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Frankenstein: Lost Souls: A Novel Paperback – January 25, 2011

3.7 out of 5 stars 358 customer reviews
Book 4 of 5 in the Frankenstein Series

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Dean Koontz on Frankenstein: Lost Souls

When it comes to predicting the future, I am Nostradamus's idiot great nephew. In the 1980s, I believed that by 2010, we would all be traveling regularly to no-sales-tax shopping malls on the moon and zipping over to Mars for a Frappuccino. I thought we would be enjoying genetically engineered house pets like cadogs (half cat, half dog, all affection), miniature eaglebbits (flying rabbits), dry chihuahuas (little dogs that never need to pee), crocodobers (highly effective home guard dogs), and spongerbils (sponge gerbils that not only can be cuddled but will mop your floors and wring one another out in a bucket of water).

I also predicted that by now we would be flying everywhere with personal jet packs, and carrying clever autofloss machines to strip the bugs out of our teeth in thirty seconds flat after landing. Back in 1980, I predicted that by now John Belushi would be president, but I don't count this one a complete miss, because Al Franken is a United States Senator, which I admit surprises me considering that Mr. Franken isn't nearly funny enough to hold high office.

When I finished the third Frankenstein novel, Dead and Alive, I foresaw that it was the end of the series. As it turns out, I was as right about this as I was about my prediction that the annual Academy Awards TV special would be hosted five years running by Muammar Gaddafi.

My original trilogy brought to an end a story cycle, but the themes of Shelley's novel are more timely by the month. I realized that I could do much more with the concept than I had done thus far. Furthermore, an entirely new kind of technology of creature-creation occurred to me, and it was a lot more terrifying than the messy-gooey, strictly biological New Race that Victor developed in the first trilogy. By moving the setting from New Orleans to Rainbow Falls, Montana, I was able, as well, to change the atmosphere and to have fun with Armageddon occurring in snow-and-cowboy country.

As always, if readers hadn't been so enthusiastic about these books, I wouldn't have been able to proceed with the series. I appreciate your support more than I can say. I've received a lot of mail from readers who said they didn't read these novels for the longest time because the whole Frankenstein thing turned them off, but when they finally tried them, they discovered these weren't at all like what they expected, and they loved them. I always try not to give you the same old same old. Lost Souls has the flavor of my first three Frankenstein titles, but otherwise it does not clump over familiar territory. This time, Victor is much scarier and smarter than his predecessor, and his war against humanity is a blitzkrieg that comes on like a storm.

Lost Souls, like the books after it, is self-contained even though it is a part of a larger narrative. You can plunge into it and, if you like it, then go back to Prodigal Son, City of Night, and Dead and Alive if you wish. I am currently working on The Dead Town, recounting the next phase of the war against humanity, and I suppose it might sound a little strange to say I'm having a good time chronicling our doom.

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

Set in Rainbow Falls, Mont., Koontz's goofy, grisly fourth riff on the Frankenstein theme (after Dead and Alive) finds Victor--previously presumed dead but apparently as easily resurrected as cinematic incarnations of his monster--perfecting his "New Race" of humanoid replicants. As affectless pod-person lookalikes gradually replace the town's citizens, the task of saving humanity from Victor and his megalomaniacal plans to "destroy the soul of the world" fall once again to husband-and-wife detectives Michael and Carson Maddison; Victor's soulsearching original monster, Deucalion; and a host of local yokels who provide both sympathy and comic relief. That the "good guys" are instantly recognizable by their abundant compassion, generosity, and sense of humor and the "bad guys" by their fussbudget fastidiousness and dedication to efficient extermination of inferior humans helps lay the foundation for the humanitarian homilies that punctuate the narrative.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Series: Frankenstein (Book 4)
  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Bantam; Reprint edition (January 25, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0553593676
  • ISBN-13: 978-0553593679
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1 x 7.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (358 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #36,101 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Richard Madigan on July 7, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Instead of book four "Frankenstein: Lost Souls: A Novel" a better title would have been - book three and a half "Frankenstein: Dead and Alive: The Lost Chapters"

I really wanted to like this book but found it a complete disappointment. I enjoyed the series up until this point, with the fisrt book really being my favorite. It seems that this series has gone from a fun to read, stand alone novel (book one), to a pretty good, enjoyable on its own sequel (book two) to a somewhat disappointing less original follow up (book 3), to the latest installment which is really nothing more than the ending that should have been added to book 3. Rather than rehash all the shortcomings concerning dialog, character development, and plotting that have already been described by previous reviewers (which I totally agree with) I would simply add that prospective purchasers not bother with this unless they have read the previous books, and readers of the previous books not buy it if they simply want to find out what happens after book three. I can answer that in 2 words. "Not Much."

If this is any indication, book five (Coming in spring 2011!) will be about three thousand words describing how Victor Frankenstein's clone and the nano-monsters are defeated, but not before the super duper secret clone of the clone (Victor Frankenstein ver. 3.0) escapes to his island hideaway, or lair in the Alps to begin plotting mankinds destruction all over again. Perhaps the title of that book should read - "Frankenstein: Here We Go Again, Again..."
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Format: Kindle Edition
I have been a Koontz fan for many, many years. This is the first time I was actually angry with an author.

Why? This is only half of a book. Literally. The whole story in this new book is just a rehash of the previous books. Sure, there are some new ideas added. But, it isn't until the end that he finally gets around to starting the new story arc and suddenly... Buy book 2 in 2011!

This was a terrible disappointment. If this is the new Koontz, he needs to just start writing dog stories 100% of the time.

As for me, I will absolutely not be buying book 2 or 3 when they come out. In fact, Koontz, you owe me a refund.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
As I'm writing this, I'm grinding my teeth for having wasted money on the hardcover addition. The book borrows heavily from previous Koontz novels (remember Phantoms?), including the other three Frankenstein novels, a couple of movies, and of course the Bible.

The novel's problem isn't that it lacks action. The problem is that it gives you no reason to care that there is any action. The characters are so paper-thin and the dialogue so frustratingly sub-par, I wanted to skip whole pages until the dialogue ended. And the aforementioned action occurred in the last 25 pages. The book's chapters are 2 or 3 pages long, most paragraphs only 2-3 sentences, and there is a dearth of descriptive narrative.

What's new? A unoriginal 'creature' is introduced, a creation of the Victor-clone (which if you haven't figured out that Victor is a clone in the first 20 pages, then shame on you). This new creature is called a Builder. The Builder is composed of nanoanimals (a.k.a. nanobots, tiny autonomous machines). The Builders are super-strong, can change their shapes and attack flesh and blood and anything inorganic, repair themselves, create more nanoanimals, or transform themselves to look like playmates and/or playgirls. In other words, very hot men and women.

If this sounds just like the nanoanimals in the remake of The Day the Earth Stood Still (Two-Disc Widescreen Edition), whereby Gort transforms from a solid object to a whirlwind of nanoanimals, it's because they literally are. Whether or not Koontz saw the movie, the Builders are mini-Gorts.
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Format: Paperback
I'm seriously wondering if I read the same book as some of the other reviewers, as I LOVED it and am currently RE-reading it; yes, I DID say I'm reading it again. I only paid $7 for it, but think I would still be content had I paid $20 or more. I only wish I could give it TEN stars, because I most certainly would...

I was so glad for the return of some of the characters we grew to know and love in the first trilogy and am thrilled at the new characters, especially Mr. Lyss! While I wasn't wild about this new Victor, I am glad he's not exactly the same; he needed to be a different version than the previous one! I also love the banter between Carson and Michael and don't find it unrealistic at all, as that's how my husband and I communicate and yes, we do talk about the oddest things at the oddest times (conversations about types of pacifiers in church, for example). Who the heck wants a staid and boring marriage? The other reviewers, I'm guessing.

I won't go into much detail about the actual story - yes, there IS one, you just have to be smart enough to look for it - but it's a great beginning to another trilogy and if you can have a little patience, I feel you will be rewarded when the rest of the series is released. I just went and re-read the last Chapter and I don't get what was so "abrupt" about the ending. Since it's the first in a SERIES, I wasn't expecting the strings to be tied and was therefore content with the cliff-hanger, as it were. Perhaps this world has gotten to be too rush rush rush, gimme gimme gimme, I want it NOW, so very few people know how to savor a good, lengthy ride (bet none of the other reviewers watch soaps, either)! I, for one, don't want things to be over so fast and if it was pushed to seven books, I'd be content!

In short, don't put too much weight on these reviews - good OR bad - just read it for yourself, with an OPEN mind, and see for yourself. I don't think you'll regret it.
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