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.
©2003 Dean Koontz; (P)2003 Random House, Inc., Random House Audio, A Division Of Random House, Inc.
"Once in a very great while, an author does everything right, as Koontz has in this marvelous novel....This is Koontz working at his pinnacle." (Publishers Weekly)
"A curious mixture of whimsy, gentle humor, and horror...It is the casual weirdness on display here, rife with bodachs and other signs of a Vonnegut-style fancifulness, that gives Odd Thomas its principal appeal." (The New York Times)
"This quirky and touching story of a 20-year-old short order cook with paranormal abilities is spun with stylistic grace by Dean Koontz, and read in an innocent, unaffected style by David Aaron Baker." (AudioFile)
San Diego Guy
Having read a few of his earlier works, I quickly grew weary Dean Koontz novels and by the time I started my fourth, I quit before finishing it. Several years (about 15 or so) have since passed and I decided to give him another try - especially after reading some of the reviews posted here.
I was very disappointed with Odd Thomas. The supernatural gimmick here seemed even more gimmicky than some of his older works, and the story itself was superficial and certainly not compelling. There was no taking the long way home, or lingering in my car in our driveway with this audio book.
I really tried hard to like this book, but I was actually glad when this book ended. Sorry Mr. Koontz .
The narrator livedly takes you on a journey that you do not want to end. I listen as I drive to work and I found myself leaving home earlier and driving slower so that I could hear more of this awesome tale.
Kneel Before Zod!!
The twist at the ending, and the narration style of the story seemed as if the character was rambling.
Wow, I didn't see that coming.
He made a close to boring narration style story a bit more interesting.
It is a movie and that's why I listened to the book,now I will watch the movie.
There seems to be no good storyline...it just drones on with Odd Thomas' thoughts. Boring.
I'd start over, make Odd Thomas more interesting, maybe a little humorous.
But the ending climax and wrap up were very good. Told in first person. I’ve given high ratings to many first person books, but this did not work for me. I was aware of “myself” too much, as if Odd were talking to me as we walked around together. Koontz has written some third person stories that drew me in a lot more than this.
Parts were slow or dragged. I was following Odd around as he described and interacted with different characters living in a small town. He saw bodachs in some places which were a predictor of evil to come. Bodachs are shadow creatures who watch but do not touch. Odd had the ability to see and interact with ghosts of dead people. He felt a moral obligation to use his gift for good.
I liked two things. The ending climax was excellent. Something exciting/horrible was happening. Odd took risks, took action, and did unexpected things. It was a good ending for the good guys, but there was sadness because someone died who I didn’t want to die. When a favorite character dies in other books, I’m usually depressed. This didn’t depress me as much, maybe because I wasn’t drawn into the story as much.
I was fascinated with Odd’s mother. I admire Koontz for coming up with this creative, not been done before (that I’ve seen) wacko, crazy character. This mother was horrible! She never wanted to care for another human being - especially her one child. As a child when Odd was sick, she threatened to kill herself or him if he didn’t be quiet. His coughing and moaning were a nonverbal request for help. This stressed her. She didn’t want to hear it and she didn’t want to help. When Odd had to go to the hospital for appendicitis, the neighbor (or someone else) took him. The mother refused to go. Her dialogue shocked me.
The narrator David Aaron Baker was fine.
Genre: paranormal mystery suspense.
Ending: good guys win, but somewhat sad due to a death.
I am a fan of Koontz, so I was looking forward to listening to this book. Although good, I found myself wishing that he would just get on with the story. "Odd" is a great character and the story line was intruiging, but...
Put it to you this way. If the character needed to run down a long hall-way to get to the last room, he would inevitably stop at each door along the way and describe, in detail, the entire room and the history behind every object there in, if it mattered to the story or not.
Although Koontz does repeat himself often--perhaps for emphasis?--The character of Odd Thomas is delightful and David Allen Baker does a more than commendable job of bringing Odd to life. I was not aware that this book was in the supernatural genre, yet I enjoyed Baker's reading so much, I listened to Forever Odd as well.
The story was okay, but Koontz's main character tends to digress into meaningless reminiscences, wasting time and placing himself in harms way for no particular reason. One minute he is nervously looking at his watch fearing that time is slipping away and the next he visits his worthless father, gives us his biography in a nutshell, has a meaningless conversation with Dad's brain-dead girlfriend, then goes to visit his insane mother. He does this while fearing he is the only one who may keep many people from dying and is running out of time. While the story was generally good, I frequently found myself getting bored, especially toward the end, as he goes on and on about his thoughts on life while I waited for the story to progress. The character's speech is peppered with trite metaphors, especially at tense times when these devises would normally flee from speech. Rather than adding to character development this just gets old. Better to get the book than the audio version. There is a great deal here that you will want to skip over.
I enjoyed this book, but not 5-stars worth. I would recommend it, but doubt I would ever bother to listen to it again (which is a pre-requisite for 5 stars). I have read many of Dean Koontz's books, and didn't care for many of them. I would rank this as one of his better books...right up there with "Watchers."
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