RELEASE DAY REVIEW by Lorna: Ashley Bell by Dean Koontz (@deankoontz , @Mollykatie112)

Ashley BellFrom #1 bestselling author Dean Koontz—the must-read thriller of the year, for readers of dark psychological suspense and modern classics of mystery and adventure.
The girl who said no to death.
Bibi Blair is a fierce, funny, dauntless young woman—whose doctor says she has one year to live.

She replies, “We’ll see.”

Her sudden recovery astonishes medical science.

An enigmatic woman convinces Bibi that she escaped death so that she can save someone else. Someone named Ashley Bell.

But save her from what, from whom? And who is Ashley Bell? Where is she?

Bibi’s obsession with finding Ashley sends her on the run from threats both mystical and worldly, including a rich and charismatic cult leader with terrifying ambitions.

Here is an eloquent, riveting, brilliantly paced story with an exhilarating heroine and a twisting, ingenious plot filled with staggering surprises. Ashley Bell is a new milestone in literary suspense from the long-acclaimed master.





Ashley Bell
by Dean Koontz

n/a; standalone


Bantam (Imprint of Random House)

Publication Date
December 8, 2015

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I have been reading books by this author since way back in 1980, I think. I have enjoyed all of the ones I have read, even the one I put down and never picked back up-What the Night Knows. Put down because it scared the stuffing out of me-not because it wasn’t well written. After finishing this book yesterday, I really had to think hard about what I wanted to say.

The main character of this book is not Ashley Bell, instead it’s Bibi Blair, a young, twenty two year old, already published author. She’s probably one of the most refreshing characters that I have read about in awhile. She’s almost impossibly smart, and even at a very young age, impossibly mature for her age. The kind of little girl that when faced with a paranormal event, keeps it to herself rather than bother her free spirit parents with it. When it happens as an adult, she still keeps it to herself, and runs with it. Besides Bibi and her parents, Bibi’s fiance, Pax, a Navy Seal, is also featured-right down to his latest mission in the Middle East. Bibi’s best friend Pogo rounds out the main characters nicely, as a surfer dude with a heart of gold.

The premise? That’s an extremely hard one to explain, due to the possibility of spoiling the whole thing. I can say that Bibi does have a rare and inoperable brain tumor. I can also say that, that being said, this also morphs into quite the adventure story. Or woman on the run story. Why? That’s something I can’t explain. I can also say that it’s a story with supernatural undertones at times. And that it has quite a twist to it. Okay, enough said!

This book, all 560 pages of it, could probably been at least a hundred pages shorter and be much more tightly written. I say that because, I started skimming at some points-something I rarely do. The author would write a really long paragraph just describing the sunset or what the day was like. There’s also a chunk of the story that takes place on one of Pax’s missions and I still am not sure why it was that necessary to the story. And there was so much of those types of things, that it really took me out of the main story at times. I am such a fan of Koontz and his writing, it almost hurts me to have to write that.

All that being said, the story was extremely engrossing, at it’s heart. Of course it’s mostly well written, extremely eloquent, and intricately plotted. The chapters are short, but it changes back and forth to other points of view or goes back in time, so much, to the point that especially towards the end, It kind of upset me. And that’s because I HAD to know what was going on. You really won’t know everything until way into the story; you might think you do, but you really don’t.

Recommended to die hard Koontz fans, and fans of the paranormal, especially of reads that are very different from the norm.


Lorna Finished

The review copy of Ashley Bell was supplied by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.

About Dean Koontz

Dean KoontzAcknowledged as “America’s most popular suspense novelist” (Rolling Stone) and as one of today’s most celebrated and successful writers, Dean Ray Koontz has earned the devotion of millions of readers around the world and the praise of critics everywhere for tales of character, mystery, and adventure that strike to the core of what it means to be human.

Dean R. Koontz has also published under the names Leigh Nichols, Brian Coffey, David Axton, Owen West, Deanna Dwyer and Aaron Wolfe.

Dean lives in Southern California with his wife, Gerda, their golden retriever, Anna, and the enduring spirit of their golden, Trixie.

Author Links

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  1. bookwormbrandee says:

    *haha* I’m wondering if What the Night Knows is the one I tried to read back in 1994…I didn’t get too far into before I was too creeped out to finish. Perhaps I need to give Koontz another shot. That was the only time I gave him a try but you have me curious about Ashley Bell, Lorna. I love it when an author keeps me guessing like it seems Koontz did here. 🙂

    1. lornak99 says:

      I think it was just a few years ago and I paid a big price for it. It was so scary I just couldn’t go on with the read. I used to love his scary books, but What the Night Knows, just gave me the willies. Ashley Bell was nowhere near his best book, but was very readable and intricately plotted 🙂 Thanks for stopping by and all the tweets!

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