Fear Paperback – Nov 1992
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From Library Journal
Ethnology professor Jim Lowry publishes a study explaining modern superstitions as the remnants of the primitive delusion that demons were the cause of disease and misfortune. Now it seems that demons may have begun a campaign of revenge for Lowry's skepticism: he awakens on a sidewalk, his clothes torn and stained, with no memory of the past four hours. In dreams he is told that if he finds the four hours, he will die. The publisher has adjured reviewers "please do not reveal the startling ending." There is indeed a twist, which is mildly clever though not "startling." According to the publisher, Fear first appeared in 1940 in the fantasy magazine Unknown and received praise from fantasy master Ray Bradbury. Though Fear may have been groundbreaking in 1940, the development of fantasy and horror fiction in the last 50 years means that the novel, unfortunately, seems a bit convoluted and curiously bland now. However, Hubbard's works are in demand, and Fear provides an interesting look at horror/fantasy of the 1940s.
- A.M.B. Amantia, Population Crisis Committee Lib., Washington D.C.
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
About the Author
With 19 New York Times bestsellers and more than 280 million copies of his works in circulation, L. Ron Hubbard is among the most acclaimed and widely read authors of our time. As a leading light of American Pulp Fiction through the 1930s and '40s, he is further among the most influential authors of the modern age. Indeed, from Ray Bradbury to Stephen King, there is scarcely a master of imaginative tales who has not paid tribute to L. Ron Hubbard. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
Top Customer Reviews
A day later, I have found my thoughts returning to this little tale, and a new sense of appreciation has begun to take root in my mind. Bits and pieces, particularly the oft-repeated frantic calls of Lowry's wife interspersed throughout the action, have begun to coalesce and make more sense to me. I must say that the ending is no longer so unsatisfying as it was at first.Read more ›
Fear is devastatingly boring. It introduces its hero, catch, and premise in the first twenty pages or so, then hems and haws for about a hundred with no plot development whatever while the unfortunate Prof. Lowry has episodic run-ins with the supernatural, finally gets a bit interesting in its final thirty pages by introducing some fairly original concepts, and then ends as abruptly as possible by putting everything on its head and cutting it down with a big rusty axe. Its Final Twist feels contrived, if crudely ironic.
"Fear" is terribly dated and its characters are cardboard-flat. Its protagonist is a perfectly upright fellow, logical, caring, with an academic background to boot: in other words - hard to identify with. "Fear" doesn't even have a defined antagonist. The story consists of a single catch which is revealed in its entirety on the very last page - for the remainder of the book Lowry jumps at shadows, shivers in the dark, sees strange things, and slowly goes mad (though, being so shallow in the first place, he doesn't have much of a personality to warp). Supposedly, he is out to find the four missing hours, but he has neither clues nor leads, nor any faint, sinister memories - he literally goes out at night and "looks" for his loss. The narrative lacks sophistication, and uses lots of exclamation marks and eye-grabbing sentences ("It was an inch deep in blood!").
Hardly worth the while to read.
Most recent customer reviews
I bought this book because my favourite bookshop didn't receive the one I ordered and I didn't have anything to read. Started it at 11pm... Couldn't sleep for 2 days. Read morePublished on March 9 2004 by Vincent
1) Roddey McDowall is such an enjoyable reader of books. His voice inflections appropriatley matching the fear, excitement, etc of the character is so well done. Read morePublished on Nov. 11 2002 by Erik1988
I consider Fear one of the best-written, most spellbinding books I have ever read. And I am not generally an avid reader of Thrillers or Sci-Fi or fiction in general. Read morePublished on May 15 2002 by Michael D. Kittell
This supposed horror book isn't a horror book. It's more like a description of an acid trip than anything else. Read morePublished on March 31 2002 by sporkdude
I enjoyed reading this book because it takes on a strange journey. Reading it from the "victim's" perspective adds a real feeling of fright and nervousness to the events... Read morePublished on Jan. 24 2002 by Retesh D. Shah
I really like mistery and horror books, I always did - why, I don't know, since a lot of them gave me nightmares! This book was different. Read morePublished on Jan. 14 2002 by Elisa
This is a small, quite famous short novel by the controversial Ron Hubbard. I must say that I found an exaggeration the high number of comments about the chills that this novel... Read morePublished on Dec 4 2001 by Pablo Iglesias Alvarez
I'll keep this review simple and state that this type of book is not really my thing. It starts off normal enough, but then a Professor Lowry loses his job over an article and,... Read morePublished on Nov. 23 2001 by Steven Taylor
This novel did an excellent job of taking the reader along with the main character down into a cavern of madness. Read morePublished on May 11 2001 by Don Barzyk