Hooray for Odd Thomas That s really his name, by the way.Dean Koontz has made a winner with this 2003 publication that spawned ten other works as of 2015 and a 2013 film.First of all, Koontz crafted in Odd a very likeable hero Notice I did not use the term protagonist, as Odd is a real hero, doing what is right, having fun with it, and being an all around great guy Odd s heroism is emphasized by his comparison to his thoroughly unlikeable and completely unsympathetic parents By showing us Odd s parents, Koontz also adds depth and character to the already interesting storyline.And he sees dead people.Odd also sees what he calls bodachs These are wolfish, shadowy creatures of unknown origin that might be demons, or they might be something else Koontz creation of these beings allows him to maximize the creepy factor of this horror thriller paranormal thoroughly unique and way cool narrative The Bodachs also allow a furtherance of Koontz brilliant use of foreshadowing In one respect, the shade like bodachs may be the literary embodiment of foreshadowing and Koontz even allows a brief description of the beasts that suggests this.Odd also has a sixth sense, what he calls psychic magnetism that allows him a fun perspective on all the supernatural shenanigans going on.Finally, Odd Thomas is simply a well put together and charismatic good read. Odd Thomas is a 20 year old fry cook, and he can see dead people It s either a gift or a curse In less than twenty four hours, Pico Mundo will awaken to a day of catastrophe, and it s up to Odd to try and prevent it The thing with this novel is that the plot was terribly slow Koontz served up a lot of character building, a lot being the first 1 3 of the novel That is pretty normal, but the result should be satisfactory While I am really liking Odd as a character, I just don t see him as a 20 year old kid He seemed like someone who s 30 years old He seemed to have so much knowledge crammed in his 20 year old brain It s just not normal I m 19 years old, and I don t think like he does He was planning marriage as soon as possible, and that is really not normal Stormy was also quite unrealistic I don t see why she keeps up with Odd, to be honest I didn t hate her as a character, but I didn t like her much, compared to otherlover of the main charactercharacters.Like I said the plot was slow, and at the time wherein it improved, it was still lacking This is shelved as horror, and 1018 people contributed to that happening I don t see this as horror at all Paranormal maybe, because of the ghosts, but even the possibility of the things that happened in the novel happening in real life is quite unlikely I liked the wholeI can talk to ghoststhing Koontz made, but it hasn t grown on me yet This is the first novel though, and I m expecting the next one to be a huge improvement.Whenever I ask people to recommend another author who is quite similar to my favorite, Stephen King, the immediate answer would be Dean Koontz He does write horror books, and a lot of paranormal ones too, but if I were to judge that comparison based on Odd Thomas, I would honestly say that I can t see the similarities Koontz writes a lot of info dumps, and takes forever to make the reader like the character s for me I keep hearing amazing things about his other novels though, so I might have to give those a try before concluding The first novel of his that I ve read was not the best, but I m not giving up on the author, and the series.3 5 stars Mediocre plot and quite likeable but unrealistic characters I m hoping to have a better opinion and experience with the second novel. I usually do not read supernatural books When I read Chain Letter 2 back in high school, I went against popular opinion and rated Chain Letter 1 higher, because 2 was a premise with supernatural events.Back to Odd Thomas, I loved reading even the low key chapters Dean Koontz has a knack for oozing interesting things from even the most mundane thoughts or settings.I feared who would die in the end, and I was surprised I cried like a kid and I recommend Odd Thomas, and I m going to read book 2 for sure, sooner or later These days I rarely cry because of books, but here I was overcome. Best Read of 2004 Wow What a way to start a new year This is the first book I ve read by Dean Koontz and I m kicking myself in the behind for overlooking the man for some many years After this review, I will make it a point to get my hands on a copy of everything the man has ever written I first mentioned this book to my ex husband after coming across it in the bookstore early December Back cover seemed interesting enough but, not being a fan of Koontz, I decided to put it on my wish list A few days later, my husband handed me the book God Bless The Man grin and with the first words My name is Odd Thomas I was hooked There are no simple words to describe this book it is a literary masterpiece There were times when I forgot that I was reading a book and felt as if I were reading a memoir of sorts in fact, it is from this view that Odd presents his story to the reader You not only get to know each of the different characters Odd encounters in his life each unique in their own ways but you begin to care about what happens to these people Many times I held my breath, struggling to keep my eyes from leaping to the paragraph below to see what fate awaited a member of Odd s family I ve read some pretty good books in 04 but one of my biggest complaints have been that the books start off very well but I find myself rushing through the ending I clung to every word in this book, sometimes stopping to savor a particular phrase delivered by the narrator And the ending delivered Man, the writing is nothing less than awesome So simplistic and yet so genius Hats off to Mr Dean Koontz for a magnificent job I ve not read much Koontz but this seemed like a popular one, I m even planning to watch the film afterwards.I liked how the story was narrated through Odd, it was really easy to get a feel for the character Whilst working as a short order cook young Odd has the ability to see dead people, I instantly thought of Sixth Sense.In truth this novel reminded me of a few other well known books, the most obvious being Stephen King s The Dead Zone as Odd has a premonition that something bad is about to happen.One of the ghosts that hangs around near Odd is a well known celebrity, I won t spoil the surprise but he has also appeared in another supernatural book series.Even though it felt like treading old ground, Odd is such a great character who I was happy to spend time with.I definitely want to readKoontz, I d be happy to continue with this series. This book wasn t supposed to make me cry This book was supposed to be simple, mindless fun I wasn t supposed to fall in love with the tortured and unloved by family Odd This story was supposed to be easy So why am I still crying I had not asked to be born Only to be loved. Review to come. 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, Stormy LlewellynMaybe 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 DifferentA 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 Today Is August 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 As a kid, the first thing I did when I was coming back from school was stop by at the library I used to check out various mystery novels like those with The Three Investigators, a saga that has remained a favorite and to this day I m fond of it and one day the librarian God bless her decided that I was mature enough meaning I started growing whiskers and recommended Stephen King.Needless to say, I started to read one King book after the other in quick succesion, sometimes even two at the same time I was addicted, much like a heroin addict that needs his fix, I checked out a new King book every day And then came the unavoidable sad day when there were no new books by King on the library shelf Since my memories were still too vivid for a re read, I decided to look for a new author who has released many interesting titles tha would interest a lad like me I asked the everhelpful librarian, and she pointed me to a shelf directly below the one of the King.It was labeled Dean R Koontz.I checked out my first book by the smiling bald guy with a moustache can t remember what it was , took it home and read quickly I felt that it was missing something, but still I was entertained enough to come back and check out another And then another I ve read over a dozen or so of his titles, when new books by King came into library I checked them out, but from that time on I switched between the two authors just for the fun of it Koontz was my bubble gum tasty, but the taste evaporated quickly and you had to take another if you wanted to enjoy it again.I think I ll spare you the rest of my life story and get on with reviewing the book I bought Odd Thomas the year it came out or was it a year later Can t remember Every reviewer was raving about it which I found surprising Koontz was always a low key author, and never received much publicity despite being one of the highest earning American writers He was the sort of guy who was always there but didn t stick his head out, always had a personal shelf at the library, always released a book each year that you could read, forget and then remember about him when he released a new one So when Odd Thomas caught attention by many reviewers on various web sites I decided to check it out myself I bough an used copy through the web, received it, sat in my favorite armchair and began to read.Odd Thomas, proudly bearing the title of a novel is written from the perspective of a 20 year old Odd, a guy who can see dead peopleand does something about it The first person narrative has been done by Koontz before, most notably in Fear Nothing and Seize The Night the reader can t help but notice the similarities in style and form.Since Odd Thomas is a character driven novel, maybe we should begin by saying something about them Characterization was always Koontz s Achilles heel, and unfortunately it shows in this book Odd is the type of a literary 20 year old written by a 60 something year old who thinks he can write a cute,sympathetic and witty 20 year old and at the same time slip in some of his disdain for the modern times Odd doesn t come out as cute and eccentric though rather boring and preachy A self procclaimed carryover from the 50 s, Odd lives in the new millenium and stays alive only by listening to Elvis who also has a supporting role as a ghost and is heavy on keeping his virginity Did he forgot that the 50 s brough the baby boomers Was he ever in school 20 year olds don t talk like this, don t think like this and most importantly don t sound like Dean Koontz.Speaking of whom, everyone in this novel sounds like Dean Koontz or if he doesn t then he s the bad guy Koontz simplifies the matter to the utmost everyone either falls in love with Odd, or is concerned by fulfilling his own hedonistic pursuits Odd s literary, obese friend Little Ozzie is essentially Koontz with opened Wikipedia, and shooting random facts and quotations Not to mention that he STILL cannot make people talk like real peopleonly his impressions of them When will he learn I ve heard comparisons between Odd Thomas and M.Night Shyamalan s famous movie The Sixth Sense They are without substance The Sixth Sense is one of the most moving and memorable motion pictures I have ever seen In Odd Thomas seeing dead people serves as Koontz s remedy of getting out from various plot holes as does having a blind friend who can read a braille card Odd has just found, etc.The writing style is largely intrusive, overtly verbose and tedious Instead of using simple descriptions that worked so well in the past Koontz seems content with opening his thesauruses and conjuring up metaphors that completely break the flow of the story Not that there s much of the story going on it s constantly interrupted by Koontz s inclusion of various facts about the average number of people being born with six fingers, the biographies of Elvis and Sinatra and even the explanation of various commands shouted at the grille where Odd works they really weren t that hard to figure out That s Dean s biggest problems he not only shows but also tells, tells and tells to be sure you got his point.The biggest flaw of the book is the narration method At the beginning, Koontz states EXPLICITLY that Odd will be an unreliable narrator, and even says what exactly he will do to make his narration unreliable He also spoils the classic Christie novel and reveals the murdered, in case you didn t get his point This is stupid beyond redemption The sole point of employing an unreliable narrator in fiction is not letting the audience know that there is one Well, Koontz seems to not notice this after over four decades of writing 15 hours a day, and the big surprise at the end comes as a yawn.The identity of the evildoers is very disappointing, and the ending confrontation is solved way too fast and way too easy.Overall, the experience is disappointing There is an interesing story hidden in Odd Thomas the one you used to watch as a kid, in shows like Goosebumps but Odd Thomas is marketed at an adult audience, and fails as adult fiction because of Koontz s ineptitude at drawing realistic, likeable characters and writing dialogue he s truly horrible at it , his tedious writing style and his mistrust of the audience he truly does spell out every single thing in detail As a children book it fails too, because of Koontz s inclusion of gruesome details of various crimes, which were supposed to be shocking and mature but turn out to be boring instead If he only cut up the metaphors, created stronger characters who behave and talk like normal people Odd Thomas might have been an enjoyable bus book It just needs too much suspension of disbelief to be read It s still better than all the sequels though, which make me think When will Koontz stop cashing in on this fluke and start writing like he did in the 80 s I don t like the work of this new guy with a clean shaven sagging face and a mop of fake hair. This was one weird story that ramped up to great 4 star finish I was skeptical through the first 3 4 of the book or so, I even had a hard time staying interested, but the end was great I look forward toin the series. My sister and I listened to this in the car on our trips around town In that week orwe spent together, I felt like Odd became part of my life I was rather sad when it ended I appreciated the audiobook format very much I think it was very immersive, and Koontz words were very poetic Odd is such a unique guy He s got a pure heart and that s saying something His gift has made his life very difficult, but he doesn t take it like a curse It s his life, and he takes ownership of that He protects his town of Pico Mundo with a steadfast and vigilant dedication, and his only aspiration in life is to be with his true love, Stormy Llewellyn Odd Thomas is a story about a young man who sees ghosts and who does his part to resolve what has wronged them When he meets a very strange man on what seems like a typical day, his life will change inevitably This book takes place over a short few days, but they are action packed days for Odd and the reader He s trying to solve a mystery What is drawing all these boggarts, which are dark spirits that Odd sees when something bad is going to happen The weird man that Odd calls Fungus Man has so many around him that it makes Odd suspicious, and when he goes to the man s house, he sees something terrible, that makes Odd s fears for the town grow exponentially This suspense thread goes throughout the book and leads to a dramatic conclusion.Odd is a bit of an unlikely hero, but he is perfectly suited to be the hero of this novel His way of processing things is very down to earth but quite brilliant I love a good mystery with an intelligent sleuth, and while this is a ghost story, this is also a good suspense story.It s also heartbreaking because you know that no matter what Odd does, people are going to die He can only minimize the damage In that sense, and in others, Odd is a very tragic hero When the reader gets a glimpse at Odd s family life, it makes you wonder how this young man can be so well adjusted, friendly, oddly hopeful, and in his own way content But the good news is although his family is pretty awful, he has formed his own family of friends who love him deeply Odd Thomas is different for Koontz, but some of those touches that are so integral to his style are there This is like his version of the coming of age novel, with a boy man who sees ghosts and rights their wrongs, his typical sicko villain I recommend reading this, and if you can get the audiobook version, I especially recommend that.