Review: Watchers by Dean Koontz

From a top secret government laboratory come two genetically altered life forms….

One is a magnificent dog of astonishing intelligence.

The other, a hybrid monster of a brutally violent nature.

Both are on the loose…

The explosive story of a man and a woman, caught in a relentless storm of mankind’s darkest creation… 

Action-packed.  Intriguing.  Mysterious.  Terrifying.  Endearing…. I could go on and on.  Although it took me forever and a dog’s age to get through (and I will get to why momentarily), Watchers really was an amazing book.  I found myself all teary twice and literally sitting on the edge of my seat for the last 3rd of the book.  You instantly fall in love with the main character Einstein and find yourself hoping to whatever god you pray to that everything will turn out ok.  Fantastic book overall!

Now the unpleasantness:  This is the third book I’ve read written by Dean Koontz and I’ve found that he has a pattern to his writing.  Depending on the characters, this isn’t always a problem.  Mr. Koontz writes in such a way that the character intro and whatnot is done slowly after you’ve been thrown into this horrible, tumultuous, gut-wrenching situation on the first page.  You spend the first 50 pages scratching your head, playing catch up and trying to figure out who is who and what the HELL just happened.  Like I said, not a problem if you have the right characters to keep things going while you’re catching up.  I had a real hard time with this factor in Watchers.  There are 3 groups of main characters in this book and 1 of the groups just did not hold my attention well.  Every time I got to a scene with them, I found myself zoning out.  It wasn’t until the last third of the book that this particular group of characters really held my attention.

Now, with that being said, I still strongly feel that Watchers is a GREAT book.  Although I didn’t make a connection with that character group, that may be my problem, not the book.  Due to this fact, I am not naming any character names.  I’d rather you as the reader not have any preconceived notions and give Watchers a shot. 

On another note entirely, Mr. Koontz once again astounds me with his wealth of knowledge.  Although this book was published in 1987 (one of the oldest I have and probably will review), this book could EASILY be placed in the modern day world.  It was written in such a way that when you really pay attention to the details, you’re not left with a thought like “man, this is old!”  The story is written in a timeless manner.  To top that off, the subject matter this book deals with is incredible….and cruelly terrifying at the same time. 

I recommend this book to anyone who happens to be a fan of classic Dan Brown (i.e. ‘Digital Fortress’ or ‘Deception Point’).  Although they have much different writing styles, you will find yourself right at home in these pages.  I give Watchers 4.0 stars!


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