The Servants of Twilight by Dean Koontz

(No Series)

An ordinary parking lot in southern California. Christine Scavello and her six-year-old son are accosted by a strange old woman. "I know who you are," she snaps at the boy. "I know what you are." A scream, a threat --- and then a grotesque act of violence. Suddenly Christine's pride and joy, her only son, is targeted by a group of religious fanatics. They've branded him the Antichrist. They want to kill him. And they are everywhere ...

As a bit of a back story, I grew up watching this movie. I mainly watched VHS tapes as a teenager in my room as I didn't have cable in there, and always loved this movie, which was a made for TV special. So of course I have wanted to read the book for years, thinking the story was awesome, and if the movie was good, the book is usually even better right?

Well, the book was basically just as good as the movie in this case. The first half of the book seriously follows the movie, down to dialogue and step by step action. There was little difference for quite awhile. The second half was the big changer and many things were altered. It works well in both versions, I think.

I always like anti-christ children plots. Of course everyone will instantly think of The Omen. Maybe because there's only so much you can do with this kind of story, but I haven't encountered that many anti-christ children stories. This one was intriguing because the leader of a cult has targeted a small child and claims he is the antichrist, and his mother is frantically trying to save her child and hide him from the crazy lady's followers by hiring a private investigator.

There's tons of tension during many of these chases, and you never know who can be trusted as being a secret member of the cult. On at least one of the occasions, someone the PI  trusted and knew for years was a secret member and convert. There's much violence as well, especially with the poor dog, and slowly learning the back story is about as fascinating as the story going on.

Koontz sometimes skips points of views too much for my tastes; here, he has a limited character circle and focuses on the same main people. They are convincing, likeable, and it was easy to latch on to their situation as realistic and life threatening. Kudos for that. To me this is one of his better books.

The biggest flaw was the story started dragging on a little at the end and lost a little steam. Still, it's effective and this chilling book will stay with you for awhile.


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