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Review: Saint Odd, by Dean Koontz

HERB JOHNSON – GAZETTE CONTRIBUTOR
When Odd Thomas and Stormy Llewellyn were teenagers living in Pico Mundo, CA, they went to the carnival and put 25 cents into the fortune-telling machine.
Out came a card that told them they were destined to be together forever, a good thing, since they were madly in love.
But then a bad thing happened. There was a mass shooting at the mall and Stormy was one of the victims. Odd kept the card with him when he left town and started on a series of adventures. Stormy was never far from his thoughts.
Since the title refers to Odd as a saint and there is a large sign on the front stating that this is “the stunning conclusion to the acclaimed Odd Thomas series,” it is safe to assume that when Odd decides to return to Pico Mundo, that will be his last stop. It is probably the least exciting of his many adventures.
In previous books, Odd had a ghost dog who followed him around. He also hung out with the ghosts of people like Elvis Presley and Frank Sinatra. There was some action, a lot of it based on the fact that Odd can see ghosts . . . and bodachs. (Bodachs are evil creatures that like to gather where there is carnage.) Odd travelled around and did his bit to save the world from as much evil as he could manage.
In the last book in the series, there is still evil, but Odd seems to spend more time contemplating the relationship between Good and Evil than actually getting involved.
Koontz has always been very explicit when it comes to Good and Evil. He puts them right up front and has his characters discuss them. He even has his people look into their own souls and think hard about whether or not they are doing the right thing.
Odd himself is a gentle soul but he almost invariably winds up using firearms to kill people. This time out, he kills about eight.
The story line is simple. There is a threat to the town of Pico Mundo and Odd has come back to save everyone. Just barely below the surface is the idea that he, in the end, will be reunited with Stormy, his true love.
Note: Ashley Bell, Koontz’s latest novel, is very long and quite strange. Approach with caution.

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