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Book Review: Frankenstein: Dead and Alive

dead_and_aliveDon’t bother with this book.  In fact, don’t bother reading the rest of this review unless you want to know why you shouldn’t bother with this book.

Still here?  Ok, I warned you.

This book is very poorly written.  You might ask, “Why in the heck did you bother to read it then?”

Well, it’s like this.  See, this is the third book in a series.  Several years ago, my wife bought me the first of these books for an upcoming trip I was taking.  She didn’t notice that it was one of those cheesy written by {AUTHOR DU JOUR} with {LAME Co-Writer}.  I make it habit to avoid these titles.  I’ve never had a good experience, and always feel gyped buying them.  After all, I am paying full price for an author whose writing I like.  If he’s not actually writing the damn thing, then why should I pay a premium.  Examples of (IMHO) lame authors who resort to this crap are:  Tom Clancy, Clive Cussler, James Patterson, and now Dean Koontz.  Anyway, I digress.

So, there I was, on the plane, and I had this book. So, against my better judgement I read book 1 in the series: Prodigal Son.  It was ok, but borrowed heavily from another novel by the author. It definitely wasn’t great.

A year or two later, the second book in the series came out, and because lovely, beautiful, charming wife had also read the first in the series, we got City of Night, this one co-written by another no-namer Ed Gorman.  IMHO the second in the series was better than the first and hugely better than the most recent one.

We had a long wait for a really lame book.  But, it finally showed up in paperback form and we were this far in.  Plus, it looks like he screwed this one up all by himself.  Koontz is listed as the sole author.

Alright, so why is this book stinky?  Here are some reasons:

1. The writing is poor.

2. There is not just one weird thing to suspend disbelief about, but there are dozens.  Typically when you read a good Dean Koontz, he builds his story around a central theme and universe.  This universe holds together logically, obeys its own rules, and is consistent.

3. The story reads as though the author got bored with it, and really struggled to “get it over with”.

4. The ending is abrupt and nonsensical.

5. There are lots of stupid inconsistencies that can’t be explained other than they suited the author’s fancy.

6. The author continually introduces new phenomena and abrupt shifts in direction that leave the reader in a state of total disbelief.

Don’t waste your time on this book. I wish I hadn’t.  If you want to read a REALLY good book by this author try From the Corner of His Eye“.  It hardly seems possible that it was written by the same guy.


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