by Dean Koontz
My rating: 5 / 5
Genre: Science fiction thriller
Laura Shane’s life has been marked throughout by lightning events, both figurative and literal. During some of the hard times she’s experienced, a mysterious man has shown up to help her in some way—her guardian angel. As she gets older, though, her guardian slips into myth in her mind. When he appears again, it’s on the worst day of her life, and Laura’s life becomes one of fear and paranoia. Even as she begins to understand the depth to which her guardian has been involved in her life, she wonders if she’ll ever be safe again.
I never cared about Koontz when I was younger, probably thinking he was all horror, and I have never cared for horror. My husband (maybe my boyfriend at the time, I don’t recall…it was around 20 years ago) recommended this book, and I remember being pleasantly surprised. I’ve never read another Koontz since, but that just left this to keep a special place in my heart. I don’t know why it took me so long to read it again, but I’m so glad I did! The suspense is really high at certain points in the book. Laura’s guardian, Stefan, is a sympathetic hero, especially when you learn more about him and where he comes from. And though Laura herself isn’t my favorite main character, I can appreciate the way that the various difficulties in her life shape her into the person she becomes as an adult.
Time travel isn’t exactly original, but not everyone does as good a job as Koontz did here. The things that could and could not be affected, the way there are natural limitations to avoid paradoxes, it all makes sense. And what is done by characters to try to get around that can be a little mind-twisty, but it makes for a great read! I know there were a few points when I wondered if it was really necessary to see so much of Laura’s life that don’t really relate to the grander story. I think it was mostly there to build up our connection with Laura. Whatever the reason, it never made me bored. As a stand-alone sci-fi thriller, Lightning definitely worth reading! I know I’ll re-read it again in the future.
Find out more about Lightning
If you’ve read this book, or read it in the future, feel free to let me know what you think!