The Damnation Game by Clive Barker

The Damnation Game, Clive Barker, 1985

My favorite quote: “Hell is reimagined by each generation. Its terrain is surveyed for absurdities and remade in a fresher mold; its terrors are scrutinized and, if necessary, reinvented to suit the current climate of atrocity; its architecture is redesigned to appall the eye of the modern damned.”

Notable characters: Marty Strauss, ex-con and bodyguard to Mr. Whitehead; Mr. Whitehead, a rich eccentric; Carys, Whitehead’s daughter; Mamoulian, a devilish man with mysterious powers

Most memorable scene: Mamoulian (kind of) raising the dead

Greatest strengths: The world-building here is absolutely outstanding

Standout achievements: Its dark, morbid eroticism is paralleled only by the dark morbid eroticism of other Clive Barker books

Fun Facts: This was Clive Barker’s first full-length novel

Other media: N/A

What it taught me: From Clive Barker, and this book in particular, I learned power of using beautiful language to describe horrific things — something no one does it better than Mr. Barker

How it inspired me: The opening scene — the thief making his way across the city — was the inspiration for my poem, Warlords and Thieves, in The Book of Strange Persuasions

Additional thoughts: Love him or hate him, I will always admire the integrity of Barker’s work. No one else could write the books he’s written. No one. And that’s a surprisingly unique quality in this field 

Haunt me:

Published by Alistair Cross

Alistair Cross grew up on horror novels and scary movies, and by the age of eight, began writing his own stories. First published in 2012, he has since co-authored The Cliffhouse Haunting and Mother with Tamara Thorne and is working on several other projects. His debut solo novel, The Crimson Corset, was an Amazon bestseller. The Black Wasp, book 3 in The Vampires of Crimson Cove series is on its way. Find out more about him at: ********************************************************************************************* In collaboration, Thorne and Cross are currently writing several novels, including the next volume in the continuing gothic series, The Ravencrest Saga. Their first novel, The Cliffhouse Haunting, was an immediate bestseller. Together, they hosted the horror-themed radio show Thorne & Cross: Haunted Nights LIVE! which featured such guests as Anne Rice of The Vampire Chronicles, Charlaine Harris of the Southern Vampire Mysteries and basis of the HBO series True Blood, Jeff Lindsay, author of the Dexter novels, Jay Bonansinga of The Walking Dead series, Laurell K. Hamilton of the Anita Blake novels, Peter Atkins, screenwriter of Hellraiser 2, 3, and 4, worldwide bestseller V.C. Andrews, Kim Harrison of the Hollows series, and New York Times best sellers Preston & Child, Christopher Rice, and Christopher Moore. ********************************************************************************************** Currently, Thorne & Cross are hosts of Thorne & Cross: Carnival Macabre, where listeners can discover all manner of demented delights, unearth terrifying treasures, and explore the dark side of the arts.

2 thoughts on “The Damnation Game by Clive Barker

  1. This is one of the few Clive Barker books I haven’t read – although it is on my book shelf. Time I remedied that situation. There is a reason Stephen King said, ‘I have seen the future of horror, and its name is Clive Barker.’ (Slight paraphrase.)

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