Science Fiction and Fantasy Association of New Zealand

Innocence Innocence
by Dean Koontz
Harper Collins

Supplied for review by Harper Collins New Zealand

Reviewed By: Jacqui Smith

The tag line reads… "Addison Goodheart is not like other people", and Innocence is not like other books. It started out reminding me of the old Beauty and the Beast TV series, as we learn of Addison Goodheart and his strange lonely life under an unnamed US metropolis (it evokes New York, but having never been there, I cannot be sure). He hides his face because people who see him want to kill him, as they did the man he called father. Then one night in a deserted library, he meets Gwyneth, a girl who is almost as isolated as he is, because she will not allow herself to be touched. She embroils him in her much more complicated life, and he aids her in her attempts to escape from her enemy. Meanwhile, in the larger world, disaster approaches…

The tale is told at least in part in flashbacks, but Koontz is a clever enough writer that this does not annoy me (for once). It’s strangely lyrical, while at times horrific, and in other places deeply philosophical. It certainly made me stop and think. More than once. If somebody asked "What do you fear?" and "What do you hate?" how would you reply? I know that some people will absolutely detest the ending of this book, while others will love it… depending largely on their personal beliefs. Me, I found it a bit insipid, but certainly a different take on a familiar theme. I can’t really say more, because that would definitely spoil it for you. Suffice it to say that the title is what it’s all about… innocence.

SFFANZ is a non-profit organisation and registered charity
designed to bring together fans of the fantastic in New Zealand

Contact us by email at: