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Editor reviews

Sean Barrett deploys a hard-edged rasp to heighten the sense of horror and malevolence in this spine-chilling story about a British former intelligence agent who investigates the disappearance of a young Mossad agent. Steadman initially refuses the job, but when his partner ends up crucified on his door, he is drawn into a conspiracy that involves a neo-Nazi cult's search for the spear used to stab Jesus Christ on the cross. Barrett's voice accommodates the various characters in this story, and his well-placed pauses are timed to provide a maximum level of suspense.

Summary

Dark destiny. When Steadman agreed to investigate the disappearance of a young Mossad agent, he had no idea he would be drawn into a malevolent conspiracy. Neo-Nazi cultists are bent on unleashing an age-old unholy power on an unsuspecting world-power rising out of a demonic relic from man's dark primal past to threaten humanity with horror beyond any nightmare.

James Herbert was one of Britain’s greatest popular novelists and our #1 best-selling writer of chiller fiction. Widely imitated and hugely influential, he wrote 23 novels which have collectively sold over 54 million copies worldwide and been translated into 34 languages.

Born in London in the forties, James Herbert was art director of an advertising agency before turning to writing fiction in 1975. His first novel, The Rats, was an instant best-seller and is now recognised as a classic of popular contemporary fiction. Herbert went on to publish a new top ten best-seller every year until 1988. He wrote six more best-selling novels in the 1990s and three more since: Once, Nobody True and The Secret of Crickley Hall. Herbert died in March 2013 at the age of 69.

©1978 James Herbert (P)2013 Audible Ltd

Critic reviews

"Herbert was by no means literary, but his work had a raw urgency. His best novels, The Rats and The Fog, had the effect of Mike Tyson in his championship days: no finesse, all crude power. Those books were best sellers because many readers (including me) were too horrified to put them down.” (Stephen King)
"There are few things I would like to do less than lie under a cloudy night sky while someone read aloud the more vivid passages of 'Moon'. In the thriller genre, do recommendations come any higher?" (Andrew Postman, The New York Times Book Review)
"Herbert goes out in a blaze of glory" ( Daily Mail)

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What listeners say about The Spear

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One of my fav's, well read and gripping!

Love this story, very well narrated and based on a lot of facts a great audio book!

7 people found this helpful

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  • PM
  • 30-06-22

Worst JH book I have read / listened to

The story is poor, the writing style clumsy and very dated. JH writes fairly good psychological horror but this attempt at a thriller is just awful. It's very pedestrian and any actual action sequences are cliche and over long losing all tension. The narrator would do a reasonable job on horror but just comes over as monotonous in this work as if he finds the story as dull as i did and is forcing himself to keep speaking the long winded plot explanations that cant hide the gaping plot holes. Listen to some of Herbert's other works like the rats but give this one a miss.

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grippingly awesomely good

narrator was very good
finished this in 4 days.
brilliant. I'm a big James Herbert fan but had never read this one before. glad I have now.

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Why is this not a movie?

Another classic from one of the uks best. I read this originally at secondary school loved it then. and still do now. that having to drive around a village to find a phone box would be so lost on millennials and gen Zs but this story would not work half as well if mobile phones were around at the time...


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Love this narrator

Revisiting all of Herberts books. Not such a great plot although starts well, the end is a bit of an anti climax.
Love the narrator though - a perfect voice and tone for the story

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Glad I didn’t pay for this

Glad I didn’t pay for this. Lost interest half way through couldn’t get into it

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A Bobby Dazzler

Not everyone's cup of tea, what with Neo-Nazis & the occult, but I enjoyed it enormously.

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bit of a let down

I enjoy James Herbert books and the suspense he builds, but this was a bit of a let down. You know when the bad guy explains his complicated evil scheme in detail to the main hero (for no reason whatsoever), well that's this book

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Good Story And Narration.

An enjoyable book and the narrator did a good job, you can't ask for more.

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Classic James Hebert

The Spear is a classic tale of Nazi occultists. I loved James Herbert as a teenager. Since then my reading habits have changed but returning to this after many years I found I still loved it. Brilliant narration too.

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  • Jon Weimer
  • 19-07-17

Too much setup for a rushed climax.

The book drags fit the first half, weighing down the plot, which then rushes the climax with a sparse resolution.