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Odd Hours (2008)
by Dean Koontz
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0553807056, Hardcover)Amazon Exclusive Essay: Destiny and Odd Hours Odd Thomas came to me as a gift, the entire first chapter of his first book having poured out of me as I was in the middle of writing The Face. I wrote it by hand, though I never work that way, and I never hesitated to think what should come next. He was fully-realized in my mind from the moment I began to write in that lined legal tablet. With other stories and characters, I can identify the source of the inspiration, but not with Oddie and his books. He just suddenly was. When I write about him, his narrative voice is so clear to me that I almost hear him in my head. For those among you who long have thought that I should be institutionalized, just relax: I said I almost hear him. Many times over the years, I said I would never write an open-ended series. Then along came Oddie, and he proved me wrong. Or so I thought. As I wrote the first chapter of Odd Hours, the fourth featuring my fry-cook hero, I realized that this was not an open-ended series, after all, but that it would conclude with six or seven novels. I now think seven. I suddenly saw the end point of his journey, the arc of it to the final book, and I was stunned. Beginning with this fourth story, the stakes were being raised dramatically; Oddie was going to face far more physical and moral danger than previously; and he was going to mature toward the fulfillment of a destiny that I had not seen coming until that moment. Initially, I tried to argue myself out of the direction that Odd Hours was taking. I didn't believe that the first three books had put down a sufficient foundation to support the formidable architecture that I saw rising from it in the next three or four novels. When I began to reread the first three books, however, I quickly discovered that I had unconsciously paved the road that the series was now taking. I had thought I was writing a series with an overall theme about the power and beauty of humility. Indeed I was, but it was also something more than that; and Oddie's ultimate destiny will not be merely purification to a state of absolute humility, but will be that and something else I find quite wonderful. What lies ahead will be a challenge to write--or perhaps not. The character of Odd Thomas was a gift to me, and now I see that the entire architecture of a seven-book series was another gift that came to me complete on the same day Oddie arrived, although I needed time to recognize it. This world is a place of wonder, and life is a mysterious enterprise; but nothing in all my years has been more mysterious than Odd Thomas's origins and my compulsion to write about him. -- Dean Koontz
(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:19:22 -0400)
Haunted by dreams of a powerful red tide, Odd Thomas, accompanied by two otherworldly sidekicks--his dog Boo and the Chairman of the Board--is drawn to a small California coastal town, where nothing is at it appears and where he confronts overwhelming and sinister forces out to stop his quest.
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