Movies for guys to watch … for free

ODD-THOMAS_movie-art“Free” as in via Netflix streaming…

“Odd Thomas:” Typically, when I stream movies or TV shows, I’m pretty particular in the ones I pick. This was not one of those picks, and I was pleasantly surprised. I clicked on this one simply because I like the lead actor, Anton Yelchin (“Star Trek”), who plays the title character. Adapted from a Dean Koontz novel of the same name, “Odd Thomas” is a paranormal investigator who can see ghosts. Though somewhat predictable and at times plodding, it’s good sci-fi fare that benefits from Willem Defoe (“Spider-Man,” “Boondock Saints”) in a supporting role and some pretty solid CGI for a low-budget flick. It has heart, humor and decent action, and a touching ending that I didn’t really expect.

Read the full article @ The Dickinson Press.

BookReporter review of Saint Odd

Saint Odd 3DIn 2003, Dean Koontz published ODD THOMAS, which followed a 20-year-old fry cook from Pico Mundo, California, through the loss of his true love, Stormy Llewellyn, in a brutal mass murder. In the years since, Koontz has published six more Odd Thomas novels, concluding the series now with SAINT ODD.

In the two years since Stormy was killed at the Green Moon Mall, Odd has been traveling the country, drawn to various dark scenes and enigmatic figures. Throughout the series, he thwarts several major crimes or disasters using his psychic ability to see and communicate with the dead, though the body count is always still high. The bad guys are often nefarious cultists, and those assisting Odd are frequently mysterious or possibly magical. In SAINT ODD, the series ends with Odd finally returning to Pico Mundo and facing an evil greater than even the one that took Stormy from him.

Read the full review @ BookReporter.com

So Long Odd Thomas: Saint Odd

Saint Odd 3DAs much as anyone hates to see a story come to an end, nothing lasts forever. We’ve all seen television, book, and movie series that somehow survived long past their expiration date, in the process becoming parodies of what once attracted us to them to begin with. It’s like Jud Crandal said in Stephen King’s Pet Semetary: “Sometimes, dead is better.”

Perhaps more common are those series that are struck down in their prime: Firefly is my favorite example, but there are so many others – Dead Like Me, Freaks and Geeks,Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles – each with its own tragicomic backstory of studio meddling, executive cluelessness, and ignominious death on the frontlines of popular entertainment.

Sometimes, though, the audience gets lucky and a story ends just where it should. Loose ends are tied up or left with just enough slack to leave us with something to think about. Story arcs are resolved. Heroes and villains arrive at their destiny. We stand and give a round of applause, maybe wipe a tear away, and put the book or blu-ray or ticket stub away on the high shelf of our imagination.

Read the full review @ Suvudu

Book Review: ‘The Face of Fear,’ A Thriller by Dean Koontz

BlogCritics logoThe title of this book tells you well what to expect of it: fear, suspense, red-hot emotions and unexpected twists and turns of the plot. Add to this the fact that the novel was written by Dean Koontz, a famous master of thrillers, and you won’t be disappointed from the very first page.

The story starts with a TV interview with Graham, the former mountain climber, who acquired supernatural mental capacity after an almost fatal fall off the slope of Everest. This psychic ability of the protagonist is the only deviation from a crime-detective story, in which nothing but the puzzle of reality exists. However, this assumption of Graham’s clairvoyant trait should not be categorized as a complete fantasy, as there are a few documented cases when psychics helped to solve crime mysteries. In any case, the story, told with convincing clarity of details is as believable as it could be in this genre.

Read the full review @ Blogcritics.

Kątem oka

Here’s a Polish edition cover for you. The title translates to “peripheral vision.” Leave a comment if you want to guess which book this is a translation of. (Source review.)

Kątem oka

A review of Apokalipsa Odda

Apokalipsa OddaŻycie nie jest łatwe, jeśli w pracy jest się kucharzem, a w nocy nawiedzają człowieka duchy, które mają na ziemi niezałatwione sprawy i szukają jedynego człowieka, który jest im w stanie pomóc. W sumie po pewnym czasie staje się to pewnego rodzaju standardem. Trudność polega na początku na komunikacji, jak zrozumieć kogoś kto już nic nie może powiedzieć. Przyzwyczaić należy się również do tego, że jeden z dwóch posiadanych psów również jest duchem…

Dean Koontz to znany pisarz amerykański, specjalizujący się w thrillerach oraz horrorach. W jego dorobku jest kilkadziesiąt pozycji, z których większość ukazało się w języku polskim. Obecnie ukazuje się kolejna książka, wchodząca w skład cyklu o dość nietypowym kucharzu Oddzie Thomasie.

Read the full review @ inertia360. (Or an English version via Google Translate.)

31 Days of Halloween: ‘Odd Thomas,’ ‘The Raven’ and ‘Jacob’s Ladder’

Herald MediaIf you’re searching for a movie that provides just enough entertainment and tension then this is your movie. There are emotional impacts that will hit you harder than you’ll likely expect, but again…not like in the book. Perfect for teens or adults looking for lighter fare, “Odd Thomas” is without a doubt a sleeper worth watching.

Oh, and do yourself a favor; read the books. Even the worst of them are great.

Read the full article @ HeraldExtra.com.

Koontz’s “Odd Thomas” does not disappoint

The newspaper for Shippensburg University reviews the original Odd Thomas novel.

The Slate Online logo

If you are an avid reader like me, you make sure there is enough spare time in the day to get lost in the eerie, futuristic worlds of Stephen King or fall in love with Nicholas Sparks’ latest absurdly charming male lead. Although I have read what seems like a million books, none have yet to compare to “Odd Thomas,” the greatest piece of literature every written (in my opinion at least).

“Odd Thomas”, written by Shippensburg University alumn, Dean Koontz, could be classified as a mystery, thriller, dark comedy or romance novel. The story takes place in Pico Mundo, California, a small town located in the Mojave Desert.

We are introduced to the protagonist, Odd Thomas, within the first chapter. We quickly learn that Thomas has a special gift (or some say curse) of seeing the dead, which plays a large role throughout the novel. Thomas warns the reader from the very beginning that he “leads an unusual life”, and evidence of this statement can be found throughout the entire story.
Main characters include Stormy Llewellyn, Thomas’s high school sweet heart whom he is destined to be with forever; Chief Wyatt Porter, the head honcho of the Pico Mundo Police Department and also Thomas’s surrogate father; Little Ozzie, a famous four hundred pound, six fingered writer who is one of Thomas’s closest friends. Finally Fungus Man, a sadistic creep of a guy who is the assumed antagonist of the story.

Read the full review @ The Slate Online.

The New American reviews The City

The City (Cover 2)Dean Koontz’s characters are often a strange lot, and Jonah Kirk is no exception. In the hands of a lesser author, the story of a young black man with a gift for music growing up during the 1960s in Koontz’s unnamed city would probably become a painful dull preachment on the social ills of that era. When the reader discovers that another major character had been among the Japanese-Americans who spent the years of the Second World War in the Manzanar internment camp in California, the possibility for such preachment would often be redoubled. Not so with The City. Koontz does not offer characters who define themselves as “victims,” or who wallow in morbid self-pity. Far from making such characters objects of pity, Koontz leads the reader to see the strength which comes from adversity. As one character declares in the course of the novel, “Too many experts make art political, ’cause they believe great artists always held the same convictions as they themselves do. But the last thing art should be is political. Yuck. Double yuck. Keep your mind free. Trust your eye and heart.”

Read the full review @ The New American.

New Zelander review of Innocence

Innocence UK TPBKOn the surface, it looks like girl meets boy, boy saves girl, but Innocence is much more than that.

Parts of it feel a little bit saggy, and the description of the snow, and the cold is a bit overdone, but Innocence still cracks along at a reasonable pace. The evildoers are unambiguously evil, and Addison and Gywneth are unambiguously good, and sometimes it’s refreshing to read a simple good vs evil morality tale.

Read the full review @ The Southland Times.