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What the Night Knows | [Dean Koontz]

What the Night Knows

In the late summer of a long-ago year, a killer arrived in a small city. His name was Alton Turner Blackwood, and in the space of a few months he brutally murdered four families. His savage spree ended only when he himself was killed by the last survivor of the last family, a 14-year-old boy. Half a continent away and two decades later, someone is murdering families again, re-creating in detail Blackwood’s crimes.
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Publisher's Summary

In the late summer of a long-ago year, a killer arrived in a small city. His name was Alton Turner Blackwood, and in the space of a few months he brutally murdered four families. His savage spree ended only when he himself was killed by the last survivor of the last family, a 14-year-old boy.

Half a continent away and two decades later, someone is murdering families again, re-creating in detail Blackwood’s crimes. Homicide detective John Calvino is certain that his own family — his wife and three children — will be targets in the fourth crime, just as his parents and sisters were victims on that distant night when he was 14 and killed their slayer.

As a detective, John is a man of reason who deals in cold facts. But an extraordinary experience convinces him that sometimes death is not a one-way journey, that sometimes the dead return.

Here is a ghost story like no other you have read. In the Calvinos, Dean Koontz brings to life a family that might be your own, in a war for their survival against an adversary more malevolent than any he has yet created, with their own home the battleground. Of all his acclaimed novels, none exceeds What the Night Knows in power, in chilling suspense, and in sheer mesmerizing storytelling.

©2010 Dean Koontz (P)2010 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

What the Critics Say

“Dean Koontz... has the power to scare the daylights out of us.” (People)

“Koontz seems to know us, our deepest foibles and fears.” (USA Today)

“Koontz writes first-rate suspense, scary and stylish.” (Los Angeles Times)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.8 (1650 )
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3.8 (855 )
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4.2 (838 )
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    sadee poulsen 12-30-10 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Koontz is back!"

    I have read all of the Koontz books,new and old, and was disappointed in the last few but "What the night knows" brought back the Koontz I love to read or listen to. Very enjoyable.

    40 of 42 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michelle 12-31-10
    Michelle 12-31-10

    dannyzlady

    HELPFUL VOTES
    87
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    20
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    "One of the better Koontz books"

    Yes, he's wordy and overly descriptive. It's his style. If you don't like it, don't read a Koontz book. But if you do like his style and his books, you will love this book. I didn't find it predictable at all. The narrator was perfect and drew me into the story and kept me totally entertained. I'm ready to start listening to it all over again.

    29 of 31 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Suzn F Fletcher, VT, US 01-08-11
    Suzn F Fletcher, VT, US 01-08-11 Member Since 2013

    I believe a reviewer should finish a book before submitting a review. What do you think?

    HELPFUL VOTES
    2814
    ratings
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    777
    173
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    22
    Overall
    "Koontz fan... but...."

    I really love this author, he has written some of my all time favorite mysteries. This time however, I must agree with some of the other disappointed reviewers. Although the plot was fairly interesting on it's own, I agree that this story has some of the same aspects of the more recent novels, perfect marriage, perfect kids, rich rich family, fancy house with extra security, etc, etc. The novel lacked depth and intrigue for me, sorry. I too found it all too predictable and would be happy to welcome back Odd Thomas or something new that would remind us all of why we love this author so much. This novel pales in comparison to From the Corner of his Eye in my opinion. Still, I'm glad to have listened.

    21 of 23 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Derek B. A strange midwestern city, United States 02-20-11
    Derek B. A strange midwestern city, United States 02-20-11 Member Since 2015

    It's simple really, I am just a guy looking to enjoy the writing and reading talents of others while raising my family the best I can, just Like most everyone else!!!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    670
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    39
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    "I LOVED it!"

    This was a very good book. If you have read a lot of Dean Koontz books then you are used to the super-natural aspect that they sometimes have. I would suggest not reading them if you can not free up your mind a little because some on them, like this one, require an open mind for a part or two! If you can do that just a little then this book won't disapoint, but if you have to understand the science behind every aspect of a book then you will have a moment or 3 that will have you unhappy. Again, I loved this book and I look forward to the next one.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christine Whitewater, WI, United States 12-30-10
    Christine Whitewater, WI, United States 12-30-10 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
    22
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    "What the Night Knows - predictable"

    Dean Koontz's novel, "What the Night Knows" although entertaining is somewhat predictable. Mr. Murder and Darkfall, both about families with children in danger. Father and partner (Wife or girlfriend) work to gether to save children. All contain a phsycopath out to kill the family for something the father has done or is preceived to have done.

    Enjoyable read? Yes
    Filled with the unexpected - Absolutely not.

    22 of 25 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bob North Lauderdale, FL, United States 01-08-11
    Bob North Lauderdale, FL, United States 01-08-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "He's back"

    What a disturbing book. I wonder how he thinks up story lines like this. The old Dean Koontz is definitely back. It is well written and narrated. If you want to be terrorized, this book is for you.

    9 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jim "The Impatient" Springfield, MO, United States 12-15-12
    Jim "The Impatient" Springfield, MO, United States 12-15-12 Member Since 2015

    I will listen to NO boring book. Old Fav's,Card, King , Hobb. New Fav's, Hill, Scalzi, Sawyer, Interested in Lansdale, Crouch, Konrath

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "As Ambitious as a Dung Beetle"

    Some authors scare you by having things jump out at you and sometimes Koontz does that. This is another one of those books where the victim knows ahead of time he is going to be a victim, he even knows the time and place, yet he can't seem to do anything about it. What could be more agonizing then the expectation of horror?

    Koontz develops characters that you love and root for. Three children are in this book, a thirteen, Eleven and Eight year old. Koontz remembers the perfect love of a 13 year old boy, before he knows lust. The eleven year old girl, who fantasizes about being a princess and how children seem to think that good things are just going to happen to them. The hero of the story is the eight year old, who has more common sense then any of them. It seems also that Koontz is mourning the lost of a favorite dog in this story. There is a conversation on faith and the enemy within.

    A voice is given to evil and Koontz explores again inbreeding.

    The important thing about Koontz is that he entertains, first and foremost. With most of his books you will not get bored. There seems to be two types of Koontz fans, those who love the Odd series and those who love his other works best. I fall in the latter.

    Here are my favorite Koontz books in order: The Bad Place, Lightning, Frankenstein: Lost Souls, Frankenstein: Prodigal Son, What The Night Knows, Phantoms, Darkness Under The Sun, Dragon Tears, By the LIght Of The Moon, and Life Expectancy.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Janice Sugar Land, TX, United States 03-09-11
    Janice Sugar Land, TX, United States 03-09-11 Member Since 2010

    Rating scale: 5=Loved it, 4=Liked it, 3=Ok, 2=Disappointed, 1=Hated it. I look for well developed characters, compelling stories.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Non-starter"

    I have been somewhat disappointed with the last few Koontz books, but this one just plain fell flat. After a relatively promising start, I felt that he quickly telegraphed how the plot would proceed, but took a rambling route to get going. I particularly tired of the childrens' annoying conversations and the degree to which he went to rationalize why this close knit, loving family did not let each other know of the strange and menacing events going on in their house. I could not buy into the notion that the father, having already figured out the danger looming in and the likely date that disaster would hit, would do nothing to rally the family together to protect each other. In fairness, perhaps he eventually does, but I wouldn't be aware of it because just half way through part one, in spite of best intentions, I haven't been motivated to return to the story. While a certain amount of drawing out the tension adds to enjoyment of a story, there is a line that can be crossed that makes it tedious waiting for something to happen - you just want the characters to catch up with what the reader has already figured out. Perhaps I'll return, but it's not likely to be soon. I'm on to something else.

    7 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Angel Asheville, NC 01-11-11
    Angel Asheville, NC 01-11-11 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Again?"

    What happened to the author of Watchers, Strangers, Intensity and From the Corner of His Eye? I've always said that you can tell a story that Koontz really wants to tell and one he's only writing for the pay check. This is the latter. Yet another family set against Hell with Heaven intervening at the last moment. He even says Deus ex Machina! I've had cause to wonder at the over blown prose shift and story vacuity of Koontz in the last several years perhaps he is burnt out and should take a break. Either way, I'm sorry I wasted a credit on this book. If you're looking for a feel good, cookie cutter, Koontz this is for you, if not don't bother.

    I was hoping for Koontz at his best and instead I got Koontz at, while maybe not his worst, certainly at a low point.

    12 of 16 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Darren Oshawa, ON, Canada 08-29-11
    Darren Oshawa, ON, Canada 08-29-11 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
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    "Where has Dean Koontz gone?"

    I read approx. 50 books/year and can count on 1 hand the number of books that I have not completed. Add this one though. Poor effort in every respect other than the narrator does a good job, with what he has to work with.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
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  • Ian
    1/26/11
    Overall
    "Great Listen"

    I'm still slightly nervous when I hear noises around the house, I finished the book three days ago!
    I couldn't stop listening, one of the best ghost stories I've heard. I've had mixed success with Dean Koontz books but this will definitely get me buying more.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Kaggy
    United Kingdom
    12/14/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Unpleasant"

    Okay I should have known what to expect. I am after all no stranger to the horror genre. There was nothing however in this story that got me hooked and it was all a bit too silly for me to want to read it to the end.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Derek
    Maspujols, Spain
    4/22/11
    Overall
    "Koontz quality"

    I first got hooked on Koontz's deft storytelling skill after his novella Black River, and this is another fine release. As with some of his other works, I find myself wanting to hear it faster than it is read - it is so exciting. Well worth getting!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Stephen
    Tempsford, United Kingdom
    4/16/11
    Overall
    "What on earth!"

    I bought this book after reading 'Watchers' again by Dean Kootz.
    I've read quite a few of his books and although most are somewhat difficult to get into on the whole they've been thoroughly enjoyable.
    So I wasn't too concerned when this book started meandering around, well, I got about a third way into part 2 of the book and started to think what on earth is going on, I kept going back through the book listening again trying to make some sense of it till I suddenly realised that I didn't care what happened.
    And that's where I am todate, the first audible book that I haven't finished.
    My opinion is it's a complete waste of time and money.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Alison
    Fraserburgh, United Kingdom
    4/1/11
    Overall
    "Gruesome but good"

    This story is a thriller with supernatural and horror elements. Fans of Koontz will enjoy it though it is a bit more gruesome than many of his books. A gripping tale and well read.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Caroline
    ambleside, United Kingdom
    2/11/11
    Overall
    "Awsome"

    Its been a lot of years since I had read a Dean Koontz book. I just wanted something a little different. Amazed how good the book was, I really was gripped to my seat and could not stop listening.

    Good characters, good story, brilliantly read

    I have now gone and purchased some more dean koontz

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Adaline
    Ireland
    7/9/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Slow to start but worth staying the course."

    It took me several attempts to get through this book. The first half is boring, drifting, and difficult. However, the second part more than makes up for this, in my opinion.
    As soon as it took off, it was nailbitingly thrilling. As in most Koontz books, the end was unpredictable.
    It's definitely not one of his best, and I am sad to say that I have another few in my library waiting to be finished.
    I think he is losing his magic touch.
    However, if you can endure the first half of this strange tell, the second part will reward your persistence.
    The narration is excellent.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mr
    Worcester, United Kingdom
    6/21/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Mystiriously Entertaining"
    What did you like most about What the Night Knows?

    I enjoyed this book throughout. Although this is the first Dean Koontz book I have come across, I must say it is well written and narrated. The build up toward the tense parts of the story, are also good. Although favourite part has to be the ending. When the family realize that they have a polterguist stalking their house.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of What the Night Knows?

    The ending. When the family realize that they have a polterguist stalking their house.


    If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    A mysterious bone chilling thriller.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Robert
    BARRY, Vale of Glamorgan, United Kingdom
    4/16/11
    Overall
    "What the Night Knows (Unabridged)" by Dean Koontz"

    yet another great book from Dean Koontz, good story line with twists through out. kept my attention all the way through the book. Loved it. 10/10

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • David
    Nr Taunton, United Kingdom
    4/10/11
    Overall
    "Uber titresome"

    One of the very very few audio boks I've ever given up on and gone and done something else! Just couldn't pick it up once I'd put it down! Other people obviously like it so it must be me, but what a waste of a credit!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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