Monday, December 06, 2010

Odd Is On Our Side, by Dean Koontz and Fred Van Lente

Contest Book #4

Odd Is On Our Side is the second graphic novel to feature Odd Thomas, a twenty-year-old fry cook living in the fictional Californian town of Pico Mundo. Odd—a character first introduced in Dean Koontz's 2003 novel Odd Thomas—has a loving girlfriend, a gift for making pancakes, and the ability to see dead people. Unfortunately, seeing ghosts isn't quite as useful as hearing them, so when a ghost wants Odd's help (and they often do), they have to communicate via the supernatural equivalent of a game of charades.

In this installment (a prequel to the main series), Odd and his gun-toting girlfriend Stormy attempt to enjoy Pico Mundo's annual Halloween celebration despite Odd's increasingly grim forebodings about the festivities. Ghosts ranging from the specter of Elvis Presley to the spirit of a little girl killed in Pico Mundo years earlier are trying to tell him something, but their warnings don't make sense—something is clearly wrong, but how can Odd and Stormy catch the bad guy if they don't even know what crime has been committed?

I have frequently thought that Koontz's stories make better graphic novels than they do standard books, a theory further verified by Odd is On Our Side. Koontz has a lively imagination and an appealingly dark sense of humor, but his writing style is no more than competent. One could wish that the book's interior artwork—by Australian manga artist Queenie Chan—was more interesting, and Nathan pointed out that the cover art looks like one of those dancing-silhouette iPod commercials (it totally does, too!), but Koontz's many fans can rest assured that the $10.99 they'll need to shell out for Odd Is On Our Side are entertainment dollars well spent.

[Review based on a publisher-provided copy.]

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2 Comments:

Blogger Sheryl said...

"Unfortunately, seeing ghosts isn't quite as useful as hearing them, so when a ghost wants Odd's help (and they often do), they have to communicate via the supernatural equivalent of a game of charades."
That note right there has me interested. That sounds like an engagingly different take on interacting with the supernatural.

6:54 AM

 
Blogger Yulianka said...

Actually, it's cute. Elvis stops by a lot, trying to communicate via hip swivels.

8:49 AM

 

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