The City by Dean Koontz

The CityThe City by Dean Koontz

#1 New York Times bestselling author Dean Koontz is at the peak of his acclaimed powers with this major new novel.

The city changed my life and showed me that the world is deeply mysterious. I need to tell you about her and some terrible things and wonderful things and amazing things that happened . . . and how I am still haunted by them. Including one night when I died and woke and lived again.

Here is the riveting, soul-stirring story of Jonah Kirk, son of an exceptional singer, grandson of a formidable “piano man,” a musical prodigy beginning to explore his own gifts when he crosses a group of extremely dangerous people, with shattering consequences. Set in a more innocent time not so long ago, The City encompasses a lifetime but unfolds over three extraordinary, heart-racing years of tribulation and triumph, in which Jonah first grasps the electrifying power of music and art, of enduring friendship, of everyday heroes.

The unforgettable saga of a young man coming of age within a remarkable family, and a shimmering portrait of the world that shaped him, The City is a novel that speaks to everyone, a dazzling realization of the evergreen dreams we all share. Brilliantly illumined by magic dark and light, it’s a place where enchantment and malice entwine, courage and honor are found in the most unexpected quarters, and the way forward lies buried deep inside the heart.

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Part coming of age story, part suspense novel, this is definitely not the Dean Koontz I recall from earlier novels.

I really wasn’t sure what to think when I began reading this novel. I have had good and bad feelings about the work of this author in the past. Sometimes his work would surprise and thrill me and yet other times I would come away feeling like I just didn’t get it. This novel, was a little bit of both.

If I had to choose what I liked about this novel and sum it up in a single paragraph, it would be that it is different and a bit unexpected. The writing is superb and the descriptions did not run away with the story as I have noticed in some of his other works. This was a new direction for Mr. Koontz to take his readers, and for the most part I thought it worked.

I won’t go so far as to say that every second of this book was exciting, but it was a thoughtful tale and had a lot of fully formed, independent characters that all added to the story. There was still some suspense and some tense moments as with his other works.

Overall, I gave this book three stars for being an example of an author taking a risk and making it work. If you are a fan of the older Koontz novels, this may strike you as a bit of an oddity but I encourage you to give it a shot.

This review is based on a complimentary copy from the publisher and provided through Netgalley. All opinions are my own.


14 thoughts on “The City by Dean Koontz

  1. I love Koontz but set him aside for a few years because his stories started getting quite repetitive for me. Perhaps this is the change up I was looking for!


    • I was actually one of the few, I think, that appreciated something different. I saw a lot of people talking about missing the old stuff, but I thought this was better in some regards and showed his strength as an author.


  2. Years ago I formed an opinion about Koontz. I didn’t like that his books all seemed a remake of others by other authors. I thought about giving him another try, having had years to hone his craft. I would rather read something fresh and new like this. Something with more originality to it.


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