False Memory

by Dean R. Koontz | Mystery & Thrillers |
ISBN: 037540970x Global Overview for this book
Registered by erinacea of Friedrichshain, Berlin Germany on 8/3/2008
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This book is in the wild! This Book is Currently in the Wild!
1 journaler for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by erinacea from Friedrichshain, Berlin Germany on Sunday, August 03, 2008
Sent to me by ink-heart, who warned me about the disastrous state of the book and thus refused to register it.

Personally I don't think it's in that bad a state. Yes, it's badly bent and looks particularly out of shape for such a fat book, but though it couldn't garner any money and would likely be thrown out of any thrift shop I might offer it to, it is perfectly well readable, which is why I register it anyway. :p

So, the story. Huh. As usually the blurb is completely useless, so I'll have to try to come up with a summary of my own. *ponders* It's not even a week since I read it, so it shouldn't be this hard... *takes a deep breath*

Okay, basically it's about this couple, Dusty and Martie, of whom the wife is suddenly struck with really bad anxiety attacks (autophobia, it turns out), coincidentally while her best friend is struggling against agoraphobia and Dusty's half-brother has to be hospitalized after a suicide attempt. While their psychotherapist theorizes on Martie's sudden phobia being a result of the stress in trying to deal with her friend's illness, Dusty makes some frightful discoveries... Could it be that they're only the pawns in a terrifying game?

There, how's that? I guess it shows this is my first review in more than half a year... still, not too bad, considering. And yikes, am I chatty!

WARNING! All of the below may contain heavy spoilers about the plot and outcome of the book. I'll whiten the really spoily parts, and you can make them visible by highlighting them via mouse or cursor. You have been warned!

I like Koontz. He's one of my favourite authors even though this book is only the fifth or so I've read. I like this one's writing style as well, though not as much as with the others. I guess I found it too wordy for my taste, too repetitive in some descriptions and dialogues (and their accompanying flashbacks). The characters are okay, I guess, quirky and such, but at the same time they didn't get a lot of depth. Martie is little more than a shallow copy of Laura in Lightning (which is the older book, by far) and Dusty is the image of the trusty, dependable husband. And they have a dog - of course they have a dog! I don't know why that irks me so much when he doesn't even play any role (oh wait, maybe that's why). I rather liked crazy lovable Skeet, that nurse (Jasmine?), and possibly Dr. Closterman (also with a dog, but a more lively one), I also liked Martie's mother even though we never got to meet her - the others weren't particularly interesting.

And the plot, gah, what utter rubbish! Spoiler I'm not actually talking about the brainwashing, that falls under "suspension of disbelief" and, who knows, might actually be possible. But what kind of evil mastermind leaves so many clues for his victims to find?
The story is set into motion, confusing at first and exciting, sure, and quickly gathers speed. But from Skeet and Martie's behaviour it's easy enough to work out what is going on, so I was sorta disappointed when after all the time Dusty spent wondering about the issue my theory actually turned out to be true. After that the story turns into an us-against-the-world kind of pursuit full of action and guns, which turns out to be astoundingly, mind-bendingly boring. Even the twist I expected in the end didn't happen. Spoiler (Boo, the hero doesn't kill the villainized victim, someone else does! Boo, the sidekick hero doesn't kill the villain, someone else does! How surprising...)
Instead, you only get to meet more unlikable (and unlikely) characters. *sighs*

Even though it may sound that way, I don't actually regret reading this book. I mean it was certainly interesting but when it comes to Koontz, it was a bit of a let-down. But then I haven't yet got to rant about the ending...

The ending was totally stupid. I don't know what kind of marketing scheme that is, but it certainly revolves around... (Spoiler)
"Nice, likeable person/couple gets into trouble. Fast-paced action. One nice person and some unknown characters die. Glue everything together in a saccharine happy ending."

All I can ask is why? Spoiler I mean it's okay that the evil is destroyed forevermore (this is not horror after all, where a continuation looms just around the corner), also that the protagonists get to live happily ever after (they sort of deserve that after all their trouble). My complaint goes more along the lines of...
Why does such a capable author feel the need to wrap up the story with an ending like that? Spoiler An ending where the villain turns out to be related to the hero in some sinister backstory (and yes, sadly I expected that kind of "twist" after the utter hogwash in Life Expectancy even though I love that book) and where all protagonists have to find their Significant Other and have adorable kids?

Fun fact:
Every time I read the name Ahriman I had to think of the dark and handsome wizard Arriman in Which witch? (Spoiler) who (although a comparatively shallow character in a simple children's story) was far more interesting than the similarly named psychopath in this one.

I don't know yet what I'll be doing with this book. I'd like to pass it on somehow, though I'm half-afraid no one will want it after my scathing review. :p
(Hey, I still gave it 5 points. It's a fast-paced intriguing story that takes some getting used-to; it's just not anything big or original or deep.)

Released 12 yrs ago (10/31/2008 UTC) at Max-Planck-Institut (MPI) für molekulare Genetik in Dahlem, Berlin Germany



On a bench on the ground floor, near the exit supervised by the security cam - I hope I'm not on there now... :p

To the finder:

You've found a wandering book! Please leave a short (or not so short ;) ) journal entry, so I know that the book's well and safe in your hands. For example, you could write where you found it, how you like it, or what you are planning to do with it.

Thanks a lot!

PS: While I enjoy writing these texts in English, there's no obligation for you to do the same. If you like, you could make an entry in German, or whatever your mothertongue may be.
(Einträge auf deutsch sind auch erlaubt. ;) )
Have fun reading!

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