Koontz's Odd Thomas back in 'Odd Apocalypse'

It’s hard to believe four years have passed since the last Odd Thomas novel, “Odd Hours,” came out. I’m not counting the three-part e-book, “Odd Interludes.” I’m waiting for that particular story to come out in paperback before I read it.

I have to say it’s good to have Odd Thomas back. He’s been sorely missed. The world needs Odd Thomas and his unique ability to fight evil whenever he encounters it. Also, in many ways, I think Odd Thomas is the author’s best character. Odd is richly drawn, not as a hero, but rather as an ordinary young man who simply wants to live life on his own terms and have his dead girlfriend back.

I’m certainly looking forward to the Odd Thomas movie this fall, hoping I’ll enjoy it as much as the author did when he and his wife saw an advance screening of the picture a few months ago.

The new novel, “Odd Apocalypse,” takes place weeks after the ending of “Odd Hours,” and includes the riddle-speaking, pregnant Annamaria from Magic Beach, who never seems to come right out and explain things to Odd. Instead, she allows him to find the answers to his questions on his own, which usually involves a great deal of physical pain and near death experiences for our ghost-seeing guy.

The adventure starts when they are invited to stay at the old estate of Roseland by its reclusive billionaire owner, Noah Wolflaw. The mansion was originally built during the early 1920s by movie mogul Constantine Cloyce, and it sits on 52 acres of prime real estate with a high wall around it and an armed guard at the front gate. Though huge, the estate has only a handful of servants to guard the place, take care of the grounds and to keep the manor clean.

All of this isn’t lost on Odd as he tries to figure out why he’s seeing the ghost of a blond-haired woman, dressed in a flowing nightgown and riding a black stallion, whenever he’s on the property. This, however, isn’t the half of it. He also meets an armed guard from the future, has a run-in with a swarm of giant bats, and gets chased by a number of piglike creatures that walk on two legs and are looking for someone to eat.

Holy mackerel, this is just in the first six chapters.

After that, Odd is in for some stark revelations that may cost him his life because nothing is as it seems in Roseland. Before it’s over, Odd will have a taste of what it’s like to encounter pure evil, while at the same time trying to understand the mechanics of time travel. All of this will happen as he attempts to keep himself, Annamaria and an unusual little boy alive.

Dean Koontz has gone all out with this new Odd Thomas novel. The author definitely knows how to weave an exciting tale with many twists and turns. The villains in Koontz’s novels are more evil and cunning with each outing, while the protagonist seems to barely survive his encounters.

The Odd Thomas series is supposed to wrap up with the eighth novel, “Saintly Odd,” and somehow Odd is to be reunited with the love of his life, Stormy Llewellyn, who was killed in the first book. I pray the author doesn’t kill off his most famous character. Life just wouldn’t be the same without Odd Thomas being around.

The next Odd Thomas novel, “Deeply Odd,” is due out at the beginning of April. Brace yourselves as the ending draws closer.

Wayne C. Rogers is the author of the horror novellas “The Encounter” and “The Tunnels,” both of which can be purchased at Amazon’s Kindle Store for 99 cents each.