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Publisher's Summary

They were strangers.....
A handful of people, from different backgrounds, living in different towns and cities across America, they had nothing in common - except fear.

They were victims....
Cold and stark, an unknown terror gripped their dreams and turned their days into living nightmares.

They were chosen....
And they could not escape. Deep in the heart of a sprawling desert, a dark memory called out to them, drawing them to the Tranquility Motel - where the terrifying truth was waiting.

©2008 Dean Koontz; (P)2008 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"With its masterful blend of elements of espionage, terror, and even some science fiction, Strangers may be the suspense novel of the year." (Library Journal)
"The plot twists ingeniously...chilling." (The New York Times Book Review)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.1 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    1,042
  • 4 Stars
    748
  • 3 Stars
    379
  • 2 Stars
    146
  • 1 Stars
    62

Performance

  • 4.3 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    796
  • 4 Stars
    439
  • 3 Stars
    184
  • 2 Stars
    61
  • 1 Stars
    31

Story

  • 4.2 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    774
  • 4 Stars
    419
  • 3 Stars
    219
  • 2 Stars
    70
  • 1 Stars
    42
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  • Overall

It depends on your personality I guess

I listen to audiobooks in the car on the way to work and back which equals about 1-1/4 hours of listening each day. So a book this long (29 hours) will take me about 4-1/2 weeks to finish.

I've listened to several different readers over the past few years and would give the narrator of this one an average score, say three out of five stars. He does most of the characters reasonably well and has a little trouble with the women voices (but he is a guy with a deep voice so go figure). Generally for me the narrator thing is a non-issue, he doesn't ruin the book in my opinion, and he doesn't make a bad book good (I'm not saying this is a bad book, just that his reading wouldn't make it better if it was).

The book itself has excellent character development and the characters are very believable. They seem like real people with real thoughts and are not superficial or outrageously successful, or "super people", which makes them believable.

Yes this book is long, but so are other books with a lot of detail, which brings me back to my title. If your personality is such that you must move quickly through a book and don't care about character development details but want to get to the action, then either skip this book or wait for an abridged version.

However, if you are like me and can grow to like a story because you grow to understand and then like the characters, then this book is for you.

Bottom line: if you are patient, can delay gratification and like a good mystery, then you will like this book. If you are impatient and need more instant gratification, then you probably better skip it.

49 of 51 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Wesley
  • RICHMOND, TX, USA
  • 08-21-08

Good story!

Not really a big Koontz fan but I have to say I really enjoyed this story. The characters seemed to more flesh and blood than is typically the case with Koontz stories. The pace of the story was perfect and the conclusion was great. I highly recommend this book to anyone looking for good adventure.

15 of 15 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Brilliant

20+ years ago, when already a Dean Koontz fan (Whispers, Phantoms), I read, and fell in love with, Strangers. This is the author's epic novel of friendship and hope, sometimes predictable, often suspenseful, always thought-provoking. After reading it the first time, I wondered what treatment it could be given on the big screen by a director like Spielberg. But the story is far too big for a movie, rather it could (and should) be filmed as a TV mini-series. Take note, SciFi Channel! I did find the narration a little slow at times, and didn't approve of all of the characterizations, but after listening for a few hours I became very comfortable with the reader and give him a big 'thumbs up'! For anyone that doesn't balk at a 29-hour listen, this is an outstanding choice. Those that choose not to listen are missing a wonderful experience.

34 of 36 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Best Koontz book ever

This is great entertainment! The characters are interesting and well-developed. The dialog flows easily and enhances the story, and it is read beautifully, each character with a distinct voice. The plot has many twists and turns that keep you wanting more. A great read.

17 of 18 people found this review helpful

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  • Story

Dos Equis

Let me say it again, I am a Koontz fan. He is one of my favorites, yet this book will put you to sleep. I listened to 19 hours of this 29 hour snail paced nothing happening book. 19 hours, just ten hours to go and I could not hack it. Knowing that Koontz often has twists at the end of his books, I was looking at listening a whole day to this and could not do it.

FIBBING IS NOT ACCEPTABLE
It could be argued that this has character development. The way in which he develops the characters is simplistic. One guy was in Vietnam and so we have a long drawn out history on him. One girl was abused by her dad, so we have a long drawn out history on her. This is not the way you develop characters. Characters are developed through the story. George R.R. Martin, Robin Hobb, and Orson Scott Card are the Character development experts and it is not done through long histories on each and every character. This was released in 1986 and is better then some of his earlier works. We still get descriptions of some of the more mundane parts of life, like he had orange marmalade on his toast, but it is not as bad as his earlier writings.

Gunsmoke

I have often wondered how some of this early boring stuff ever got published and sold and then I start thinking. When I was a kid, all TV shows were an hour long. Gunsmoke was one of our favorite shows. If I try to watch it today it seems so long and so boring, so I guess people and tastes change.

DOS EQUIS, Heineken, CORONA
At least Koontz knows his beer, this is the third book in a row by him in which he has mentioned Dos Equis. This time Heineken and Corona also get plugs. If I wrote a book it would have to include Bohemia, Tsing Tao and Product 19.

40 of 44 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Steven
  • Bakersfield, CA, USA
  • 09-22-08

I liked the Whole book

Read all of your reviews and decided to get the book anyway I liked it. It was A little slow to get started but wow once it did I was glad that I didnt pay much attion to the ones that said that it wasent worth the read... I enjoyed the whole book :)

13 of 14 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Candace
  • Tracy, CA, United States
  • 10-30-08

Where's the Dog?

I am Dean Koontz number one fan, so of course I was thrilled that this was added to Audible. Somehow I missed reading it... It was typical Koontz with several characters being built then they come together as a team with some falling in love. Although he seems to always use the same formula, each are so unique and original that I CANNOT GET ENOUGH. I wish he would write faster... I almost didn't download this because of the comments about the narrator - because a bad narrator can be real irritating and I have dropped some audiobooks midstream because listening to the narrator was so difficult. NOT SO IN THIS CASE. I thought he was just fine. Maybe not the best, but certainly not bad enough to quit or not enjoy the story.

If you are an avid Dean Koontz fan you will enjoy this book. You may also be wondering, like me, where was the dog?

30 of 34 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

You gotta get this book

I'm a huge Koontz fan, trying to read his books as soon as they hit the streets. I have thought "In the Corner of his Eye" was my all time favorite but "Strangers" comes a close second. The characterizations are awesome, you really get to know each and every one of the people whose story he is telling. They are living breathing folks that you come to care deeply about and to cheer on when things go so amiss for them. I miss these guys now that I've finished the book and wonder often how their lives would progree.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

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Why was this in "mystery" category?

The only mystery was "why did I buy it?" I'd had a couple of other Koontz books that I liked well enough, but this one seems to be just an unending collection of every sort of teenage mutant zombie alien psycho nonsense that has ever been published. At least I'm guessing it's unending, since I wasn't able to finish it. There were a couple of characters whose fate I'd have liked to know, but just couldn't stick it out.

Sometimes I like to consider what could be done with a book by eliminating or altering characters or storylines or changing the narrator to make the book readable, but this one just wouldn't be worth the work. I wish Audible would screen it's categories better, so I wouldn't have to do so much research before purchasing.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Top 5 for Dean Koontz

Strangers is one of the better Dean Koontz books I've read. It is long but the cast of characters is interesting and their mysterious but similiar circumstances keep you interested in their toils long through the book. The book has an air of supernatural to it without being ridiculous except for parts of the end but the book doesn't rap up in 5 minutes and the wait is well worth it. Koontz develops the characters in such a way as to keep you interested and you feel their plight and their humanity. Kudos

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Craig Beck
  • 06-17-13

Cheesy amateur dramatics style narrator spoils it

I think I might be getting too picky in my old age but the cheesy, old fashioned, amateur dramatics style narrator made the whole book impossible to listen to. It was over performed to the point where all I could hear was the annoying voiceover trying to show off with his dramatic range.

Very disapointed

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Kim
  • 01-24-09

Gripping

Really enjoyed the story and it was well read. Realising what is going on before the author tells you works well because you keep listening waiting for when they all find out. Like this author in audible format works really well

10 of 12 people found this review helpful

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  • Kevin Grover
  • 01-09-15

Awful Narrator

If this book wasn’t for you, who do you think might enjoy it more?

Die hard Dean Kontz fans

What was most disappointing about Dean Koontz’s story?

Too many characters and no focus on plot development. It was lost, directionless and didn't seem to want to get started

Would you be willing to try another one of Dick Hill’s performances?

No - the narrator was awful. Just awful. It was like listening to Fat Tony from the Simpsons reading a novel.

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Strangers?

Halved the characters. We don't need to know every tiny bit of history about a character as soon as they walk into a room. We don't need the writer to describe physical traits in such depth - you tell us she's a bit of a goth with a geeky side, we get what you mean. You don't need to say she had black hair with glasses, wore black clothes that matched her black nails that she had roughly bit... ugh!

Any additional comments?

Not bothering with any more Koontz

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 12-01-13

Good book

What made the experience of listening to Strangers the most enjoyable?

I enjoyed the book Strangers. The reading of the story was ok, although some of the voices, I thought did not match my ideas of the characters, eg Ginger sounded quite timid were to get to the position she was she would have to be a stronger character.

Who was your favorite character and why?

I enjoyed the character of Jack Twist, his fall from good to not so good but the rationale behind it.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I did not emotionally connect with this book.

Any additional comments?

I have read some other Dean Koontz books. His books pass the time, they can have good ideas but the ending tend to not live up to the story preceding. This story shows the difference in time from when it was written to the present day it is read. The story has a lot of cliches (although novel at the time it was written) that help the reader (or listener) to guess the twist in the ending, well before we get there.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • T. Norman
  • 02-20-10

Dreadful!!

I'm sorry, but this is the worst book i've had from audible... It's not the quality of the writing that's the issue, I've bought and loved many Dean Koontz books over the years; it just comes down to the poor quality of the narration.
it's dis-jointed, with pauses mid sentence (this is really off putting!) and as the narrator attempts to play an individual accent for each character I found myself being turned off by the irritating nasal tone he adopts.
I will never get another book with this narrator!!

10 of 13 people found this review helpful

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  • Ms. J. Stewart
  • 05-27-15

fantastic!

hooked all the way through in the fashion of Stephen kings under the dome. Definitely going to check out some other Koontz books now

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Adaline
  • 04-07-15

Fantastic tale

I am a Dean Koontz fan but it took me a while to get into the book. It was worth the endurance. Once it gets going, the story is great and the characters and believable and well developed.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Amanda
  • 04-01-15

Lovely story!

Can remember reading this book years ago and enjoyed it just as well now, even better having it read to me on long commuter driving!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 02-17-15

Play at 1.5

Love the book, but the narrator speaks very slowly so I'd advise you play at 1.5 speed if you don't want to get annoyed. Also, sometimes when as he talks in different voices for different characters, I couldn't make out what he said.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Colin
  • 07-19-10

Strangers

Good listen

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 08-28-17

irresistible

A great read, read beautifully, of a quite amazing tale. I highly recommend Strangers toall lovers of science and fiction.

  • Overall
  • Nyree
  • 04-17-17

riveting

I listened to this book in the car and anywhere I could. loved it ❤

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 03-16-17

Enthralling and engaging listen

What made the experience of listening to Strangers the most enjoyable?

I had read this book in my 20's and had searched for it till now, many years later as I couldn't remember the author, nor the title of the book. Excited that I found it as an audible book that I downloaded because it sounded interesting. It was so good that I'm now sad that I have finished listening to it. A totally recommended listen and I will listen to it again .. and again!

What was one of the most memorable moments of Strangers?

The ending, both wonderous and surprising.

Have you listened to any of Dick Hill’s other performances? How does this one compare?

This was a first time listen of Dick Hill's work, it was fantastic.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The ending and how the strangers wove into the story line.

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  • Michael beltrametti
  • 02-23-17

great bit of fiction bla bla bla bla bla bla bla b

great characters involving plot. he takes good time to create an atmosphere that involves you from the start. as all koontzs it has a breathtaking conclusion.