Dean Koontz sure knows how to spin a tale! With his book “Odd Thomas,” Koontz flexes his mystery, suspense, and destiny skills to the maximum. Finishing the book will undoubtedly leave you starving for a similar read. Lucky for us all, Koontz isn’t the only author who is great a weaving such a narrative together.
Gone South by Robert R. McCammon
From the Publisher: Two decades after he finished serving his country in the jungles of Southeast Asia, Dan Lambert still pays the price. As he hustles for construction work in the heat of a brutal Louisiana summer, Dan tries to ignore the pounding in his head—a constant reminder of the Agent Orange–caused leukemia which will soon end his life. And now the bank wants to repossess his truck. His attempt to reason with the loan officer does not get him far. Dan loses himself in rage, and for a moment is back in the jungle again. When he comes out of his bloodlust, he has shot the banker through the chest. There is nothing to do but run.
On his trail are two peculiar bounty hunters: a onetime Siamese twin and a heavyset Elvis impersonator. To save his own life, Dan is going to have to remember why it was worth living in the first place.
Reality and fantasy clash in a beautifully believable landscape in “Gone South.” With a sympathetic character that brings back memories of Koontz’s works, it’ll be easy to get behind Dan as his story unfolds. You’ll feel at home with the suspenseful way McCammon explores his characters and their world.
Brain Child by John Saul
From the Publisher: Alex Lonsdale was one of the most popular kids in La Paloma, California. Until the horrifying car accident. Until a brilliant doctor’s medical miracle brought him back from the brink of death. Now, Alex seems the same. but in his eyes there is a blankness. In his hear there is coldness.
If his parents, his friends, his girlfriend could see inside his brain, inside his dreams, they would be terrified. One hundred years ago in La Paloma, a terrible deed was done. A cry for vengeance pierced the night.
That evil still lives. That vengeance still waits. Waits for Alex Lonsdale. Waits for the…Brainchild.
John Saul takes the suspenseful elements of Koontz’s work and injects an ample amount of horror into it! Not holding back in this dark narrative, you’ll meet characters who will push your moral buttons. You’ll feel uneasy at times, and you’ll love and hate Saul for it.
Keeper vs. Reaper by Jennifer Malone Wright
From the Publisher: When her father died, Lucy Mae Estmond inherited the family business. She has known all of her life that she would be in line to watch over the souls of the recently passed, keeping them safe from the Reapers.
The soul eating Reapers have been a plague upon the Earth, stealing souls and leaving the Keepers as the only thing that stands between Heaven and Hell. The factions despise each other and have warred for generations.
Then Lucy discovers an ancient legend predicting the arrival of the Chosen One, destined to bring forth an end to the Reapers. The surprises continue when she realizes she is that person. For Lucy, being the Chosen One doesn’t change much. Fighting Reapers is just another day in the life of a Keeper. When she meets Jack Walker, they both realize they have an insane, mutual attraction. Too bad that he’s been sent to prevent the prophecy from coming true. His only mission: to kill the Chosen One.
This is a fast-paced paranormal read and I highly recommend it to fans of Odd Thomas. The characters and the storyline are unique and memorable. This is a fun read!
The Talisman by Stephen King and Peter Straub
From the Publisher: Why had twelve-year-old Jack Sawyer’s mother frantically moved the two of them from Rodeo Drive to a New York City apartment to the Alhambra, a fading ocean resort and shuttered amusement park in New Hampshire?
Who or what is she running from? She is dying . . . and even young Jack knows she can’t outrun death.
But only he can save her—for he has been chosen to search for a prize across an epic landscape of dangers and lies, a realm of innocents and monsters, where everything Jack loves is on the line.
In “The Talisman,” King, with the help of Straub, gives us traditional horror that only he can produce, but blends it with the surreal in a way that makes reality into a fantasy in its own right. An excellent read and I envy anyone who is picking it up for the first time!
The Wine of Angels by Phil Rickman
From the Publisher: “The first in the historically rich, atmospheric mystery series featuring female exorcist Reverend Merrily Watkins
The new vicar had never wanted a picture-postcard parish—or a huge and haunted vicarage. Nor had she wanted to walk into a dispute over a controversial play about a 17th-century clergyman accused of witchcraft, a story that certain long-established families would rather remained obscure. But this is Ledwardine, steeped in cider and secrets. A paradise of cobbled streets and timber-framed houses. And also—as Merrily Watkins and her teenage daughter, Jane, discover—a village where horrific murder is a tradition that spans centuries.”
Flashing a gritty light on the past and blending suspense, horror, and fantasy, you’re going to be in for quite the ride when opening “The Wine of Angel.” Mentioned as a terrifying narrative, you’ll want to decide if staying up late to read another chapter is worth it when you’re jumping at the shadows in your bedroom.
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