Published by Bantam on Expected publication: July 1st 2014
Genres: Paranormal, Thriller
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.
While Dean Koontz is a beautiful writer for some reason The City did not do as much for me as his other books have. Although it was an easy read, it was also very wordy. While I enjoyed the narration from the main character, I think knowing his every single thought was a bit much.
At about 22% things had finally started happening. Prior to then I was involved but it was getting harder and harder to remain involved. After that I found myself struggling, even with his beautiful writing, to stay in the story and to not skim. And I really hate to say that I wanted to skim!
The plot also isn’t linear. Jonah is telling the story and he mentions at the beginning that he would rather tell the story out loud than write it down and it does seem like someone is talking. That part was fabulously done. But Jonah goes back and forth in time and with his different recollections that soon I was wondering when everything was going to come together.
There are not a ton of characters but I think with the back and forth that it was hard to fit them into the puzzle and as much as I was enjoying the narration I also found myself become frustrated.
I did really enjoy Jonah’s character and his story telling. It really does seem like these things happened when he was younger and Koontz has a remarkable ability to show this through a nine year old’s eyes. It was completely believable, just really wordy!
The short: I enjoyed it being an easy read but I think some of the wordiness could have been edited. I’m not sure if normal Dean Koontz fans will fall in love with this one as it is not on par with his horror writing. It’s good but not great.
Dean lives in Southern California with his wife, Gerda, their golden retriever, Anna, and the enduring spirit of their golden, Trixie.