The Secret of Crickley Hall

The Secret of Crickley Hall

James Herbert / Feb 16, 2020

The Secret of Crickley Hall The Caleighs have had a terrible yearThey need time and space while they await the news they dread Gabe has brought his wife Eve and daughters Loren and Cally down to Devon to the peaceful seasi

  • Title: The Secret of Crickley Hall
  • Author: James Herbert
  • ISBN: 9780330411684
  • Page: 266
  • Format: Paperback
  • The Caleighs have had a terrible yearThey need time and space, while they await the news they dread Gabe has brought his wife, Eve, and daughters, Loren and Cally, down to Devon, to the peaceful seaside village of Hollow Bay He can work and Eve and the kids can have some peace and quiet and perhaps they can try, as a family, to come to terms with what s happened to thThe Caleighs have had a terrible yearThey need time and space, while they await the news they dread Gabe has brought his wife, Eve, and daughters, Loren and Cally, down to Devon, to the peaceful seaside village of Hollow Bay He can work and Eve and the kids can have some peace and quiet and perhaps they can try, as a family, to come to terms with what s happened to themCrickley Hall is an unusually large house on the outskirts of the village at the bottom of Devil s Cleave, a massive tree lined gorge the stuff of local legend A river flows past the front garden It s perfect for themif a bit gloomy And Chester, their dog, seems really spooked at being away from home And old houses do make sounds And it s constantly cold And even though they shut the cellar door every night, it s always open again in morningThe Secret of Crickley Hall is James Herbert s finest novel to date It explores the darker, obtuse territories of evil and the supernatural With brooding menace and rising tension, he masterfully and relentlessly draws the reader through to the ultimate revelation one that will stay to chill the mind long after the book has been laid aside.

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    About "James Herbert"

      • James Herbert

        James Herbert was Britain s number one bestselling writer a position he held ever since publication of his first novel and one of the world s top writers of thriller horror fiction He was one of our greatest popular novelists, whose books are sold in thirty three other languages, including Russian and Chinese Widely imitated and hugely influential, his 19 novels have sold than 42 million copies worldwide As an author he produced some of the most powerful horror fiction of the past decade With a skillful blend of horror and thriller fiction, he explored the shaded territories of evil, evoking a sense of brooding menace and rising tension He relentlessly draws the reader through the story s ultimate revelation one that will stay to chill the mind long after the book has been laid aside His bestsellers, THE MAGIC COTTAGE, HAUNTED, SEPULCHRE, and CREED, enhanced his reputation as a writer of depth and originality His novels THE FOG, THE DARK, and THE SURVIVOR have been hailed as classics of the genre.


    1. It’s almost Halloween as I write so I’m in the mood for some creepy read. If you are ever in the mood for horror fiction and you have never read anything by James Herbert you have been outrageously remiss. In the 70s and 80s James Herbert was King, practically Stephen King as teens and horror fans were reading his books all over the place (in the UK where I was residing any way I have no idea about Herbertism in other countries). His most widely known book The Rats was published in 1974 it w [...]

    2. I'M UPSET! *deep breaths*One of the things that ticks me off – IS FALSE ADVERTISING!I have been conned and I’m furious! Well to be precised, Ben and I have been conned and going by his status updates – as you witnessed, F bombs were practically on every progress updates, he wasn’t too impresses either.Let’s analyze. The synopsis said:The Secret of Crickley Hall is a new take on the classic ghost story in the same way that his bestseller Once was a new take on the classic fairy tale. Th [...]

    3. I have read most if nota all of James Herbert's books and I think he has written some excellent novels (Fluke, Portent, '48) and some that I wasn't so keen on (notably The Spear)However with The Secret Of Crickley Hall I think he has done a fantastic job. I would say this just edges Portent from my top 3 Herbert booksThe characterisations are wonderful the plot is superb and the build up is one of his best.I really used to enjoy reading Denis Wheatley books when I was younger, one thing I loved [...]

    4. This goes on the 'could-not-finish' shelf. What a stinker. I was thoroughly impatient with the character descriptions and unnecessary explanations through dialogue, e.g the mother explaining to the kindly old gardener why their youngest daughter is nicknamed "Callie"---I can almost picture the gardener nodding with polite disinterest. As an American, I was really irritated with the author feeling it necessary to include, during the mother's interior monologue, the information that her American h [...]

    5. One of the best ghost stories that I've ever read. Herbert does a wonderful job with characters, history, and atmosphere. An excellent novel.

    6. Mind the spoilers!Hmmm. I think my overall impression of this book is that it was an interesting and compelling read, but just too long and repetitive, and at some points completely nonsensical.I love a good ghost story and this one started off very well, with the Caleigh family heading to the very creepy Crickley Hall in Devon to get away from painful memories of their missing son on the first anniversary of his disappearance. It's the classic horror set up: main characters move to an unfamilia [...]

    7. Well, what can I say, I bought this book on the 20th, and have just finished it today, 3 days later, despite the books 633 pages.Where do I start? Just please, if you enjoy an amazing plot, twists that left me literally gasping, (And I'm not one to over react) biting my nails, and on the verge of tears at points, then pick up The Secret of Crickely Hall.Other reviews deterred me from reading this, and I picked it up with half heartedness, and the intention of dropping it after the first 80 pages [...]

    8. This book seriously has me stuck. I’m totally split about whether to rate it two or three stars. I could just get a life and not care about it either way, but this is me we’re talking about. So here goes an in-depth discussion with myself which I really haven't the time to indulge in. Shit. I hated this book. Aside from the suicide letter I wrote my parents some months ago, it was probably the most disappointing thing I've read in a long time. (The former being disappointing because obviousl [...]

    9. What's wrong with Crickley Hall? The cellar door won't stay shut. There are strange noises coming from the closet. The dog hates the place. Be very afraid, run away now - from this novel.Oy, what a stinker. It has the bones of a good story - plotty enough that I had to severely edit the synopsis to be accepted by my book database - but the story is badly told and very badly edited. There is no real character development, although there are character back stories that take up valuable pages and a [...]

    10. I'll admit to skimming through parts of this book. Mostly, the parts that repeated, and repeatedd repeated. My Lord, the ENDLESS repetition. First one person tells the story, then another, then we get a flashback memory of the story, then a summary and then yet another person tells the same story again. Sigh.No mystery here, no scares or creepy scenes (though plenty were meant to be)- the most disturbing parts (aside from the poorly executed and, yes, repetitious, "Americanisms") were the descri [...]

    11. I think the best-kept secret of Crickley Hall is the fact that absolutely nothing exciting happens there… Which is a shame, because I am a huge James Herbert fan, and have just finished reading Others (review to come), which was absolutely brilliant. But this book felt like a shade of his other ghost stories, something that looks at first glance like it should be perfectly terrifying, but which soon grows stale and familiar and dull. It’s like that moment when you wake up at night and see th [...]

    12. James Herbert, who passed away last year, has long been one of the most popular and influential horror writers since he first published The Rats in the late 70's. To many in the UK, he's their Stephen King, but Herbert is all his own, and for the uninitiated, you should read him, period.The Secret of Crickley Hall is a classic haunted house tale, ranks right up there with the modern classics, such as The Haunting of Hill House, Hell House, The Shining, and Ghost Story. While the book is big and [...]

    13. Horror seems to be James Herbert's talent, from his creepy little novel The Rats to this one, which, instead of featuring an apocalypse-like scenario with animals, instead focuses on a more eerie and sinister plot. In The Secret of Crickley Hall, the ghosts of wrongfully-treated children are the center of the plot.

    14. James Herbert is held with a great deal of respect in the UK: there’s quite a few horror readers out there who were weaned on the author’s The Rats(1974) and The Fog (1975) from the 1970’s.Since then (and twenty odd books later) Herbert’s current reputation is, well odd. There’s been a few books that readers haven’t been too favourable of, and it seems that Herbert’s reputation as ‘Britain’s answer to Stephen King’ has not turned out the way many predicted it would. He sells [...]

    15. This is one of James Herbert's best novels of recent years. It's a traditional spooky house ghost story that takes place over the course of a week in Devon as a family move to a rented house to recuperate from a tragedy that overwhelmed them. The first sign that something is wrong is when the dog keeps running away. It's truly scary at points and doesn't have some of the gore and violence which marked Herbert's earlier horror fiction, which probably would make it appeal to a broader readership.

    16. I try to cull my TBR list regularly. Okay, fine, regularly-ish. I'm never as ruthless with my own lists as I am with, say, books in the library that need to be weeded. If it smells like a troll died in it or the spine is lettered in white-out pen, it needs to go. Pronto. But my booklist? What if I take something off and then I forget about it and it turns out it would have been one of my favorite books ever had I read it? I'm not going to use that idiotic acronym, but yes: it's a form of the fea [...]

    17. This novel ticks all the traditional ghost story boxes - a creepy old house in the middle of nowhere, cut off from the mainland by a river, doors that won't stay closed, inexplicable pools of water in the the hall, mysterious bangs in the middle of the night, and a decades old mystery which is the cause of the hauntings. It should work, but I'm afraid I found this book dreadfully verbose. Herbert isn't content to tell you something once. The same information is provided over and over again which [...]

    18. 633 pages in less than 2 days is a new record for me. Whilst I couldn't wait for the next chapter every time, I did begin to feel sad that it was nearly finished around page 530.Herbert is currently my favourite author as his pace is sharp and intriging from the beginning right to the last few pages. I did suss out some of the twists and turns and I LOVED the backdrop for this book. Having spent a week in Somerset and crossing over the border into North Devon last week, this is evidently based o [...]

    19. The Secret Of Crickley Hall is a good, old-fashioned ghost story. To be honest, it reads like a checklist of every ghost story/haunted house cliché in the history of horror fiction but damnit if I didn't enjoy the HELL out of it!You could tear this book to shreds with a long list of all the reasons it's not really very good and I wouldn't be able to argue with you. It's genuinely creepy and deeply disturbing, despite that, and the part of me that longs to be sitting around a campfire at night w [...]

    20. I would have given this five stars had it not been sooo very long, and repetitive in some parts.But, other than that, a good modern horror story with some neat little twists and surprises, with a few sprinkles of more visceral horror. And a slightly weepy ending. I've read pretty much everything else Herbert had written, and somehow this one passed me by, so I'm glad I got around to it.

    21. brilliant read, the best James Herbert book I've read so far, for any Stephen king fans like myself this reads like a king novel. Its a fairly hefty book but so well paced you just breeze through it, not any slow boring parts in here at all, it keeps you gripped from first page to the last.

    22. I found this on the shelves of our rented holiday flat. It was every bit as good as you'd expect a paperback left on the shelf of your holiday flat to be.

    23. An English country house is haunted by restless spirits lost during flooding during WWII. In modern times, in moves a family trying to escape another tragedy. Then the two hauntings collideI had two issues here. One, it's not the book for me, but for the kind of folks who actually insist ghosts are real and there really is a mysterious purpose to all our lives. This is essentially the story of a believer who gets to modestly avoid telling a skeptic "I told you so," and, well, I'm a skeptic. If y [...]

    24. I abandoned this book after 80 pages. There was a lot I liked about it, but some of the characters' actions seemed really contrived. I'm going to wtite some details about what I didn't like. I don't think they constitute plot spoilers, since I only got to page 80 of a 600 page book, but anyone who hasn't read the book might want to stop reading now.The first problem was with Crickley Hall. Why did Gabe rent it? He didn't seem to like it much and it was much bigger than they needed. It just didn' [...]

    25. Staggered by how much I enjoyed this picked it up as a case of nostalgia, having been a big fan of herbert in my teens.This is superbly paced - not easy on a 600+ book and the tension really mounts well Good characterisation but maybe not as scary as you would expect from the premise.It is a classic haunted house take. Crickley hall had a secret during the war, when the guardian went mad and killed his 10 charges during the night of a great storm.Back in modern times a family who have faced thei [...]

    26. This book started out good. A grieving family (Gabe and Eve, with daughters Loren and Cally) moves into Crickley Hall, both to be closer to Gabe (the father)'s work, and to give themselves some space during the anniversary of the loss of their son, Cam, who disappeared a year prior. But Crickley Hall has other plans. There are bumps in the night, and strange visions. Something evil is present here.Then the author totally threw in the towel. The last half of the book was so much exposition, so mu [...]

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