Dragon Tears

(Critical Survey of Contemporary Fiction)

Dean Koontz has had a string of best-selling horror novels. While DRAGON TEARS may fall short of some of his previous terrifying creations, it still is packed with enough suspense to satisfy Koontz’s loyal audience. Detective Lyon and his partner, Connie Gulliver, work in the Southern California community of Laguna Niguel. Lyon is presented as someone who believes in order. In a world that he sees as tilting toward chaos, he proudly and defiantly seeks perfection in everything that he touches. His partner is a professional who believes in doing her job to the best of her ability, but she also recognizes that perfection is unattainable in her own life and in the world at large. In DRAGONTEARS, these two 1990’s police detectives come face-to-face with a vicious and gifted villain who has the power of appearing in various forms, and can also make time stand still. This monster is a young man whose real name is Bryan Drackman; because of his ability to control time, he becomes known as Ticktock.

Ticktock has a penchant for extreme violence, and he grants detective Lyon merely hours to live. The relationship between Lyon and his partner becomes the strongest dynamic of DRAGON TEARS as it rushes to its thrilling conclusion. Unfortunately, Koontz never really brings the monster to life. Still, deftly mixing incomments on contemporary popular culture while fleshing out his main characters as they grow closer under the strain of the violence that is seemingly all around them, Koontz shows again why he appeals to such a vast readership.