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Publisher's Summary

At 34, Internet entrepreneur Ryan Perry seemed to have the world in his pocket - until the first troubling symptoms appeared out of nowhere. Within days, he's diagnosed with incurable cardiomyopathy and finds himself on the waiting list for a heart transplant. It's his only hope, and it's dwindling fast. Ryan is about to lose it all...his health, his girlfriend Samantha, and his life.

One year later, Ryan has never felt better. Business is good and he hopes to renew his relationship with Samantha. Then the unmarked gifts begin to appear: a box of Valentine candy hearts, a heart pendant. Most disturbing of all, a graphic heart surgery video and the chilling message: Your heart belongs to me.

In a heartbeat, the medical miracle that gave Ryan a second chance at life is about to become a curse worse than death. For Ryan is being stalked by a mysterious woman who feels entitled to everything he has. She's the spitting image of the 26-year-old donor of the heart beating steadily in Ryan's own chest. And she's come to take it back.

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

Critic Reviews

"Koontz is a master of the edge-of-your-seat, paranoid thriller - and perhaps the leading American practitioner of the form." (Newark Star-Ledger)
"Koontz is a superb plotter and wordsmith. He chronicles the hopes and fears of our time in broad strokes and fine detail, using popular fiction to explore the human condition." (USA Today)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings


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  • Overall

Dangerous Waters

I can't imagine a Mystery/Suspense reader being disappointed in this book. The action grabs you fast, right up front and pins you until the end. It's exceptionally well written; Koontz has the talent to emotionally hook the reader, then, like the undertow in the ocean, you discover how dangerous the waters really are. To put it more plainly, the human condition is revealed in much of its nakedness and readers are left affected and possibly somewhat disturbed. I will read it again, and soon.

37 of 40 people found this review helpful

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Very predictable and boring. Its been 6 years and I still remember giving up on this one.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Keep your heart - I don't want it.

Dean Koontz is normally one of my favorite authors. Half way through the book I was hoping the protagonist would die so the book would move on to someone more interesting. I could not wait for this book to be over. If you do ignore the negative reviews (like I did), check to see if your player has a fast play speed to minimize the pain.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Two thumbs down

The only positive thing I can say is the narration is good.

Instead of a mystery or thriller, it turns out to be a book of spiritual enlightenment.

If you are looking for a good suspenseful book, look elsewhere

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Elaine
  • Hooksett, NH, USA
  • 12-02-08


A rich dot commer becomes ill and after visiting his doctor who tells him the possible causes of his enlarged heart could be poisoning among other things, Ryan quickly becomes suspicious of people, preferring to eat out of vacuum-sealed containers as a little-to-late precaution. His suspicions include watching other drivers on the road - don't know what he expects in this latter suspicion.

This story has been more than enough in substance to hold my interest and that of my husband on a long road trip. Still have over 3 hours left out of about 8.5 hours of narration.

This story's theme had a lot of potential but things just didn't fit. I didn't find the ending to be neatly-wrapped. Even the psychological threats the protagonist received weren't frightening - just weird and we're expected to believe that the way they happened were plausible.

What could have worked - just fizzled.

8 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Candace
  • Tracy, CA, United States
  • 02-11-09

Very disappointed

I must say, as an avid Dean Koontz fan, I was confused while I was listening to this and mistook the book to be by some other author unknown to me. The early banter between Ryan and his girl and the dogs at the end were the only part that was anything Koontz-like.

And what is all the garbage about "Sub-text"? Who cares? Proabably only a writer, but books should be written for "READERS". I don't need or want a writing lesson. Very strange.

The story made absolutely no sense and missing his usual charactor growth. I had absolutely no affinity to them, or even cared about them one way or another.

It hints that the main charactor, Ryan, had a poor childhood but didn't delve into it at all. It ended quickly without much of the suspense that I am used to from Mr. Koontz.

The real villian of the story, the Surgeon, was not addressed. Did he continue to opperate without any issues? This was not an abridged book, but it sure seemed like it. Typical Koontz would have went after the Surgeon, that would have made it more interesting.

Maybe this was one of his first novels?

Don't waste your time on this one if you are a fan. You will not get what you expect and probably be as disappointed as I was.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Elena
  • Dallas, TX
  • 12-03-08

Not what I was hoping for

This was disappointing. I read many of Koontz novels and this one was lacking. the main character was not like I expect Koontz character to be. He was way too neurotic and unsure of himself. And there really wasn't a villain either. The whole resolution was pretty lame.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Worth the time only because it's short!

I seldom give any Dean Koontz book a less-than-4-star review but this will be an exception. Medically, this book is like a tired Robin Cook novel. If it hadn't been for a sprinkling of the supernatural, the entertainment value would have been negligible. I was so far ahead of the story line that even the last-minute twists didn't turn this into a thriller for me.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Uncharacteristiclly boring for a Dean Koontz book

We are big Dean Koontz fans. This book was not the typical awesome Dean Koontz thriller. It was too slow and took forever to get interesting. I never fall asleep listening to books on tape and I fell asleep twice during this one. Unfortunately, we cannot recommend this book.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Lake Forest, CA, United States
  • 05-06-09

Fun, But Not His Best

Dean Koontz is usually a lot of fun and this is no exception. I don't think this is his best, but it's certainly not the worst. Maybe if he included a smart, adorable, loveable Golden Retriever I'd be more enthusiastic. He's spoiled me rotten: I've come to be very fond of his dog people.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Overall
  • Joseph
  • 04-24-09


I am a big fan of Dean Koontz and have been reading his books for over fifteen years. After joining Audible I became a Koontz listener and have been very pleased with the materials downloaded up to now.

The plot of this book seemed intriguing but proved not to be so. It takes a long time to get going. There is only a slight air of mystery created (in the middle of the book) and no fear and suspense at all. At one point I almost gave up listening but persevered and listened to it through to the end.

If you like your Koontz bloody or mysterious this book is not for you and you must seek elsewhere.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • swartz
  • 12-07-17

not the best Dean Koontz

intriguing story but slow, not your usual can't leave it Dean Koontz story telling.
Nice narration and characterisation tho.