The first word that comes to mind when describing The City is strange. But quickly following that are captivating, intriguing and unique. I've never read any of Dean Koontz's novels before, so I don't know how this one compares to his others, but I found this one to be one of those books that you don't quickly forget. I had a hard time getting into it, and I almost gave it up, but a quick look at some other reviews changed my mind. I'm so glad I didn't stop reading!
The City is a first-person narrative, told by Jonah Kirk, a nine-year-old boy living in Chicago in the 1970s. The world is full of turmoil--riots, wars, bombs and general unrest. Life is pretty normal for Jonah, until the day his father leaves him and his mother for good. After that, his life takes a different turn. He crosses paths with some very dangerous people. Having no idea just what he's encountered, Jonah confides in a Japanese man who lives in his apartment building, but no one else. Mr. Yoshioka, who was once interred at Manzanar, uses his Japanese connections to do some investigating. What they discover will lead to disaster, not only for themselves, but the whole city of Chicago.
While I was reading The City I had no idea where the story was going next. At the climax I barely had time to guess what was happening before it actually happened. That is the mark of a great story told by a great author. This is a pretty straight-forward story, but the inclusion of "Miss Pearl" takes it to a different level. In all honesty The City is not really the style of book that I usually like to read, but that's the great thing about reading to review. I get a chance to read things I wouldn't normally give a second thought to. If you're an old Dean Koontz fan, you're sure to enjoy this book. If you're like me, and have never read his novels before, I think this one is a good place to start!