Go to Homepage   Dean Koontz: The Face


Crescent Blues Book ViewsBantam (Hardcover), ISBN 0-553-80248-8

Channing Manheim's moniker of "the Face" stems from his eminence as the top actor in Hollywood. But not everyone lives in envy of the superstar. His son, Aelfric ("Fric" for short) calls him "Ghost Dad," because the actor rarely spends time with the boy. And someone sends vaguely menacing presents -- an apple with a plastic eye stitched inside it and a cookie jar of "O," "W" and "E" Scrabble® tiles, among others.

Book: dean koontz, the face.
Face won't be back until the day before Christmas, so Ethan Truman, Manheim's head of security, refuses to panic. Nevertheless, Truman begins increasing security patrols and surveillance. But then he dies. Twice. In the same day. But apparently he didn't really die. And neither did his friend Dunny, despite the hospital's claims. So how did Truman acquire a set of small bells given to him by a paramedic from the ambulance he died in?

Fric begins receiving strange phone calls on his private line at the grand estate. Mysterious Caller, as Fric dubs him, warns the boy to find a secret hiding place because Moloch plans to kidnap the boy. At first Fric doesn't believe the voice on the phone, but after an appearance by Mysterious Caller in the house, Fric begins gathering supplies for his hidey-hole.

With the help of a former partner on the police force, Truman begins putting the pieces of the bizarre puzzle together and finally determines that Fric, not Face, may be the target of the stalker. But the stalker's seamy acquaintances know their way around the estate, and the kidnap plot appears foolproof.

The Face starts out rather slow, which seems a bit uncharacteristic for a Dean Koontz tale. The final showdown between Truman and the stalker makes for a page-turning and gripping read, but this book won't be numbered among Koontz's best.

Jen Foote

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