Sunday, April 4, 2010
Review: The Taking by Dean Koontz
I began tinkering with the idea of giving my thoughts regarding Dean Koontz's The Taking, then thought better of it because everybody knows this guys career and legacy. But, I countered, The Taking is such a derivative mish-mash of utter shite; this guy deserves to be punished because other reviewers certainly are not doing it.
He's prolific; he's churned out about a trillion words and that gives him credence in the community and definitely warrants success. However, The Taking is this author's futile attempt at watching waayyy too many movies, trying to replicate them, and being utterly influenced to an extent it's laughable. He has no miniature in this story; his sentences are cliched and just awful. Definitely, he's produced wonders: Life Expectancy reads like Ian Irving and I adored Cold Fire. But The Taking reeks of the unfortunate pitfalls prolific writers eventually succumb too ... I could not believe my eyes when I read sentences such as: The spider was as hairy as a member of The Taliban. Just what does this mean? Can we forgive him this racist remark just because he's Dean Koontz? Certainly not. The purple, flowery prose is without precedent in this doozie. Everything's got a quality only in superlative dreams; and there's always a mystical meaning: even watching something as mundane as your pooch taking a crap is fodder for cerebral lines. The constant persistent theme of canines is utterly boring and we always have the feeling of been there done that. He loves dogs. We get it. Try not to hammer it home and maybe we'll visit one of your next attempts.
Basically, it's the same story over and over: just like Lightning we have a female protagonist with her adoring husband. She's had a rotten childhood and is looking for a kind of sweet succor that will liberate her. Bad things happen. This time involving the same kind of aliens that perpetuated M Night's Shyamalan's Signs. She ultimately confronts them and it reaffirms her notion of life, the universe, and everything that is inherently good.
A scathing, controversial review? Perhaps. I'll probably be lynched for just being jealous. But sometimes critics need to criticize.