Coldheart Canyon Paperback – 2001
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Top Customer Reviews
He's wrong. His retreat from the glare of publicity takes him to a place that no map of Hollywood has ever described: Coldheart Canyon. Here, nursing his wounds and his desperation, he discovers what the history of the Dream Factory has long concealed: a world somewhere between life and death, reality and illusion, where the great legends of a forgotten Hollywood are waiting to educate him in the bitter business of life after fame.
Somehow, sooner or later, everyone from Tammy, the overweight, obsessive, good president of Todd's fan club, to Micky, a dying former child star with a life full of secrets, ends up in Coldheart Canyon, finding out things they never wanted to know about sex, madness, courage and generosity.
Set in Hollywood, Coldheart Canyon is a portrayal of a city that has a darker underbelly than we usually see. Told with a deft hand and a witty mind, we see Tinsel Town as it really is: that glamorous half-world in which beauty, power and youth are wealth; all can be stripped away in a heartbeat, and nothing is what it seems, even Death itself.
I was held spellbound as Barker spun his tale, weaving story and background seamlessly. Coldheart Canyon is a large book, close to 800 pages in hardcover.Read more ›
her missing heartthrob. She tracks him to Coldheart Canyon, a great mansion haunted by old Hollywood stars and controlled by Katya Lupi, a silent screen star whose youthful ethereal beauty is still strangely preserved despite decades of hard living, and who will do anything to keep Todd by her side.
What worked for me:
Tammy rocks! She starts off as a stereotypical character, a fat housewife obsessed with a famous actor; but she turns out to be a tough, sweet-natured and intelligent woman.
Size-wise, although her weight isn't mentioned, I expected she's a rather big girl.
What didn't work for me:
Not enough Tammy in this book, and she should have been given a love interest.
I highly recommend this suspense-filled horror novel. Tammy Lauper is a great heroine; do not judge her right away. She becomes a wonderfully well-defined character as the story progresses.
Warning: There are mentions of the occult in this book, as well as some very violent and sexual scenes, including rape and bestiality.
COLDHEART CANYON deals with the movie business. A '20s era silent-movie siren has a room installed in her house made entirely of tile taken from a monestery in Romania. This tile, some 30,000 pieces, may actually have been built by Lilith, the wife of Satan, and it seems to have...shall we say...remarkable qualities. The '20s era movie star and all her friends and fellow stars are transfixed and transformed by the power of this room, known as "The Devil's Country." Nothing subtle here. Then we skip forward to present day Hollywood, where star Todd Pickett makes the mistake of getting plastic surgery and suffers severe damage. He takes refuge from the press at the long abandoned "pleasure palace" of the '20s era star, Katya, that he has never heard of. No one seems to live in the house, but we soon find out otherwise.
I've only scratched the surface of this wildy imaginative, almost bloated, novel. It's grand to read a book that takes on, with great humor, the foibles of the movie industry, and turns that satire into a horror novel of massive proportions. The house has one mystery after another, and the fates of the people who cross paths with the house, its grounds, its "residents" and especially The Devil's Country are drawn out in exquisite detail.Read more ›
Take it's length for example. Over 750 pages, it could have been easily squashed to 500, or maybe 400 pages. I flipped pages in slight frustration at the seemingly endless subplots that seem to pop up in the book. Some scenes could have been compacted, as I felt my attention dropping when I read them, no matter how gruesome or frightening the image was.
Todd Pickett is classic Barker characterization, and so is Tammy. Both are full characters, and that somewhat saved the novel. Katya Lupi appeared slightly empty to me, and her moods seemed to gravitate haphazardly.
I found Barker's version of Hollywood pleasantly different from what I had expected. I was expecting an entire chapter of the general Hollywood cliches, but Barker knew well enough to cut to the chase and get on with the plot.
Overall, a commendable effort. But too long, too dragged and perhaps a little too spiced.
Most recent customer reviews
From evidence in the author's introduction, I do wonder if this book was more difficult to produce than his others. Read morePublished on Nov. 11 2003 by Auliya
okay, i just slagged off heavily about "abarat" so i feel obliged to balance the scales by saying coldheart canyon is the only book i can remember literally not being able to put... Read morePublished on Nov. 2 2003 by miller stevens
A waste of everybody's time and energy, Barker's talent. I am open-minded, and I hung in there. Whichever characters survive this nightmare, I simply don't care anymore. Read morePublished on Sept. 14 2003
I was a little intimidated by the length of this book but I read it all in one night. It was remarkable and this is the Clive that I love dearly. Read morePublished on Aug. 31 2003 by DJ_Bitter
A full one-third of this book could have been edited out without effecting the story one bit. Wordy? YES !!!! Read morePublished on Aug. 14 2003 by Soundman
When asked by a more devoted Clive Barker fan what I thought of "Coldheart Canyon," I told him I couldn't put it down, but quickly added the disclaimer that he probably would not... Read morePublished on Aug. 8 2003 by John Ashley Nail
Coldheart Canyon is an interesting book. I will give it four stars, because it is closer to four than to three, but it deserves little more than 3 and a half. Read morePublished on Aug. 5 2003 by greatkingrat
Todd Pickett, one of the hottest movie stars of the last decade, faces the downfall of his career when extensive plastic surgery goes terribly wrong. Read morePublished on July 21 2003 by Geert Daelemans