Other Emily
by Koontz, Dean R.






*Starred Review* One day, Emily Carlino simply disappeared while driving in California. Police assumed she was another victim of serial killer Ronny Lee Jessup, but her body was never found. Ten years later, with Jessup in prison, David Thorne still hasn't come to terms with Emily's loss. But when he meets and becomes involved with a young woman who has some of the same qualities as Emily (from her looks to the way she kisses), David begins to feel happiness again. Until the similarities between her and Emily become uncomfortably close. Could this be Emily herself, returned as another woman? Or has David been targeted by someone with a secret agenda? Torn between love and fear, he fights to keep himself from shattering, even as he tries to figure out the truth. This could easily have been a mediocre thriller-the premise, suggesting Hitchcock's Vertigo, is hardly fresh-but in Koontz's talented hands it's a gripping and downright frightening book. That's one of Koontz's gifts: he can take a familiar story, one that other writers might re-create in a paint-by-the-numbers fashion, and turn it into something genuinely captivating. Koontz remains a masterful storyteller in multiple genres, and this is one of his best.HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Koontz, who has written more than 100 novels and sold more than 450 million copies, remains one of popular literature's superheroes. Copyright 2021 Booklist Reviews.





*Starred Review* One day, Emily Carlino simply disappeared while driving in California. Police assumed she was another victim of serial killer Ronny Lee Jessup, but her body was never found. Ten years later, with Jessup in prison, David Thorne still hasn't come to terms with Emily's loss. But when he meets and becomes involved with a young woman who has some of the same qualities as Emily (from her looks to the way she kisses), David begins to feel happiness again. Until the similarities between her and Emily become uncomfortably close. Could this be Emily herself, returned as another woman? Or has David been targeted by someone with a secret agenda? Torn between love and fear, he fights to keep himself from shattering, even as he tries to figure out the truth. This could easily have been a mediocre thriller-the premise, suggesting Hitchcock's Vertigo, is hardly fresh-but in Koontz's talented hands it's a gripping and downright frightening book. That's one of Koontz's gifts: he can take a familiar story, one that other writers might re-create in a paint-by-the-numbers fashion, and turn it into something genuinely captivating. Koontz remains a masterful storyteller in multiple genres, and this is one of his best.HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Koontz, who has written more than 100 novels and sold more than 450 million copies, remains one of popular literature's superheroes. Copyright 2021 Booklist Reviews.





Hair-raising suspense laced with horror and a generous mixture of romance flavor Koontz‚??s latest. Successful California novelist David Thorne has been haunted for 10 years about the fate of the woman he loves. Twenty-five-year-old Emily Carlino disappeared one dark and stormy night (this story has plenty of those), and Thorne suspects the worst. Meanwhile, Ronald Lee Jessup is in prison for the abduction, torture, rape, and murder of young women. He claims to have abducted 14 more than police know about, but he won‚??t divulge their names. Thorne visits him in prison under the pretense of writing a book, but he really wants to know if the "homicidal psychopathic sentimentalist" killed Emily. A dead-on Emily look-alike shows up in Thorne‚??s life, identical right down to the golden birthmark below her navel. She calls herself Maddison Sutton and claims to be an assassin of "extremely wicked people," the only difference from the gentle Emily, who would never have killed anyone. Otherwise, they are both in the "highest rank of beauties" and both age 25 at the time Thorne knows them. Thorne is understandably mystified and suspects a charade. An honorable man, he will accept no imitations. He wants the real¬ Emily, or to know her fate for certain. His search for truth takes him to the "hideous labyrinthine cellar" of Jessup‚??s home, and truly scary stuff happens. Koontz has a deft touch with phrasing that sets him apart from many suspense writers: "The fleecy clouds alchemized to gold," and "The sun had mined a golden treasure from the western sky" are, well, golden examples. On the other hand, he occasionally shifts his wordsmithing machine into overdrive: "Legions of rain marched across the roof, lightning napalmed the sky," and "a thousand knuckles of rain rapped the windshield." And in the enough-already category: "Vicious hatred‚?¶psychotic hatred‚?¶homicidal rage‚?¶must have hated‚?¶demonic hatred" are all stuffed into one five-line paragraph that apparently relates to hatred. Tense, scary, and twisty. Horror fans will love it. Copyright Kirkus 2021 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.






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