[Download] ➻ Phantoms ✤ Dean Koontz – Manifest-money.info
CLOSER They Found The Town Silent, Apparently Abandoned Then They Found The First Body Strangely Swollen And Still Warm One Hundred Fifty Were Dead, Missing But The Terror Had Only Begun In The Tiny Mountain Town Of Snowfield, CaliforniaD CLOSER At First They Thought It Was The Work Of A Maniac Or Terrorists Or Toxic Contamination Or A Bizarre New DiseaseD CLOSER But Then They Found The Truth And They Saw It In The Flesh And It Was Worse Than Anything Any Of Them Had Ever Imagined This is one of my all time favourite books I remember being twelve and my mother telling me under no circumstances was I to read any of her Dean Koontz books, because they were not suitable for a girl my age So of course, the minute I had the chance, I grabbed a bunch of his books and got to reading Phantoms is the only one that really resonated with me Over the years, whenever I m bored and at a loss as to what to read, I find myself drawn back to this book My copy is positively ancient looking it s falling apart, the back cover is missing, and one or two pages are taped together It s been with me everywhere on school camp, on overseas trips it s almost become a security blanket for me.Personally, I think it s a great story It s got everything there s romance, there are awesome background characters and pretty great main characters too And there s a genuinely scary evil thing that still gives me the heebie jeebies when I think about it The whole of idea of view spoiler an evil so ancient that it s essentially THE DEVIL deciding to just destroy a small town for no other reason than because it can hide spoiler 4.5 out of 5First things first, let s break out the checklist to see how Koontzian this book is.1 Blond lead love interest Nope2 Dog s Yup but these Fidos aren t smart 3 Government conspiracy Nope4 Aliens Nope5 Serial Killer Nope but there are a few psychopath so I ll let you decide if they count 6 Bougainvillea plant Nope7 Sodium vapor streetlight Yup numerous times In fact, this might have the most mentions of sodium vapor out of every Koontz book ever 8 Precocious child Nope9 Town gone crazy Nope but kinda Again, not sure if it fits 10 Psychic s NopeSo two Unless you wanna get nitpicky, then four Live or die, make your choice Or whatever On with the review Books like PHANTOMS is a perfect example of why I rag on Koontz as much as I do We all know he s capable of writing fantastic books, but he s also always been about quantity over quality For every amazing novel we get three to four piles of hot garbage This era of Koontz s output is almost entirely devoid of fuckery, though, because when we did come across a piece of steaming excrement, it was usually a rewritten repurposed novel from yesteryear, like THE HOUSE OF THUNDER or THE EYES OF DARKNESS All of the new books he released during this decade of productivity the mid to late 80s and early 90s were highly enjoyable At some point in the early 2000s, he found a formula that he proceeded to flog like the dead horse that it was From what I remember, this trend started with INTENSITY his last great book and rolled downhill from there I say all that because people insist I hate Koontz You see them in the comments of my updates Why do you insist on torturing yourself or I THOUGHT YOU WERE FINISHED WITH KOONTZ SQUEEEEEEEE What these fine people do not understand is that Koontz was, at one point in time, one of my literary heroes I grew up reading him, and the point of this rereading project with my good friend and opposing debate team, Delee I honestly love it when we disagree , is to find out where and when everything went wrong, because at some point Koontz went from writing a good book every year if you ignore the reprints and rewrites of pseudonym works to going completely off the fucking rails into a land populated by wordmills far as the eye can see Again, quantity over quality.And, yes, I understand there are legions of Koontz fans that think he s still pumping out pure literary cocaine Suffice it to say, I disagree with you But we re allowed to agree to disagree and move on, so calm your fucking chest meat, Beatrice What I didn t expect to find while rereading this book was much of the inspiration for Stephen King s IT From the voices in the drain to the final conflict, there are note for note recreations of scenes in this book inside of King s masterpiece That doesn t make me love IT any less, by the way, but the similarities are far from coincidence They re too many to note here, but I will be making a video about it for anyone who s interested One thing s for sure, tho, King blurbed Koontz s book, so we know or we can safely assume that King read it And, although the version I read was a 1996 variant that had it s pop culture references to things like the OJ trial updated in anticipation of the film adaptation s release in 1998, the original version of PHANTOMS was released in hardcover in 1983, a whole three years before IT was published I plan to read FLOATING DRAGON soon, Anthony, I promise In fact, I d like to do a whole series of videos on books people feel inspired King s 1100 page epic The one criticism I have for PHANTOMS is the Fletcher Kale storyline It felt unneeded in the worst possible way and caused the ending to drag on 30 pages past its welcome I m only deducting a half a star for it, which is why I m at 4.5 stars rounded up to 5 because, like high school E., Goodreads can t figure out fractions I do wonder if the Kale subplot was added to strengthen the satanic panic theme of the novel Sure, religion is mentioned throughout the book, but the theme was much heavier in Kale s later chapters, and it truly felt like an afterthought Something doesn t jive with me in those sections They feel farther removed from the main storyline for some reason I can t pin down The film completely removes the Kale character and story arc, and is all the better for not including it Hands down, there is some marvelous writing in this piece, some of his best work, and I have to tip my hat to Koontz for some impressive speculative fiction Donna Tartt once said that a novelist s first job is to entertain, and that s what this book does It entertains, consistantly I was able to shut off my inner content editor and suspend my disbelief, and that s all I can really ask for out of a work of fiction In summation If you only ever read another Dean Koontz book, you should probably read this one While it is not my favorite, it is a terrific example of Koontz when he s firing on all cylinders Mind, most of his work is a broken down jalopy with a cracked head and four flats, but this one Man, does she purr Final Judgment The reason I fell in love with Koontz and mourn his decline.Video review In 1979, Dean Koontz wrote a novel called Whispers which catapulted him to the bestseller list Koontz s status in the publishing world shifted drastically from a rather unknown suspense producer he became the hot stuff, and in 1981 Whispers rose to the top five of the New York Times paperback bestseller list But this article is not about Whispers While I m not a fan of the mentioned novel, and consider it to be largely tedious and overwrought with banal drama and sentimentality, it shows potential in one field the creep field There are sections in Whispers that are genuinely disturbing to this day, and it s been three decades since the original publication that s saying something.However, as big a success the book was, it didn t made Koontz a millionaire, nor a cult writer His publisher told him that if he wanted to build his career he d have to write a horror novel Whispers was marketed as horror, despite having little to do with the genre horror was popular at that time Koontz wrote four novels under various pseudonyms all largely forgotten, or less deservedly and after two years he finally gave in to the urgings and in 1983 came up with Phantoms.Now, in 1983 Koontz wasn t interested in angelic dogs and some weird new age philosophies, and most importantly he was still fresh with ideas and hasn t succumbed to the formula of rewriting the same book over and over Phantoms was the novel which gave Koontz the label of a horror writer a blessing or a curse Seems like a bit of both The book was an enormous success, earning praise of both audience and critics, who then returned to read his later work and were disappointed that it didn t had much in common with Phantoms.Koontz opens the novel in the Hitchcockian way With a bang the opening estabilishes the tension and introduces the reader to the nightmare which will most certainly follow The scream was distant and brief A woman s scream. Deputy Henderson is sitting alone in the town jail of Snowfield in California, a small lazy town, when he hears the scream The duty is dull not much happens in Snowfield in September, and the deputy is bored He listens intently but cannot hear anything a quick glance at the peaceful main street makes him think that he might have imagined the scream He almost wishes that somene had screamed being young and brave he s ready for some action He sighed, looked down at the magazine that lay on his desk and heard another scream As before, it was distant and brief, but this time it sounded like a man s voice It wasn t merely a shriek of excitement or even a cry of alarm it was the sound of terror. The deputy gets up from the chair, ready to investigate, and when he s almost halfway to the door he hears a sound in the office he has just left That was impossible He had been alone in the office all day, and there hadn t been any prisoners in the three holding cells since early last week The rear door was locked, and that was the only other way into the jail.When he turned, however, he discovered that he wasn t alone any And suddenly he wasn t the least bit bored. Phantoms opens as a locked room mystery what happened in the Deputy s office How could someone enter the place that was empty seconds before he left it Koontz restricts the action in the opening to a single place and a single protagonist, who is faced with danger that is shown but not explained, therefore making it intriguing and pushing the reader to the edge of his seat this drastically increases the tension, a feat that requires considerable skill to perform on such small space.The second chapter is titled Coming Home and introduces two characters Jennifer and Elisabeth Paige The two weren t close Jennifer s work as a doctor didn t allow her to spend much time on bonding However, on the death of their mother, Jennifer decides to take care of Lisa The sisters drive to Jennifer s home in Snowfield, and quickly notice an unusual quietness in the town Koontz does a great job with describing the surroundings in vivid detail, and thrusting two average people into a strange situation another Hitchockian trope he uses.The town is not merely quiet it looks dead The sidewalks, balconies, and porches were deserted Even in those shops and houses where there were lights burning, there was no sign of life Jenny s Trans Am was the only moving car on the long street. Snowfields appear to be uninhabited The sisters are scared, but decide to find out what has happened Koontz employs the best type of terror in this section of the book something sinister has apparently occured in Snowfield, but neither the reader nor the two sisters have a clue what is going on And it s not because of the lack of evidence soon the sisters find plenty of evidence, but it produces questions than explanations The terror in Snowfield has occured for no apparent reason, and there is no explanation for ir Or is there The silently crushing presence of a dead town is one of Koontz s best suspense in his whole career It s difficult to discuss the book without going into spoiler territory, so I ll refrain from it Have you ever wondered what might have happened on Marie Celeste, or who wrote Croatoan The same mystery of mass disappearance is employed masterfully by Koontz in the first section of Phantoms The horror employed by Koontz is the best one no boogeyman shouting BOO , but a silently malevolent presence, or an imagination of this presence serves for the unrelenting sense of slowly unfolding terror I started reading Phantoms when I was alone at night, and I was so into this section that I jumped when stray wind hit my window It is the best setting to read this novel silence equaling that in Snowfield, where little happens but the terror just mounts and mounts This is Koontz at his best, a writer enjoying fresh success and experimenting with joy in the genre that offers unlimited possibilities You want horror he asks All right I ll give you horror I ll give you the mother of all horror stories Unfortunately, the first part is the only flawless one In his previous novels, Koontz switched the narrative between protagonists, and does it again in Phantoms in chapter 9, Jenny uses the telephone to call a sheriff from the neighboring town From now on, the narrative will switch between a cast of characters, and this very technique largely destroys the brilliant creepiness of part one The horror that ratcheted up with each revelation is largely diminished by the entrance of new characters and the insight into their perspective now there s a sense of companionship and the two sisters are not alone, and when you re not alone in the dark the fear of the unknown largely disappears Each chapter offers a new perspective and the time spent with each character is too small to grow attached to them and to share their uneasiness and fright It s not the biggest disappointment, though Koontz approached writing Phantoms with Whispers fresh in his mind he wanted to provide a logically consistent explanation of the happenings in the town From the afterword I thought I would cleverly evade their horror or starve ultimatum by making Phantoms something of a tour de force, rolling virtually all the monsters of the genre into one beast, and also by providing a credible scientific explanation for the creature s existence Instead of fearless vampire hunters armed with wooden stakes, instead of werewolf trackers packing revolvers loaded with silver bullets, my protagonists would save themselves by using logic and reason to determine the nature of their mysterious enemy and to find a way to defeat it.Employing essentially the same tactic and sharing the same sentiment as Stoker in Dracula Ancient Darkness against Modern Wizardry of Technology destroys the book potential Phantoms would become a timeless horror classic if it did not try to be too muchPhantoms would be a horror story, yes, but it would also be science fiction, an adventure tale, a wild mystery story, and an exploration of the nature and source of myth. Koontz tries to handle too many genres, too many subplots at once for the thing to work The incredible, slowly unfolding horror of Part One disappears once the reader is shown what the protagonists are up against and how they mean to deal with the situation I m pretty sure that this section of the novel was spoofed in a certain movie that came out just a year later The end of the novel retreats to the mediocrity and disappointment of most of Koontz s work.Nevertheless, this is the novel that made Koontz known as a horror writer, and propably his sole title that has been influential in the genre and other media I m a big fan of the Silent Hill videogame franchise, and the influence of this work in the first installment is obvious and clear not to mention that the titular town has a Koontz street If only Phantoms held the mood of the first part, promised on the cover of my paperback edition a mountain country house constructed from wood, surrounded by ominous white fog, under a brooding red sky but I m sad to say it does not It s a real shame, because conceptually this is one of Koontz s very best books and it could be so much, much A wasted opportunity that will not be repeated. This reminded me so much of old school King that it s automatically in the keeper pile.10 10 would read again D Some pretty creepy parts, and a cool monster.But it dragged Most of the novel is the characters speculating, theorizing, deducing and discussing the nature of the monster There could have been less of this and monster action.Working toward the climax turned into a chore because I was turned off. I don t yet understand the hate for Koontz Currently I have read three of his novels midnight, watchers and now this one, and I have thoroughly enjoyed each of them Maybe I peaked too soon with his best works Hopefully not For me, this was a cracking read The first 100 pages or so were filled with dread, and so tension filled I felt like I was there with the two sisters, as they explored the town and discovered the horrors within It was damn creepy and really atmospheric As characters were introduced the tension just kept on building until finally the ancient enemy struck.The less said about the enemy the better, but it is one of the most malevolent forces in fiction I have read about A disturbing creature that has a terrific backstory and is well researched It is such a frightening presence throughout Finally I believe this was written around five years before Stephen kings IT I can t help but feel that King read this, and found a lot of ideas here that went into his own masterpiece There are just too many coincidences I mean the enemy in this novel is even referred to as IT many times I love Dean Koontz and his booksAnd I know that lots of reviews at goodreads doesn t seem to accompany adequately my sentiments Nevertheless boldly as I m here comes my humble review First of all let me say that with Phantoms you have here vintage Koontz, I mean a classic piece for what Dean Koontz books stands and are loved for.Snowfield, a little town in California will be haunted by unspeakable evil, and a small group of survivors fights against it That s all..Let me say, if you love Carpenters movie The Thing or Stephen Kings It , and if you are fond of The Exorzist then welcome in Snowfield and enjoy the ride, you will not be disappointed at allKoontz mix and blend Science Fiction with horror, and that he does masterfully well..By the way, Phantoms is really a genuine page turner, you will not be able to stop until The End Having said that, the characters are in my opinion not so well developed, that s the reason for retaining one star in my rating.But, a good and gripping read awaits you, it will entertain for sure and that s the main issue.Have fun and enjoy, all of you Dean I m fiercely competitive Like, ridiculously competitive To the point where I choose a favorite, and from that point on I m squarely behind that favorite until the bitter end The Chicago Cubs Star Wars Stephen King You get the picture Problem is, this causes me to miss out on things that threaten the supremacy of my favorites For several months I avoided The Lord of the Rings movies because I was afraid they d be better than the original Star Wars trilogy Then, when they were better, I decided to avoid watching the Harry Potter movies because they represented a new threat to my new cinematic darling Eventually, I broke down and watched the Harry Potter films after reading the books with my firstborn , and now I m a diehard Harry Potter fan, as well as a diehard Lord of the Rings fan, as well as a diehard Star Wars fan It really shouldn t have been this complicated, but what can I say I have problems Speaking of problemsI m as a big a fan of Stephen King as you can imagine, and it s no secret that on any bookstore shelf, King and Koontz are situated right there together, each with his own section of literary real estate For many years I ve been told I should read Koontz, but that silly, childish, competitive side of me dug its heels in and refused King was my favorite, so I didn t need to read Koontz So there shakes head at self Pitiful Well, I m happy to report that I ve finally matured enough to give Koontz a try My opinion of him He s really, really good While Stephen King will always be my favorite writer, I will unquestionably be reading Koontz novels His prose is deceptive At first glance I thought, What s the big deal This is good, but it s not that good It s not I get my own bookshelf good Then Koontz sucked me in By the time the lawmen from the neighboring town came to investigate the problems in Snowfield, I was hooked good and proper I enjoyed where Koontz took the story, and I found his writing and engrossing the further and further I delved into the narrative I also found the tale quite creative, which is saying a great deal The whole affair reminded me a little of the marvelous Preston and Child novel THE RELIC, which I absolutely loved SoI give this epic novel the rating it deserves five stars And I recant my embarrassing stubbornness and promise to keep maturing so I don t miss out on great writers and movies But I still won t root for anyone but the Cubs. This is another long time later reread for me It has some great scares and made me think twice about turning off my reading light, but it doesn t have the kick of Midnight or the cleverness of Watchers Still worth a read for the few pants crapping moments and well written gory detail.