Hideaway by Dean Koontz

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Hideaway by Dean Koontz

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Category: Horror
Rating: 1/5
Reviewer: Dave Martin
Reviewed by Dave Martin
Summary: Hideaway is a disappointing and disjointed novel unworthy of Koontz. It's one of this patchy author's poorer efforts. The plot is improbable and the writing devoid of passion. Not recommended.
Buy? No Borrow? No
Pages: 501 Date: December 1992
Publisher: Headline Book Publishing Ltd
ISBN: 0747238154

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Lindsey barely survives a car crash into an icy river. Hatch, her husband is actually pronounced dead for over sixty minutes. He is brought back to life by an experimental resuscitation. To everyone's amazement, he seems to make a complete recovery. However, his near-death experience has left him with disturbing visions of murder and violence that seem all too real. Is he linked to a being of murderous intent and is it all his own fault for cheating Death?

Dean Koontz writes either sublime page-turning thrillers or clichéd tripe. This is what comes of publishing several novels a year. Inevitably, many of them will be sub-standard and the quality will suffer. Unfortunately, "Hideaway" is a perfect example of this. This is largely because the plot has not even a small shred of credibility. Vital to the success of any supernatural thriller is a tight plot you can believe. "Hideaway" has a plot that is so tenuous that it is virtually impossible. Koontz suggests that Hatch is somehow inextricably linked to a half-demon murderer known as Vassago. However, the reason for this is never explored. There is no attempt made to explain the improbable linking of the two and in fact, the book's blurb seems to contradict the plot itself. The sleeve claims Hatch has brought a demon back with him due to his experience yet Koontz makes it clear throughout that the proclaimed demon has been on Earth for a number of years. He even hints that "Vassago" may not even be a demon at all; rather he is a maniac with delusions of grandeur. Such gaping plot holes make "Hideaway" an unconvincing and disjointed read at best.

The plot is not exactly propelled along either thanks to an almost complete lack of action. Koontz's characters are all so apathetic to the events going on around them that it is hard to care what happens to them. Even the murderer and his victims seem completely uninterested as the story ambles along. Characters have no depth, which means I cannot share an empathy with their plights while settings have no originality. From the dank, dark fun house to the jaded Private Detective, this a book of cliché and Koontz is clearly churning to a "thriller by numbers" formula.

Koontz's writing, usually full of rich, vivid imagery and atmosphere is devoid of any passion, flow or direction. Dialogue is stunted and this results in no reason to keep reading. Add to this a complete lack of pace and even in the hit and miss world of Dean Koontz this is a poor effort. Pick it up in a charity shop, read the first page and the last. Reading anything in-between would be a complete waste of your time.

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Buy Hideaway by Dean Koontz at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Hideaway by Dean Koontz at Amazon.co.uk Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.
Buy Hideaway by Dean Koontz at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Hideaway by Dean Koontz at Amazon.com.


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Wendy11972 said:

I love Koontz but find that I forget a lot of his stories fairly quickly after reading unless it was exceptional like Intensity.

James Waterworth said:

Having read his review I must agree with everything Dave Martin has to say about this book, Koontz seems these days to go for quantity rather than quality and does his public followers no favours, if only he were more like James Herbert who is the complete opposite.