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James Herbert Biography

(1943– ), The Rats, The Fog, The Dark, Domain, James Herbert's Dark Places, Fluke

Literature Reference: American Literature, English Literature, Classics & Modern FictionEncyclopedia of Literature: William Hart-Smith Biography to Sir John [Frederick William] Herschel Biography

British writer of horror fiction, born in London, educated at Hornsey College of Art. He worked in advertising from 1963 to 1977, when he became a full-time writer. The Rats (1974), his highly successful first novel, is a dystopian fantasy rooted in his childhood familiarity with parts of London devastated by wartime bombings. The city also provides the background for The Fog (1975), The Dark (1980), and Domain (1984). Herbert's appeal as the best-selling contemporary British horror writer draws on his ability to base the grotesquely imaginative elements of his work in narratives reflecting aspects of common experience. Much of his writing features specifically English settings and idioms; James Herbert's Dark Places (1993) records the locations and legends informing his work. His other novels include Fluke (1977), The Jonah (1981), The Magic Cottage (1986), Portent (1992), and The Ghosts of Sleath (1994).

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