by it. More creeped out than anything. Clive Barker has a pretty twisted imagination. The Cenobites and their idea of pleasure was pretty horrible. I really liked the idea of a wooden puzzle box that opens a gateway to another dimension.
Julie gradually falling under the spell of what was left of Frank was pretty cool. I had a pretty good idea of where the story would go and how it would end after she made contact with Frank but it was a fun, gore-strewn ride.
Aside from the short length, my only gripe with the book would be that Clive Barker's style seemed overly ornate at times.
Three things I learned from The Hellbound Heart:
1. If you find a wooden puzzle box, don't mess with it.
2. If there's a chance extradimensional beings, be sure you masturbate on the floor. It'll help you rebuild your body later.
3. If you go home with a woman you meet in a bar and she wants to have sex in a room devoid of furniture, make sure she doesn't have a knife.
3.5 out of 5 stars.
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