July 11, 2008

Odd Hours

Odd Hours by Dean Koontz
2008 Bantam Books
Quit on 7/8/08
Rating: DNF

Product Description

Only a handful of fictional characters are recognized by first name alone. Dean Koontz’s Odd Thomas is one of those rare literary heroes who have come alive in readers’ imaginations as he explores the greatest mysteries of this world and the next with his inimitable wit, heart, and quiet gallantry. Now Koontz follows Odd as he is irresistibly drawn onward to a destiny he cannot imagine and to undreamed of places where the perils he will face and the stakes for which he fights will eclipse all that he has known.

The legend began in the obscure little town of Pico Mundo. A fry cook named Odd was rumored to have the extraordinary ability to communicate with the dead. Through tragedy and triumph, exhilaration and heartbreak, word of Odd Thomas’s gifts filtered far beyond Pico Mundo, attracting unforgettable new friends—and enemies of implacable evil. With great gifts comes the responsibility to meet great challenges. But no mere human being was ever meant to face the darkness that now stalks the world—not even one as oddly special as Odd Thomas.

After grappling with the very essence of reality itself, after finding the veil that separates him from his soul mate, Stormy Llewellyn, tantalizingly thin yet impenetrable, Odd longed only to return to a life of quiet anonymity with his two otherworldly sidekicks—his dog Boo and a new companion, one of the few who might rival his old pal Elvis. But a true hero, however humble, must persevere. Haunted by dreams of an all-encompassing red tide, Odd is pulled inexorably to the sea, to a small California coastal town where nothing is as it seems. Now the forces arrayed against him have both official sanction and an infinitely more sinister authority…and in this dark night of the soul dawn will come only after the most shattering revelations of all.

Burnishing Dean Koontz’s stature as a master of suspense and one of our most innovative and gifted storytellers, Odd Hours illuminates a legacy of mystery and hope that will shine on long after the final page.

I quit! After 125 pages, I just couldn't get interested or come to care about Odd's latest dilemma. I loved Odd Thomas (read it twice), but was disappointed with both Forever Odd and Brother Odd. I really wanted to fall in love with this latest installment, but it kept putting me to sleep! I did, however, discover a couple of passages that were worth noting.

I love the dry wit in this one:

As I confronted the rat, I saw in my mind's eye a scenario in which I startled the rodent, whereupon it raced toward me in a panic, slipped under a leg of my jeans, squirmed up my calf, squeaked behind my knee, wriggled along my thigh, and decided to establish a nest between my buttocks. Through all of this, I would be windmilling my arms and hopping on one foot until I hopped off the beam and, with the hapless rodent snugged between my cheeks, plunged toward the sea just in time to crash into the searchers' boat, smashing a hole in the bottom with my face, thereupon breaking my neck
and drowning.

You might think that I have earned the name Odd Thomas, but it has been mine since birth.


Fragrant with the cinnamony aroma of chocolate-pumpkin cookies that I had baked earlier in the afternoon, brightened only by the golden glow of string lights hidden in the recessed toe kick of the cabinets, the kitchen waited warm and welcoming.

I am no theologian. I would not be surprised, however, if Heaven proved to be a cozy kitchen, where delicious treats appeared in the oven and in the refrigerator whenever you wanted them, and where the cupboards were full of good books.

Maybe I'll have better luck with Koontz's fall release of Your Heart Belongs to Me. Or not. I just never know how I'm going to react to a book by Koontz.


  1. I do like these bits. I think I should give the first one a try. I've never read Koontz (I have Intensity stashed away somewhere), so Odd Thomas might be a good place to start.

  2. I'm like you with the Koontz books -- I just never know. I did like Brother Odd but I think I may have been the only person who did.

  3. He does seem to be one of those authors, doesn't he? I didn't like the 1st book of his that I read - at all - but my sister convinced me to try again & I stumbled on Odd Thomas which I loved. So now if I don't like the book in the 1st couple of chapters, I'm on to the next. I think I'll try Odd Hours anyway (against your advice)& see for myself. Thanks for the review.

  4. Andi - I think the first is definitely worth reading. It's a great story, whereas the others are just mediocre. I tried to read Intensity once, but quite honestly it was too intense! The Good Guy is another winner. I gave it a 4.5/5 rating.

    Katya - One of my girlfriends said she really liked Brother Odd, too, so you're not alone. If he writes another, you can let me know how it compares.

    Lee - It seems like everyone loved Odd Thomas. Maybe it should've been a stand-alone rather than a series. As I mentioned to Andi, The Good Guy is also a winner. Let me know what you think of Odd Hours. You may wind up lovin' it!

    Thanks for stopping by.

  5. I have never read Koontz before--I guess his books always sound a bit too creepy for me. I will say that I have found several books on your sidebar that will need to go on my tbr list!! Thanks for visiting and commenting on my blog. I don't get many visitor so I treasure each comment!
    *smiles* and happy reading...
    (page after page)

  6. Kim - Koontz is pretty creepy, although not as much as Stephen King!

    I'm glad you've found some books to add to your TBR list on my sidebar. Keep me posted on how you like them.

    I'll get your blog added to my blogroll later this week. I really need to do some "spring cleaning" on my blog and that's one of my chores.

  7. Oh, I can't tell you how happy I am that someone else didn't like this book! I did finish it, but after reading one after the other 5 star glowing reviews, I was beginning to think maybe it was just me.

    I absolutely didn't get it at all. Weird characters and none of them went anywhere.

  8. Melissa - Isn't it funny how excited we get when someone doesn't like the same book as us? I guess it's all about validation. :) Sorry you wound up reading the entire book only to be disappointed, though.

  9. I used to read Koontz but haven't in years. I am pretty sure though I added Odd Thomas to my TBR list after you mentioned it. I didn't realize it was a series though. That's a bummer that this latest one wasn't as good as the others. Oh well. Maybe his new book will be a winner.

  10. Iliana - I think you'd be perfectly fine just reading Odd Thomas and skipping the other three.

  11. Having just finished Odd Hours I am pleased to say the characters are still drawing me in. I would not normally down supernatural style reads but each one has engaged me not just through Odd's humanity but the times I had to pause and appreciate Koontz's beautifully written words. I am looking forward to the rest.

  12. Bessie - I'm glad you enjoyed this book better than I did. I love Odd and wish I had enjoyed the rest in this series as much as Odd Thomas. Koontz certainly has a way with words!

    Thank you for commenting on my 2-year-old review! It's always nice to hear from a new reader.


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