Quicksilver by Dean Koontz

Vintage Koontz…..

If you are an avid fan of Dean Koontz, then you will recognise several things from this book. First, this is vintage Koontz, writing as he has for many years except for a few miscues like “Ashley Bell”. Second, the main character in this story has the feel of Odd Thomas. Third, the plot is strangely similar to his book “Twilight Eyes”. And finally fourth, this has all the earmarks of a continuing story line.
Koontz is an author that loves words and his stories are always thin on plot but full of description, this is no exception. Much like Stephen King, you either like Koontz or you don’t, I do.
This one gets four stars….

The Whispering Room by Dean Koontz

9780345546807   Mr. Koontz, glad to have you back…..    ****

This is the second novel in the Jane Hawk series. In the first, The Silent Corner, Koontz re-established himself as the writer I have grown to love. After reading Ashley Bell, I wondered if he had lost it. This novel shows he’s back.

In the continuation of Jane Hawk’s pursuit of whomever is responsible for her husband’s suicide, Koontz’s ability as a wordsmith shines. The plot, as in most of his novels, is simple, and it is his command of prose that keeps the pages turning.

While there are parts that are predictable, there were enough twists to keep me interested and guessing, especially in the end, which I will not reveal.

When I read the first book in the series, I thought one more would wrap up the story. I was wrong, Koontz managed to stretch it to a third, which I look forward to reading.

This one gets four stars.

Ashley Bell by Dean Koontz



As only as Koontz can do…   ****


Dean Koontz is a master craftsman with words. In this novel he shows his talent as a wordsmith better than in his last few books. In typical “Koontz” style, the plot is fairly simple and it is his flourish with prose that makes this a good read.

His imagination is at its peak as he weaves ghosts, Navy SEALS, cancer patients, the occult, and paranormal into a page turner.  The story gripped me from the beginning and it was only about two-thirds in that the truth of what was happening was revealed. Even though it was easy to see where he was going with the plot at that point, he writes in a way that kept me reading to see how he would actually finish the story.

The truth of what is happening to the main character, Bibi, reminded me of an old episode of the Twilight Zone. The ending to her story was satisfying, although predictable. The actual ending to this story does leave room for the reader’s imagination to take over.

Koontz is not afraid to stretch himself as a writer, and us as readers. He does both with this novel.

This one gets four stars.



The City by Dean Koontz



Not A Typical Koontz Novel, in this case that is a good thing…..****

As a long time fan of most of what Dean Koontz has written, I enjoy it when he stretches himself as a writer into new territory. Sometimes it works well, as in this case, sometimes not, as in “77 Shadow Street”. Being as established as he is he can experiment which he obviously is not afraid to do.

This is not a typical “Koontz” novel, but it is one of his better ones of late. The story, as in most of his books, is fairly simple and without too many surprises. But his writing borders on literary as he unfolds the tale of Jonah Kirk’s childhood. Is it a gripping page turner? No. It is a well written creative piece of writing that engages the reader much like the classics of old. Not on the par with say “Les Miserables” by Victor Hugo but at least heading in that direction.

There were only three things that bothered me in this novel, the first being the cover. When I went to order the book I had to look twice thinking that I was re-ordering “Innocence”. The covers are way too similar, almost as if the publisher used the second choice from “Innocence” on this one.

Second, Koontz makes a statement in the book regarding Japan during World War II that caused me to pause for a moment. He says “…not just two souls among many thousands atomized as a terrible consequence of Japan’s war crimes and its refusal to surrender.” While we did bomb Japan because of the leadership’s refusal to surrender, and it is true the Japanese army committed war crimes, to paint the people of Japan with that broad of a brush bothered me.

The third was the statement “as long as a man can pee, Jonah, he can take on anything the world throws at him”. This also gave me pause as I thought of all the people who can’t “pee” and how they overcome diversity every day.

The bottom line is don’t read this expecting a typical Koontz story, read it for the pleasure of a story well crafted.




Frankenstein: Lost Souls


Koontz Is Back    *****


I have read and own everything Dean Koontz has written. His last few books were a little disappointing and it is nice to see him back in “Koontz” form.

This book was hard to put down. He hasn’t kept me riveted since “Velocity“, until now. The end does come abruptly and I had to remind myself this IS a series.

Welcome back Dean!!

77 Shadow Street

77 shadowst

“Micro” Run Amok    **

Let me say that I have read all of DK’s books, actually I also own all of them, and am a died in the wool fan. Even when a book of his is not up to par with his best, I enjoy reading his descriptive prose. This book pushed the limits of both likeability and readability.

Having recently finished “Micro” by Micheal Crichton, I was disappointed to see a similar theme in this novel. Having recently finished “11/22/63” by Stephen King I was expecting at least as good of a tale of time travel. And having read “What The Night Knows” by Koontz, was a little surprised to see the repeat of a time warp story.

Dean Koontz has the ability to keep a reader on the edge of their seat and turning pages as fast as one can read, as in “Mr. Murder” or “Intensity”. This book not only had no surprises, but as some have reviewed, it was a chore to read through. At least in this novel it seems as though DK got caught up more in description than in plot. As soon as I realized the cause of the “mystery”, my wife heard a loud groan from me.

Not every book by an author can be their best but let’s just hope the next one is at least better than this one!

Innocence: A Novel


So Close, Yet So Far..(Caution Spoiler Alert)   ***

There is no doubt that Dean Koontz is an incredible writer, story teller. As I type this I am sitting in front of my bookshelf that has all of his novels, some even signed by him. When you pick up a Koontz book you know you are going to be dazzled by new words and amazing descriptions, and hopefully a good story. “Innocence” has the first two, no question, while the third, a good story, fell short.

The first problem with the story is not only is it a rehash of the classic “Beauty and the Beast”, but an almost plagiarized version of the television series that ran from 1987 to 1990. As I read, the image of Ron Perlman as a man who resembled a lion wandering the underground of New York, stayed in my head.

Putting that aside, I was enjoying the ride Dean takes us on and loving the way he writes. Some have said they had a problem with the flashbacks which he uses almost every other chapter, this did not bother me as I enjoy the process of his weaving a story together. What did bother me was the way he ended the story.

For me, and I guess this is a spoiler, to have the end be another end of the world story seemed lazy. There were several directions the story could have taken, but to wrap it up in a neat package with a sermon on the failings of mankind and the almost Disney idea of the lion and lamb lying down together was a little much.

It seems once again I have to say this is not his best work, and just maybe the next one will measure up to the Koontz we all love.