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False Memory

Cover of False Memory

False Memory

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BONUS: This edition contains an excerpt from Dean Koontz's Odd Apocalypse.

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

No fan of Dean Koontz or of psychological suspense will want to miss this extraordinary novel of the human mind's capacity to torment--and destroy--itself.

It's a fear more paralyzing than falling. More terrifying than absolute darkness. More horrifying than anything you can imagine. It's the one fear you cannot escape no matter where you run . . . no matter where you hide.

It's the fear of yourself. It's real. It can happen to you. And facing it can be deadly.

False Memory . . . Fear for your mind.

BONUS: This edition contains an excerpt from Dean Koontz's Odd Apocalypse.

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

No fan of Dean Koontz or of psychological suspense will want to miss this extraordinary novel of the human mind's capacity to torment--and destroy--itself.

It's a fear more paralyzing than falling. More terrifying than absolute darkness. More horrifying than anything you can imagine. It's the one fear you cannot escape no matter where you run . . . no matter where you hide.

It's the fear of yourself. It's real. It can happen to you. And facing it can be deadly.

False Memory . . . Fear for your mind.

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Excerpts-
  • Chapter One Thanks, Daddy.

    After convincing her ever hopeful mother that the Rhodes marriage remained happy, Martie slipped into a leather jacket and took her golden retriever, Valet, on his morning walk. Step by step, her headache faded.

    Along the whetstone of clear eastern sky, the sun sharpened scalpels of light. Out of the west, however, a cool onshore breeze pushed malignant masses of dark clouds.

    The dog regarded the heavens with concern, sniffed the air warily, and pricked his pendant ears at the hiss-clatter of palm fronds stirred by the wind. Clearly, Valet knew a storm was coming.

    He was a gentle, playful dog. Loud noises frightened him, however, as though he had been a soldier in a former life and was haunted by memories of battlefields blasted by cannon fire.

    Fortunately for him, rotten weather in southern California was seldom accompanied by thunder. Usually, rain fell unannounced, hissing on the streets, whispering through the foliage, and these were sounds that even Valet found soothing.

    Most mornings, Martie walked the dog for an hour, along the narrow tree-lined streets of Corona Del Mar, but she had a special obligation every Tuesday and Thursday that limited their excursion to fifteen minutes on those days. Valet seemed to have a calendar in his furry head, because on their Tuesday and Thursday expeditions, he never dawdled, finishing his toilet close to home.

    This morning, only one block from their house, on the grassy sward between the sidewalk and the curb, the pooch looked around shyly, discreetly lifted his right leg, and as usual made water as though embarrassed by the lack of privacy.

    Less than a block farther, he was preparing to conclude the second half of his morning business when a passing garbage truck backfired, startling him. He huddled behind a queen palm, peering cautiously around one side of the tree bole and then around the other, convinced that the terrifying vehicle would reappear.

    "No problem," Martie assured him. "The big bad truck is gone. Everything's fine. This is now a safe-to-poop zone."

    Valet was unconvinced. He remained wary.

    Martie was blessed with Smilin' Bob's patience, too, especially when dealing with Valet, whom she loved almost as much as she might have loved a child if she'd had one. He was sweet-tempered and beautiful: light gold, with gold-and-white feathering on his legs, soft snow-white flags on his butt, and a lush tail.

    Of course, when the dog was in a doing-business squat, like now, Martie never looked at him, because he was as self-conscious as a nun in a topless bar. While waiting, she softly sang Jim Croce's "Time in a Bottle," which always relaxed him.

    As she began the second verse, a sudden chill climbed the ladder of her spine, causing her to fall silent. She was not a woman given to premonitions, but as the icy quiver ascended to the back of her neck, she was overcome by a sense of impending danger.

    Turning, she half expected to see an approaching assailant or a hurtling car. Instead, she was alone on this quiet residential street.

    Nothing rushed toward her with lethal purpose. The only moving things were those harried by the wind. Trees and shrubs shivered. A few crisp brown leaves skittered along the pavement. Garlands of tinsel and Christmas lights, from the recent holiday, rustled and rattled under the eaves of a nearby house.

    Still uneasy, but feeling foolish, Martie let out the breath that she'd been holding. When the exhalation whistled between her teeth, she realized that her jaws were clenched.

    She was probably still spooked from the dream that awakened her after midnight, the same one she'd...
About the Author-
  • Dean Koontz, the author of more than seven #1 New York Times bestsellers, lives in southern California.


    From the Hardcover edition.
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    Random House Publishing Group
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  • Copyright Protection (DRM) required by the Publisher may be applied to this title to limit or prohibit printing or copying. File sharing or redistribution is prohibited. Your rights to access this material expire at the end of the lending period. Please see Important Notice about Copyrighted Materials for terms applicable to this content.

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