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Sunday, 27 January 2013

The Good Guy, by Dean Koontz, Reviewed.

Wow! This book held my attention from the first page and wouldn’t let go until I’d finished. Only the necessities of daily life intruded to make me read it in instalments.

Exciting, moving, sensitive, sometimes violent, thought-provoking and carrying a love story that explains the amazing action of the main protagonists, this is a thriller with heart. I generally don’t much like thrillers; they often lack character development and rely too much on action. This is an exception. Mind you, having read previous books by Koontz, I was unsurprised at the depth of character in all the players in this tale of murder, conspiracy and action. The political manipulation, the suggestion of some controlling force beyond the obvious, the arrogance of the chief antagonist and the quiet confidence and credible fear of the two major protagonists gifts the story with more depth than is usual in the genre.

I’m not going to attempt to synopsise the plot; it would be a pointless exercise and would provide a less than adequate explanation of the story. Suffice it to say that we are in contemporary USA, with all the bluster, hype, overblown confidence and mad over-consumption familiar to those of us in the West but not of the States.

Of course, there’s action that borders on the incredible; this is a thriller. But Koontz has a way of persuading the reader to extend his suspension of disbelief just enough to go with the tale. Because the book is so well written, the language so apposite yet poetic, the characters so beautifully drawn, the reader is willing to accept certain aspects of the story that would become a hindrance in the hands of an inferior writer.

As the tale comes to its climax and the denouement builds, the tension is so palpable that the reader speeds through the pages, hoping for an ending that will satisfy all aspects of the story without leaving a taste of either sourness or disappointment. That the final pages tie up the necessary loose ends and manage to leave the reader satisfied, is testament to the craftsmanship and skill of this excellent storyteller.

If you like your action books with emotional punch, suitable humour, larger than life but credible heroes and heroines, and respect for the reader’s intellect, you’ll enjoy this book. Thoroughly recommended.

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