One Door away from Heaven
by Dean Koontz

A 600-page horror novel told by God that interweaves 4 separate stories (1) a 10-year-old boy being chased by murderers, (2) a private investigator who works to support his incapacitated sister, (3) a slut just released from prison who is living with her crazy aunt, and (4) a brilliant 9-year-old girl with a malformed hand and hip who lives with her utilitarian philosopher, serial-killer, step-father who intends to murder her and her self-absorbed, drug-crazed, New Age mother. Stories 3 and 4 merge early in the book when the girl meets her next-door neighbors in their trailer part. Story 2 merges with 3 and 4 about 450 pages into the book, and story 1 merges with the others around page 500.

The title refers to a riddle told by the aunt from story 3. The answer is poetic nonsense that escapes me. Lots of murder, funny dialog, and surprises. It all amounts to a serious attack on utilitarianism and moral relativism and a defense of righteousness, life, and free will. Well done and a lot of fun.

Year Read: 2005


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