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Other Books (Non-King) > Dean Koontz

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message 1: by Angie, Constant Reader (new)

Angie | 2094 comments OK OK OK OK so those that know me on GRs knows I try to be a good moderator... I swear. One of our members Dustin made me feel bad for deleting his thread in the introduce yourself topic. Soooooo.... I am starting a thread here on his behalf! Lets talk about Koontz. Do you love him hate him? Read any of his books? Discuss here!


Kandice | 1034 comments Angie-You are an excellent mod! You always post the most informative (and fun) links!

BTW, I have liked a couple of Koontz works, but some are really out there, and just a little too weird for me to enjoy. Weird enough that they are uncomfortable to read. I can't remember the title (anyone?) but the last I read was about a girl kept in a sensory deprivation tank. It really freaked me out.


message 3: by Angie, Constant Reader (new)

Angie | 2094 comments Anyone have any favorite Koontz books?


message 4: by Chris , The Hardcase (new)

Chris  (haughtc) | 868 comments I absolutely loved Life Expectancy & Odd Thomas.

Books 2 & 3 of the Odd Thomas series were ok, but nothing special.

The first two Frankenstein books were pretty good, and I was planning to read the 3rd. Unfortunately, I lost all interest by the time he decided to get around to releasing it, so I'll probably skip it. (GRRM take note)

I've read a few other Koontz novels over the years. I enjoyed them for the most part but nothing to write home about. Except for LE and OT.


Kandice | 1034 comments Oh! I like the Odd Thomas books and was hoping to read the Frankensteins.


Lee | 15 comments The quality of Koontz's books seems to vary quite a bit. I've read some pretty good ones and some that are dull as rocks. His books are worth giving a try but are no where near as reliable as King's.


message 7: by Becky, Ka-Tet (new)

Becky (Beckyofthe19and9) | 2566 comments I used to read a lot of Koontz, until I felt like he got preachy. Then not so much.

That being said Intensity is one of my FAVORITE books. It's so... intense. Edgler Vess is one of the creepiest and scariest serial killers I've ever read about.

I'll agree with Chris that Life Expectancy was very good. A co-worker recommended that one to me, and I enjoyed it a lot. Very humorous and though religion and faith played a big part in that one, the religiosity wasn't so preachy as to be annoying.

The Taking was another one that I enjoyed, ALLLLLLLL the way until the end. The end, where the religious spewage ruined the book. But, I will say that this book contained THE ONLY (so far) passage that has ever made me put a book down because I was too creeped-out/scared to keep reading. And that includes The Exorcist. So that's something, right?

I've read a couple of Koontz's scientific-experiments/conspiracy books, but I can't recall them off the top of my head and looking through the titles of his books isn't helping. Little tidbits stick out in my mind, and I think I've read the one Kandice is talking about with the sensory deprivation, but I can't remember anything else about that or the others.

I do have Odd Thomas to read, so I'm looking forward to that one... Not in any rush though. My To-read page count looks like Morse Code right now for all the bricks and series of bricks that I've committed myself to. :P


message 8: by Ben (last edited Sep 24, 2009 09:11AM) (new)

Ben (OneCoolMonkey) | 34 comments My mom, who was a King fan going back a while, also is a big Koontz fan. She was after me to read Watchers since I was a teen. I finally read it a couple of years ago (better late than never, right mom?) and I thought it was decent. But, it didn't blow me away or grab me, really. It was okay, though. I've been told Velocity is pretty good, and it's on my "to read" list. His style doesn't impress me all that much though...so I'm not expecting greatness...just to be entertained and distracted.


message 9: by Becky, Ka-Tet (new)

Becky (Beckyofthe19and9) | 2566 comments It seems like all of his books are different though. Intensity is the only book that I would recommend unreservedly. You should give that one a try Ben. It's a straight thriller, with no supernatural aspects or Deus ex machina, no scientific experiments, etc.

Just an insane ride. :)


message 10: by Chris , The Hardcase (new)

Chris  (haughtc) | 868 comments I read Velocity a couple of years ago, and I really don't remember it.

Becky, I've actually got a copy of Intensity on my shelf that my mom bought me after it first came out. I never got around to reading it. Mayhap I should...


message 11: by Becky, Ka-Tet (new)

Becky (Beckyofthe19and9) | 2566 comments Yes, you should. It still makes me cringe, even after a dozen readings or so. But it's just... unputdownable.


Ben (OneCoolMonkey) | 34 comments Hmmm...maybe I will add that, then. I've seen that in the dollar bin at Half Price Books several times. I like a good thriller...sounds like it'd be one of those 'quick read' kinds of books.


message 13: by Becky, Ka-Tet (new)

Becky (Beckyofthe19and9) | 2566 comments Yes. It starts with a bang and then just never really lets up. If you hate it, you can totally blame me and hold it against me forever. But it's very unlike Koontz's other books, so I don't think you'd hate it. (I hope.)


message 14: by Lonnie (last edited Sep 24, 2009 11:29AM) (new)

Lonnie | 136 comments Am I having déjà vu or did we not already have a Dean Koontz thread earlier? It sure seems like I remember stating the only book I have never been able to complete was Dragon Tears and that I have such a hard time remembering which stories are which just from the titles. Hmmm… maybe I was dreaming.

But I did LOVE Intensity. The book was one of the best titled books ever! The movie starring Dr. Perry from Scrubs was okay but didn’t quite pull it off. I haven’t seen it but I have heard there is a French movie that is just as intense as the book.



Martin Maher (Martin87) | 72 comments Although I`m no expert on Koontz`s works, I have read a few of his books & have so far been impressed. Part of the reason I decided to read some of his novels is that a lot of people say that if you like King, you`ll probably like Koontz, which I now would agree with. It`s not that they write that similiarly, it`s just that they both have a way of telling a great story, greating wonderful imagery & really capturing your imagination.

I`ve started a monthly read over on the Koontz fan site seen as I have read very little of his works. And like King, he has quite a few under his belt! I got the idea from here (so hats off to you Angie!). The October read is Frankenstein book 1: The Prodigal Son, so if you wish to join in, then please do!
(P.S. Still love King`s writing as well though!)


Dustin Crazy little brown owl (Dustpancrazy) | 150 comments Angie - You are the best!
I love Dean Koontz - I haven't read everything of his but I've read a lot. He writes a lot of cross-genre so I like to say that all of Dean Koontz's books might not be for everyone but I think he has something for everyone. If you like Horror - Intensity is the best. If you like Sci-Fi try Cold Fire, Lightning or By The Light of the Moon. Another favorite of mine is False Memory. His newer books books including the Frankenstein series and Odd Thomas series seem to have a lot of humor in them. Velocity was good the first time I read it - but it's not one of my favorites.

I'm currently re-reading Life Expectancy (the book I recommend the most to new Koontz readers - everytime I read this I call help thinking of Stephen King's "IT" because there are bad clowns in the book. I've only got about 20 pages left and then my focus will go to finishing Carrie - btw I've looked at the inside flap of 'Salems Lot - it looks really good.

I hope to enjoy Stephen King as much as I have enjoyed Dean Koontz. If you want some Koontz advice - Don't bother reading Your Heart Belongs to Me (2008), in my humble opinion, it was one of his worst books and I didn't have high expectations after that - but he surprised me with several good books so far in 2009. Thanks again Angie!


Dustin Crazy little brown owl (Dustpancrazy) | 150 comments Angie - I just wanted to say that I'm truly sorry for making you feel bad. At the time, I just felt like I was being censored and reprimanded on the Stephen King group - seems silly now so I hope we can put that behind us.

Thanks again for giving me this thread as a gift :-) There are only 115 members in the Koontz group - sometimes nothing new there for days at a time so it's nice to see such an active group here with so many different topics. btw I just started a John Saul thread in this same category of "Other Books"


message 18: by Jason "plasborgma" (last edited Sep 25, 2009 10:28AM) (new)

Jason "plasborgma" Cooperrider (plasborgma) | 114 comments Kandice: The title of the book you mentioned is Door to December. It is my least favorite of the approximately 20 DK books I have read so far.

Becky: I am curious about what line in The Taking creeped you out so badly. We have both agreed that it is one of his scariest books...true horror. We have also agreed about the annoying religious nature of the ending, as well as the religious undertone (sometimes overtone) many of his books have taken, which is my biggest qualm about him. Otherwise, I love DK and he is one of my favorite authors.

I just started book 2 of the Frankenstein series last night, after finishing book 1 the day before. I am enjoying the series so far. From the Corner of His Eye remains my favorite DK book, despite the religious aspects that creep into it also.


message 19: by Dustin Crazy little brown owl (last edited Sep 25, 2009 11:45AM) (new)

Dustin Crazy little brown owl (Dustpancrazy) | 150 comments From the Corner of His Eye was very good - I'd like to re-read that one too. I've pretty much decided to re-read my favorites instead of go back and find out which of his earlier works were good (unless of course I hear lots of good things about one particular book).

Dean Koontz is a converted Catholic and his religion plays a very dominant part in all of his books. Most of this doesn't bother me because he puts an interesting spin on things - such as in The Taking, which wasn't one of my favorites but it was an interesting idea.

I haven't read Door to December. If you want a thrill ride - I thought Relentless published this summer, was very fun.
Relentless  A Novel by Dean Koontz


Jason "plasborgma" Cooperrider (plasborgma) | 114 comments Dustin wrote: "...Dean Koontz is a converted Catholic and his religion plays a very dominant part in all of his books...."

Yes, that is unfortunate. I would like to see The Taking made into a movie. I think it is the perfect book for a silver screen conversion.




message 21: by Becky, Ka-Tet (new)

Becky (Beckyofthe19and9) | 2566 comments Dustin wrote: "Dean Koontz is a converted Catholic and his religion plays a very dominant part in all of his books...."

Yes, but there is being religious, which I don't mind in the SLIGHTEST, and then there is being preachy, which I do. When I talk about Koontz in terms of his religion, it's always because I feel like I'm being beat over the head with the symbolism or blatant religiousness of it so that I not only GET it, but AGREE. That's the part that annoys me about it. I've read many, many authors who factor in their religion without being overbearing. Koontz hasn't accomplished that yet for me.


message 22: by Becky, Ka-Tet (new)

Becky (Beckyofthe19and9) | 2566 comments Jason, to answer your question, the part that creeped me out from The Taking was the part in the diner with the doll. *shudder*


Jason "plasborgma" Cooperrider (plasborgma) | 114 comments Becky wrote: "Jason, to answer your question, the part that creeped me out from The Taking was the part in the diner with the doll. *shudder*"

Oh, yes, I recall you saying that now. That was a rather creepy scene.


message 24: by Becky, Ka-Tet (new)

Becky (Beckyofthe19and9) | 2566 comments Yes. It was!


message 25: by Martin (last edited Sep 26, 2009 02:40AM) (new)

Martin Maher (Martin87) | 72 comments Dustin wrote: "Dean Koontz is a converted Catholic and his religion plays a very dominant part in all of his books. Most of this doesn't bother me because he puts an interesting spin on things - such as in The Taking, which wasn't one of my favorites but it was an interesting idea".

I myself am a catholic & my faith is an important part of my life, so I like elements of religion/spirituality in the books I read as well as some elements of the supernatural. But I can see if you`re not that type of person, then that type of writing would be annoying.



Jason "plasborgma" Cooperrider (plasborgma) | 114 comments Martin wrote: "Dustin wrote: "Dean Koontz is a converted Catholic and his religion plays a very dominant part in all of his books. Most of this doesn't bother me because he puts an interesting spin on things - su..."

Yes, Dustin. It is fine that his religion is important to him, but it is inappropriate to me for him to incorporate that so much into his books, which are not supposed to be about religion. It is almost as if he rubs it in the face of his readers at times. It frustrates me and tends to make me role my eyes.


message 27: by Becky, Ka-Tet (new)

Becky (Beckyofthe19and9) | 2566 comments I don't know if I would say that they aren't supposed to be about religion. They are his books after all, so he is the one to decide what they should be about.

But it just seems like they could be so much BETTER if they were about something else, or if he at least toned down the "I'm right and if you don't believe me, this is what will happen to you, HEATHEN!" feeling in them. LOL.


Jason "plasborgma" Cooperrider (plasborgma) | 114 comments Becky wrote: "I don't know if I would say that they aren't supposed to be about religion. They are his books after all, so he is the one to decide what they should be about."

I agree, Becky. What I meant was that they are not portrayed as having a religious element (except for One Door away from Heaven, perhaps), so the reader cannot know if one of his books will have one or not and to what extent.




message 29: by Becky, Ka-Tet (new)

Becky (Beckyofthe19and9) | 2566 comments Jason wrote: "I agree, Becky. What I meant was that they are not portrayed as having a religious element (except for One Door away from Heaven, perhaps), so the reader cannot know if one of his books will have one or not and to what extent. "

Ahh, I get you. Yeah, that is rather annoying when he springs the religion on you at the end. I agree completely.


Betsy Boo (BetsyBoo) | 190 comments I've read quite a few Koontz books...some I like, some I don't. I thought THE TAKING was good and I like the Odd Thomas books.

Hope you don't mind me throwing this out there, but do you remember in IT when Henry Bowers is in the crazy house and Pennywise comes to him as his old friend Vic? Vic wants him to escape and pay back the Loser's club. Henry says, "But I can't get out of here, Vic. There's wire on the windows and Koontz is on the door tonight. Koontz is the worst."
Does anyone think that choice of name is purely coincidence?


message 31: by Becky, Ka-Tet (new)

Becky (Beckyofthe19and9) | 2566 comments I don't remember that at all. Hmm... I'll have to dig out my copy!


Jason "plasborgma" Cooperrider (plasborgma) | 114 comments Both Koontz and King reference each other occasionally in their writing. It is usually in a joking way: insulting each other in a friendly way, like guys often do. I always enjoy it. :-)


Terri (TerriLovesCrows) | 66 comments I would say my favorite Koontz books were Intensity, Whispers and Watchers


message 34: by Angie, Constant Reader (new)

Angie | 2094 comments I have only read Out of the Corner of his Eyes. And that was like in 2001. After reading this thread... I will probably give another book a chance. The Odd Thomas series sounds interesting to me.


Lori (Barfield) I'm a nut case over KING & KOONTZ. They do not write bad books. Only varying degrees of good. If you want evil & scary read Hideaway, you want heroes read The Husband & The Good Guy, want supernatural try Odd Thomas, you want demented read One Door Away From Heaven, and just because it's good read Watchers. And the one with the little girl in the sensory deprivation tank is The Door To December. The list goes on & on i couldn't list them all. But i'm on my way to getting them all. So all you constant readers out there pick one and read it. :o)


Angie crosby (SierraMae) | 10 comments I love the Odd Thomas Series, though the first book is my favorite.

I also love Intensity and Strangers.


Dustin Crazy little brown owl (Dustpancrazy) | 150 comments I prefer Brother Odd, but I'm in the minority on that one :-) We're currently reading False Memory during November in the Dean Koontz group, if you're interested. It's along the lines of Intensity and Strangers if you haven't already read it.

Brother Odd (Odd Thomas, #3) by Dean Koontz False Memory by Dean Koontz


Angie crosby (SierraMae) | 10 comments I may join that group. That is a good book.


Dustin Crazy little brown owl (Dustpancrazy) | 150 comments If you join the group - Monthly group read for December is currently being voted on in the polls but voting only lasts 2 days - November 8th and 9th - December book will be announced on Nov. 10th. I'm a little past half-way on False Memory.


Angie crosby (SierraMae) | 10 comments I did just join and voted already. Now I just have to locate my copy of False Memory, it's around here somewhere.


Lori (Barfield) Been there, done that. See you over there guys.


Tom Mueller | 305 comments Jason wrote: "his books, which are not supposed to be about religion..."

Key word here being "his"
I would not presume to give an opinion on what any authors work is supposed to be about.


message 43: by Jason "plasborgma" (last edited Nov 18, 2009 05:08PM) (new)

Jason "plasborgma" Cooperrider (plasborgma) | 114 comments Tom wrote: "Key word here being "his"
I would not presume to give an opinion on what any authors work is supposed to be about."


As I explained before, what I meant by "supposed to be about" is that it was nowhere described that theism would play a significant role in the story. I agree that any author should be able to write about anything he/she wants to and I encourage him/her to do so, but I think it is also respectful to the readers to disclose the topic, rather than blindsiding them with pontifications. You are welcome to disagree with that opinion.


Tom Mueller | 305 comments We'll probably politely agree to disagree on this one then, but I do understand your point.
SK said the other night that any good book has to be "about something".

POSSIBLE SPOILER BELOW
An example: UTD is about pollution, politics, corruption of the powerful, religion, and drugs; none of which are the 'stated topic' of UTD.
POSSIBLE SPOILER ABOVE


Jason "plasborgma" Cooperrider (plasborgma) | 114 comments Tom wrote: "...POSSIBLE SPOILER BELOW
An example: UTD is about pollution, politics, corruption of the powerful, religion, and drugs; none of which are the 'stated topic' of UTD.
POSSIBLE SPOILER ABOVE"


I just started UTD last night, so I am looking forward to coming across the topics you mentioned and others like them. SK does a good job of touching on interesting and controversial topics in his works. DK on the other hand, as much as I love his writing, tends to integrate theism throughout many of his books (e.g., The Taking), sort of beating the reader over the head with it. Becky and I have discussed that here (in this group) several times now. It certainly will not prevent me from reading a DK book and I am no longer quite as annoyed by it, now that I know to expect it.



Leslie (LeslieHW) | 126 comments Skip skip skip The funhouse. Awful awful awful book. One Amazon reviewer said 'did Koontz let r.l. Stein write this book? I agree completely.


Jason "plasborgma" Cooperrider (plasborgma) | 114 comments Leslie wrote: "Skip skip skip The funhouse. Awful awful awful book. One Amazon reviewer said 'did Koontz let r.l. Stein write this book? I agree completely. "

I haven't read that one. It is a low priority for me, based on what I know of the plot, and I may never read it.


jzhunagev | 54 comments Just a quick question to Dean Koontz fans out there... Is his book Cold Fire that good, if not great? Thanks... I'm kinda hoping to get a good start to his novels. And I just bought this one, but I'm having some reservations about it...
Thanks... ^^,


Jason "plasborgma" Cooperrider (plasborgma) | 114 comments jzhunagev wrote: "Just a quick question to Dean Koontz fans out there... Is his book Cold Fire that good, if not great? Thanks... I'm kinda hoping to get a good start to his novels. And I just bought th..."

I've heard from several people that it is good, though I have not yet read it myself. I am fairly certain that Dustin has read it and enjoyed it, so I hope he chimes in to answer your question.


message 50: by Chris , The Hardcase (new)

Chris  (haughtc) | 868 comments jzhunagev wrote: "Just a quick question to Dean Koontz fans out there... Is his book Cold Fire that good, if not great? Thanks... I'm kinda hoping to get a good start to his novels. And I just bought th..."

I read it several years ago and from what I can remember, it was very enjoyable. Quick paced and all that.


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Odd Thomas (other topics)
Life Expectancy (other topics)
Velocity (other topics)
Watchers (other topics)
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