Another of Dean Koontz's early thrillers, this is another fine example of the author's early work before he began to get a bit cliched and more better suited for the mundane mass market! The Bad Place is, at its heart, a mystery thast the reader is asked to unravel along with the main characters......
Frank Pollard wakes up in an alley with no knowledge of how he got there or where he came from. Pursued by a man who can fire blue energy waves from his hands, Frank flees into the night and ends up seeking the assistance of Private Detectives Dakota And Dakota.
Bobby and Julie are a couple who have dealt with some strange cases in their time but none quite as strange as this.
Frank appears to be teleporting in his sleep and not all of the places he visits are of this world. What is more, he is part of a bizarre and twisted family legacy and his brother will do quite literally anything to get his hands on him again. For Frank's Brother is a psycho and, once he gets a sniff of Frank's trail, no one around him is safe!
This is a great thriller that moves at a terrific pace. It is one of Koontz's shorter novels and a fairly easy read. The characters are all very likeable and there is a lot here to like. Part of the premise has to kind of be taken at face value as Koontz does his usual trick of explaining stuff away with very pseudo-science that may or may not be strictly scientifically accurate but if you can accept some of the more basic concepts behind what is going on then you are in for a treat of a ride.
I have always quite liked this novel and though it is not Koontz's best, it is still certainly better than much of his more recent work! It is definitely an above average thriller and unlike anything else you are likely to read; though many of the themes here are reminscent of other similar ones used by Koontz before and since and the characters could easily be transported into pretty much any other Koontz novel with very little discrepancy.
Still, this is a book that is certainly worth a read........
I love Dean Koontz's books. My full-to-bursting bookshelves hold a copy of every book he has ever written and The Bad Place is one of my favourites. The story begins as Frank Pollard awakens in an alley. He knows nothing about himself except his name, and has no idea how he got into the alley or where he came from. He only knows that he is in grave danger. Over the next few days, Frank develops a paralysing fear of sleep because he keeps waking in strange places, with blood on his hands and with weird, frightening objects in his pockets. Fearing that he is a danger to others, Frank goes to husband-and-wife private investigators Bobby and Julie Dakota for help. Their investigations soon lead to an evil and malevolent figure who is stalking Frank, and their lives, those of their staff, and that of Julie's gentle, Downs Syndrome brother Thomas, are threatened. Koontz's charm as a writer stems mainly from his ability to be mainstream and popular, without being trashy. His books are always beautifully written, his descriptions vivid, his plots interesting and unusual and his dialogue believeable. You may be reading a best seller, but it is quality and even the most snobbish reader must surely allow that. His writing has so much more class than, say, Steven King's, and his grasp of pace is such that you never find yourself skimming the pages, wishing he'd get on with it. His books are also very scary indeed, though usually it is the premise that is frightening - he doesn't rely on gore and shock tactics to frighten you like other horror writers. The best thing about Koontz though - and this book in particular - is his characters. They are always so beautifully drawn and so detailed that you feel that you know them. Even the more minor characters seem three-dimensional. As you read, you genuinely start to care about what happens to Frank, Bobby, Julie, Thomas and the others.
Koontz helps you to delve into their lives and know them, by showing glimpses other authors don't - like their favourite music or hobbies, what they love to eat or drink, things they care about or hate, their hopes and dreams and the strengths and weaknesses of their relationships with each other. At the end of the book, I was actually sad to put it down because I knew that I would really miss those characters. They had almost become friends. I learned to really like them. I almost wished I could mail them and see how they were getting on. And surely, that is a measure of a really good book. The Bad Place by Dean Koontz is published by Headline Feature (paperback 1991), runs to 500 pages and is available for £5.59 from www.amazon.co.uk.
I got into Koontz books borrowing Shadowfires, and the Bad PLace is my second read. You either get hooked by a book or don't and both these did for me. How to not give the plot away?? Well.. It starts with a man called Candy who's a twisted nutter, two detectives and their down's syndrome brother being introduced. The way this is written is great, each chapter switching character and leaving you wondering who/what the next one brings. We slowly discover little character traits and perversitys which give clues to the links between each person, and really makes you guess where it's all going. To leave you all intrigued, this book just builds the tension,starting with a sickening set of killings, and then just making you hang on for the ride. Written in a similar syle to Shadowfires, but that's no bad thing.. Brilliant.
Waking in a dark, damp alley, Frank Pollard can remember nothing but his name. Now everytime he wakes up he has blood on his hands and bizarre objects in his pockets.