Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Review: "Koko" by Peter Straub


It is cool that while I was reading Koko by Peter Straub, I was in Bangor, Maine, where I took a tour of the places that inspired some of the events in Stephen King’s novel. What isn’t cool is how boring the book was. I recall liking the first Peter Straub book I read, A Dark Matter, although in retrospect, I don’t think the book has aged well in my mind as a reader. But this book, I have no question about my feelings towards it. It would be good if it wasn’t over 500 pages long, not great or anything, but it would be over quicker and I wouldn’t have to spend so much time with it. And I want to like Peter Straub, the same way I want to like Ramsey Campbell and Daniel Woodrell. But while I will read whatever those authors publish, I will always approach it with trepidation. This novel focuses on a group of Vietnam veterans, years after the war, which must band together to stop a series of murders committed by the titular character, whom they think is writer Tim Underhill, since a lot of the murders have details that would be found in one of his horror novels. This leads them on trail that goes from the Far East in Thailand to the grimy streets of New York, looking for a killer who seems to have never left the jungles of Vietnam. A big problem I had with this book is the characters are never fleshed out well enough for me to care when they are in danger. They have sex and curse, but the seem interchangeable, with differences between them never being clear, even with a big death in the middle of the book. I’m curious about the other two books in The Blue Rose Trilogy, but this is not a good start.

Rating: 2/5

No comments:

Post a Comment