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Odd Thomas, a fry cook who can see dead people, was first introduced to readers as a teenager in 2003's Odd Thomas. An engaging young man who peppers his narratives (Brother Odd; Odd Hours) with wisecracks, he also seems to have a sagelike understanding of humanity. As we encounter him again in this new adventure, he is a guest at Roseland, a sinister Pacific Coast estate set farther from reality's borders than Odd has ventured in the past. Here he is compelled by one of the restless dead to rescue a young boy from the grips of Roseland before he, like its other inhabitants, is no longer able to leave. VERDICT With this offering Odd's fanbase with fantasy-horror devotees is certain to grow, while previous admirers of his quirky charms will not be disappointed. Odd's screen debut, starring Anton Yelchin and Willem Dafoe, later this fall is certain to attract new readers. [See Prepub Alert, 1/30/12.]-Nancy McNicol, Hamden P.L., CT (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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At the start of bestseller Koontz's wry, offbeat fifth Odd Thomas novel (after 2008's Odd Hours), short-order cook Thomas, who has prophetic dreams and can "see the spirits of the lingering dead," has a vision while he's a guest at a California retreat known as Roseland-of a blonde woman in a white nightgown on a black horse. Though unable to speak, this ghostly woman is able to communicate that her son, who's also at Roseland, is in danger. Thomas embarks on a quest to avenge the woman's death that will involve brutish piglike creatures that walk erect and travel in packs as well as secret discoveries by the legendary Nikolas Tesla. This supernatural thriller surely ranks as one of the series' funniest. Even as Thomas fights the forces of darkness, he observes, "Of course, one must always remember that although The Sound of Music is the most feel-good movie musical of all time, it is crammed full of Nazis." (Aug.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.
In his fifth adventure, Odd Thomas is a guest at Roseland, an immense California estate near the Pacific, thanks to Annamarie, who hitched her wagon to his in Odd Hours (2008). Although barely arrived, Odd already has seen the spirit of another murder victim seeking justice. The spectral woman on a horse, who wants Odd to rescue her son, isn't all Odd's seeing. Strange rivers of smoke darken Roseland's skies, and ferocious swine-men murderously scour the estate only to vanish as suddenly as they appear. Warily exploring, Odd discovers a 9-year-old boy who claims to be 90-plus and that his host, Noah Wolflaw, is one and the same as Roseland's original owner, a newspaper and movie mogul still alive at about 130, though looking only 50. This is the most fanciful and by far the most leisurely Odd Thomas escapade. Always prone to wisecracking; mooning over his lost love, Stormy; and kvetching about the state of the world like a right-wing moralist, Odd greatly indulges in all three in an sf-tinged tale seemingly indebted to H. G. Wells (The Time Machine, The Island of Dr. Moreau), H. P. Lovecraft (the Herbert West stories), and Orson Welles (Citizen Kane). Fortunately, Koontz makes Odd's narrative voice as winning as ever. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Koontz hits best-sellers lists, and with his name recognition, publisher publicity, and the press buzz behind his latest novel, expect the same results.--Olson, Ray Copyright 2010 Booklist