Imajica

ISBN: 0060937262
ISBN 13: 9780060937263
By: Clive Barker Richard A. Kirk

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About this book

From master storyteller Clive Barker comes an epic tale of myth, magic, and forbidden passion—complete with new illustrations and a new Appendix. Imajica is an epic beyond compare: vast in conception, obsessively detailed in execution, and apocalyptic in its resolution. At its heart lies the sensualist and master art forger, Gentle, whose life unravels when he encounters Judith Odell, whose power to influence the destinies of men is vaster than she knows, and Pie 'oh' pah, an alien assassin who comes from a hidden dimension.That dimension is one of five in the great system called Imajica. They are worlds that are utterly unlike our own, but are ruled, peopled, and haunted by species whose lives are intricately connected with ours. As Gentle, Judith, and Pie 'oh' pah travel the Imajica, they uncover a trail of crimes and intimate betrayals, leading them to a revelation so startling that it changes reality forever.

Reader's Thoughts

Aneel

Spectacularly good. A fresh fantasy with a well thought out cosmology and a very interesting set of worlds. Barker creates a setting that's at once enticing and foreboding and populates it with a variety of heroes and powers, humans and monstrosities, each with their own very believable drives and failings.There are worlds beyond Earth—four of them, in fact—separated from Earth by a magical void full of ravenous monsters. Three of them are under the control of a cruel Autarch, who rules from his huge city of Yzordderrex. God seems to have walled himself away in the last of them. Two centuries ago, the greatest magicians of all of these worlds tried to join Earth to them, and caused a catastrophe when they failed. Now an opportunity to try again has come, but what's worse: failure, or success?

Nicole

Another breathtaking masterpiece by Clive Barker. This novel is all that you could want in a fantasy, plus more. The emotion in this novel is just so gripping and heartbreaking. The relationships are complex, three-dimensional, and weave into the plot rather than working on the side of it and interfering occasionally. This book has some of the greatest sex scenes I've ever read. Barker is not afraid to put his horror touches in his stories, and this is not an exception; he grabs the fantasy genre by the throat and shakes it up, creating something as frightening as it is whimsical.

Geert Daelemans

Enter Clive's DominionsJohn Furie Zacharias, also known as Gentle, is a master forger. His life is nothing but a series of lies that go far beyond the paintings that he forges. But behind all the lies, Gentle unknowingly carries with him a secret of universal proportions. Once every two hundred years the universe, which some call the Imajica, enters a mystical moment at which it can be reconciled. Exactly at this moment the five Dominions can be reunited. Earth, being the fifth Dominion, is at the center of this process and Gentle is one of the few who can start the reconciliation. When Gentle learns that in a few weeks that unique moment will start again, he has to race against time to find out which role he has to play. But that is not all: also his friends get sucked into a spiral of magical events that bring all of them to worlds they could have never imagined.That Clive Barker has an amazing imagination is maybe best proven by the magic of his early novel Imajica. More than eight hundred pages of wonderfully strange and outlandish images are bestowed upon the reader. It is not always easy to make any sense of the story itself, but after the exciting and utterly dark opening, many people will be forgiving about this shortcoming . True, Imajica is anything but a light read, but it succeeds where many fantasy novels fail: it sucks the reader into a completely new universe and really grows on you. Maybe this is mostly due to the strangely erotic suspense that seeps through the pages. The character of Pie�oh�pah is the best example of this tension. Not surprising if you know that Pie is an androgynous creature that shows itself to people as the object of lust they crave the most.Although this book will not be everyone�s cup of tea, it will be unforgettable for those who dare to take the jump into Clive�s other Dominions.

SterlingSpider

I was actually pretty hesitant to give this book a numeric rating based on the fact that its taken me several years to read it. I love Barker, but it seems to take me at least two tries to get through anything of his longer then 200 pages. This one actually took three tries which in my mind has to count as a pretty heavy strike against it, especially considering how immersive a reader I am. I've slammed through longer books in a couple of days. There was a whole lot about the plot of this book that seemed a little too obvious to me very early on, but well... I'm a woman so maybe that makes some sense (and that will make considerably more sense if you read it). The lines between good and bad are considerably more subtle then the typical Barker story but that's sort of part of the whole thing.It was good, and it was worth reading, but be forewarned that if you decide to read this it is a definite undertaking.

U.L. Harper

It's an epic. There are so many characters that one might think that Mr. Barker didn't come up with them but someone or something whispered who they were into his ear and he merely...channeled these characters.After I read it I couldn't read anything for about a month. Barker isn't a word smith as much as he is a story-teller. His grammar sometimes makes you wonder if anyone proofread the story, but still, after you read it, it leaves you wondering if these places exist...but you know they do. And you get to meet God. You get to meet the people kicked out of the bible. You know why pieces of your life seem missing. Then right when you think, well, this journey better be worth it, it suddenly is.I know people who have tried to read this novel but simply couldn't get through it. They are wimps. This is a 860 page triumph. A great read.

Jared

I truly love Clive Barker's work, but this is BY FAR his worst, most indulgent novel. It's confused, confusing, pompous, silly, boring, lumbering and just bad. The characters act in seemingly random fashion, the pacing is long stretches of nothing followed by some infodump and then an act of violence. It's just an incoherent mess with neither plot, character or language to keep it interesting. Barker relies too heavily on his world-building to sell the novel, but quite frankly, Imajica is much less interesting than he thinks it is. The author wrote that he came up with this story from dreams he was having and it shows. It's a hodgepodge of vague ideas and images that no one but the person who dreamt it would find interesting. Avoid at all costs and pick up any other Barker book.

Bill

If you've read his Books of Blood, the Damnation Game, the Great and Secret Show, and Weaveworld but haven't gotten around to Imajica yet, turn off your computer right now and get out there and get it. This is Clive Barker's masterpiece. Earth is part of a dominion of five other worlds, and the only one unaware of the others. This novel is about the reuniting of Earth to the other four worlds. Again, this is horrific, beautiful, mind-expanding.An incredible feat of the imagination...this is one of the few novels I will read over again. Am I gushing over this? You bet.

Coni Warren

Epic novel (over 800 pages in hardback) about four dominions that are all interconnected with each other but disconnected with the fifth dominion, Earth. There are forces out there that try to reconcile all the dominions every two hundred years but there are others out there that try to keep this and any other type of magic from happening.Clive Barker is known for horror, but this is pure fantasy. I love his fantasy books more. I became so involved with the characters and everything they were doing, I didn’t want it to end. It did have a natural resolution at the end, so there was no need for it to continue. I still wanted more.

Suttola

** spoiler alert ** From reading this I learned that vivid dreams can make great novels. Barker must have eaten a few rounds of cheese on toast the night before he came up with the premise for Imajica: Painter/Womaniser/Son of God finds and teams up with androgynous alien assassin and travels through the In Ovo to another dominion before releasing femininity to the ultimate destruction of the establishment. And then God comes in at the end.This is clearly a summary and not a very accurate one at that. I think I love this book because I read it at an age when I was still quite impressionable and I let myself believe that if I found the right artifact I could magic myself to Yzorderrex (sp?) and have a real adventure with Hoi Polloi and chums.Fact is, I'm still that impressionable now and can't rule out that there is another world to discover. I'll keep reading this one because it helps me to believe. Well done Clive.

Dreadlocksmile

Following the release of the awesome novel "Everville", Clive Barker published the Dark Fantasy classic "Imajica" in 1991. This epic adventure into the fantastic world of Barker's endless imagination runs for a very impressive and gripping 1136 pages in total. The storyline is complex, weaving multiple plots together to create the rich tapestry that has made Imajica such a loved and respected novel.The characterization is detailed and superb, as you are taken through a whole fantasy world that will set your imagination alight. Barker's descriptions are vivid and darkly fantastic, with a deep atmosphere that immerses the reader into the story he has to tell.Altogether, this is one of Barker's greatest achievements, bringing us a novel that will be cherished by all. It's a novel you will miss once finished and find yourself re-reading again and again as the years go by.

Adam

** spoiler alert ** This book absolutely kicks ass. A journey to discover the self, and why his previous self had chosen to erase his memory and jeopardize the balance of the metaphysical. A journey to rediscover his love for someone, to answer unanswerable questions, and a rebellion against a tyrannous god.Imajica is the name of a system of five dominions. the world we know is the fifth dominion and is the only one of them that is unreconciled. The other four know of one another and travel and trade, meanwhile, earth-like reality is some legend, a place that no one can get to and figure out why it hasn't been reconciled yet.the story is about the reconciliation, not so much one man's destiny in it, but his recovery of his role and reconciliation with himself and his failures.

Nilanjan Guin

Clive Barker has etched out a universe in my mind that, I think, will be hard to erase, for a long long time. Any summary of this book is insufficient to portray even in a miniscule manner, the vastness, depth and intricacy of the universe, human feeling and spirituality that this book lays out in front of the reader. I had read Books of Blood, Vols. 1-3 earlier and was ready for unconventional portrayals of society, morals and creatures, but this book goes many steps beyond.The book beautifully portrays the irrelevance of conventional religious beliefs (or for that matter, conventional rationality) and holds it in contrast to the everlasting nature of a few simple beliefs and passions - which is eventually what frees the soul from the various shackles we ourselves tie it to.I can safely add this book, along with The Dark Tower series to my most loved collection. After all both of them took me along with the protagonists to journeys I could not even imagine and left me to ponder on the meaning of life, death and love.

Chris

After I read the 900 page fantasy epic Imajica, my fingers ached from holding the doorstopper for so long. I normally don’t get to the point where I can’t put down a book because I MUST know how it ends, but Imajica has the rare honor of doing that for me. I tried reading it when I was 16, but the beginning was too slow and I couldn’t get into it. I gave it another chance when I was 20, and the more I read it the more it absorbed me.If you like reading about sex, art, and fantasy then this is definitely for you. An artist with a bad memory and a promiscuous woman get involved with a strange Daoish mystic that has travelled to Earth to find the only man who can reconcile the five dominions of space. Now, you’re already thinking “wow, five dominions of space, Dao-phantoms, an artist with amnesia... this is really out there”, but that’s an understatement my friend. Wait until Mr. Barker actually takes you to these dominions, then you’re bound to have a cerebral hemorrhage. Visually-striking is Imajica’s true genius and depth, the extent which makes you wonder how Clive Barker comes up with the things he does. Their adventure gets more hypnotic, political, and intense as the story weaves its way up a trail to Yzorrdorex, a sort of “capital” of the dominions. All Hell breaks lose when a revolution is born and mystical revelations grab the very essence of what it takes to elevate a book’s plot. If you find the first 100 pages boring but you’re interested in the characters, stick with it because you’ll reap the benefits in the end with a very rewarding, epic climax.Judith, Gentle and Pi remain three of the most mysterious characters in all literature for me. Their complicated relationships are just as head-scratching as solving the Grand Unified Theory of physics. I’m really surprised that Imajica hasn’t been made into a movie yet, but it probably will eventually.

Hydra Star

Though one of my all time favorite books, when I set out a little over a month ago to re-read Clive Barker‘s Imajica, for the eight or ninth time in the fifteen years I’ve owned my now slightly battered hardcover edition, I didn’t know if I’d include a write up about it in my blog. It’s not only difficult for me to summaries this book, a very lengthy volume at 824 pages, but extremely difficult to do so without giving way too much. Almost literally every aspect of the storyline is a new discovery.What I can tell, without fear of spoiling it for anyone, is that it’s a book about other worlds and our connection, or rather lack of connection, to them. It’s also about love, the duality of nature, and god. But mostly it’s about enter turmoil, the difficult choices we make, and what we discover about ourselves through our mistakes and our journeys.Now all that might lead the reader to think that the story is purely spiritual and inspirational and a real departure from Clive Barker‘s early splatter punk days, but far from it. Imajica is violent and erotic; even comical in places. You are given ample time to get to know, understand, and love/hate the characters before they’re ripped apart.Though the story does have some minor flaws, both in plot and untold back story, the pace is such that a reader is soon caught up in the wonders of it and willing to forgive it a few trespasses. I’d strongly suggest it as a good read to anyone with a love for horror or fantasy. More then that I’d put it on my personal must read list.

Marsha

It's an epic. There are so many characters that one might think that Mr. Barker didn't come up with them but someone or something whispered who they were into his ear and he merely...channeled these characters. After I read it I couldn't read anything for about a month. Barker isn't a word smith as much as he is a story-teller. His grammar sometimes makes you wonder if anyone proofread the story, but still, after you read it, it leaves you wondering if these places exist...but you know they do. And you get to meet God. You get to meet the people kicked out of the bible. You know why pieces of your life seem missing. Then right when you think, well, this journey better be worth it, it suddenly is. [image error]I know people who have tried to read this novel but simply couldn't get through it. They are wimps. This is a 860 page triumph. A great read.

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