Odd Thomas - Odd Thomas, Bk 1 Author:Dean Koontz "The dead don't talk. I don't know why." But they do try to communicate, with a short-order cook in a small desert town serving as their reluctant confidant. Odd Thomas thinks of himself as an ordinary guy, if possessed of a certain measure of talent at the Pico Mundo Grill and rapturously in love with the most beautiful girl in the world, Storm... more »y Llewellyn. Maybe he has a gift, maybe it's a curse, Odd has never been sure, but he tries to do his best by the silent souls who seek him out. Sometimes they want justice, and Odd's otherworldly tips to Pico Mundo's sympathetic police chief, Wyatt Porter, can solve a crime. Occasionally they can prevent one. But this time it's different.
A mysterious man comes to town with a voracious appetite, a filing cabinet stuffed with information on the world's worst killers, and a pack of hyena-like shades following him wherever he goes. Who the man is and what he wants, not even Odd's deceased informants can tell him. His most ominous clue is a page ripped from a day-by-day calendar for August 15.
Today is August 14.
In less than twenty-four hours, Pico Mundo will awaken to a day of catastrophe. As evil coils under the searing desert sun, Odd travels through the shifting prisms of his world, struggling to avert a looming cataclysm with the aid of his soul mate and an unlikely community of allies that includes the King of Rock 'n' Roll. His account of two shattering days when past and present, fate and destiny converge is the stuff of our worst nightmares -- and a testament by which to live: sanely if not safely, with courage, humor, and a full heart that even in the darkness must persevere.« less
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This is, without a doubt, one of the best books that Dean Koontz has ever written. I was moved to tears reading it. I have been reading Koontz on and off since the early 90's, and haven't been impressed with much that he's done in the last decade. This books reveals a new, improved Koontz. I couldn't put it down, and for the first time in a long time, I felt like the relationship between the main characters worked. It still has that trademark Koontz humor and quirkiness, but it's the intensity is more subtle and heartfelt. This is not one to miss.
This is the start of a great Koontz series. Odd Thomas can see (but not speak to) the dead, and he sometimes just KNOWS the right thing to do. He's a young man who has given himself over to just that, doing the right thing to help both the living and the dead. His particularly endearing character is funny, self-critical, and spiritual in a sort of down-to-earth way; after all, the dead are just people that aren't alive anymore, to him. If you like anti-heroes, he's not it. He's a kind of old-fashioned hero we don't see that much anymore. Any moral ambiguities are more in his head, due to his self-questioning, than actual. Two scenes that stuck in my head may give you a nice sample: Thomas, hard at work as a fry cook in a popular diner, trying to get his orders straight while not betraying the fact that the diner is suddenly swarming with evil shadows that followed a customer in - because if they realize he can see them he'll have a fatal accident within seconds. Later in the book, Thomas chooses a baseball bat as his weapon and goes striding off without hesitation to try to stop several gunmen. I immediately ordered the next two books after I read this one.
I read Brother Odd first not know that it was the 3rd book in the Odd Thomas collection. That kind of ruined part of the ending of this book for me. I felt like it took a long time to get to the excitement, but it is a well written book overall.