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Your heart belongs to me
Publication Information:
New York : Bantam Books, 2008.
Physical Description:
337 p. ; 25 cm.
For thirty-four-year-old Ryan Perry, life is good a year after the heart transplant that had saved him from certain death, until he begins to receive strange messages united by the theme, "Your heart belongs to me, " and discovers that he is being stalked by a mysterious woman who bears a striking resemblance to the donor of his heart.


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From the #1 New York Times bestselling master of suspense comes a riveting thriller that probes the deepest terrors of the human psyche--and the ineffable mystery of what truly makes us who we are. Here a brilliant young man finds himself fighting for his very existence in a battle that starts with the most frightening words of all…

At thirty-four, Internet entrepreneur Ryan Perry seemed to have the world in his pocket--until the first troubling symptoms appeared out of nowhere. Within days, he's diagnosed with incurable cardiomyopathy and finds himself on the waiting list for a heart transplant; it's his only hope, and it's dwindling fast. Ryan is about to lose it all…his health, his girlfriend Samantha, and his life.

One year later, Ryan has never felt better. Business is good and he hopes to renew his relationship with Samantha. Then the unmarked gifts begin to appear--a box of Valentine candy hearts, a heart pendant. Most disturbing of all, a graphic heart surgery video and the chilling message: Your heart belongs to me.

In a heartbeat, the medical miracle that gave Ryan a second chance at life is about to become a curse worse than death. For Ryan is being stalked by a mysterious woman who feels entitled to everything he has. She's the spitting image of the twenty-six-year-old donor of the heart beating steadily in Ryan's own chest.

And she's come to take it back.

Author Notes

Dean Koontz was born on July 9, 1945 in Everett, Pennsylvania. He received a degree in education from Shippensburg State College in 1967. A former high school English teacher as well as a teacher-counselor with the Appalachian Poverty Program, he began writing as a child to escape an ugly home life caused by his alcoholic father. A prolific writer at a young age, he had sold a dozen novels by the age of 25. Early in his career, he wrote under numerous pen names including David Axton, Brian Coffey, K. R. Dwyer, Leigh Nichols, Richard Paige, and Owen West. He is best known for the books written under his own name, many of which are bestsellers, including Midnight, Cold Fire, The Bad Place, Hideaway, The Husband, Odd Hours, 77 Shadow Street, Innocence, The City, Saint Odd, and The Silent Corner.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 3

Publisher's Weekly Review

After the sophistication and ingenuity of such recent Hitchcockian thrillers as The Husband and The Good Guy, bestseller Koontz stumbles inÅthis pallid effort. Ryan Kelly, a 34-year-oldÅInternet entrepreneur, has it all, including an attractive journalist girlfriend he wants to marry, Samantha Reach, and a house in a gated community in Newport Coast, Calif. Harsh reality intrudes when he learns he has a serious heart defect and must get a transplant. Fortunately, a compatible donor turns up in time, but then someone launches a reign of psychological terror that leaves Ryan suspicious of Samantha and his longtime servants. The ultimate plot payoff is unworthy of this gifted author, as are patches of ponderous prose ("With the moon still tethered to the eastern horizon but straining higher, with the giant pepper tree occluding most of the eternally receding stars, the time to talk of death had come"). Koontz fans can only hope for a return to form next time. (Nov. 25) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Booklist Review

Self-made dot-com multimillionaire Ryan Perry is a handsome, superbly fit, still-surfing 34. Sudden serious chest pain leads to the diagnosis of an enlarged heart, for which transplantation is the only possible life-sustaining fix. Ryan lets the paranoia he could profitably control while making his fortune run away with him both before and after the successful operation. He can't substantiate his fears beforehand, but a year of new-hearted life later, they physically assault him in the form of a beautiful Chinese woman who says he has her heart. Koontz doesn't start his new thriller auspiciously, bathing his unsympathetic protagonist in tinny metaphors and bland scene-painting. For the first several pages and at times later, you want to toss the book aside because it so resembles ad copy. Mercifully soon it dawns that Ryan is a Hitchcockian antihero, like, say, Roger O. Thornhill (Cary Grant) in North by Northwest. You identify with him despite his shallowness and self-absorption, at first because he's in life-threatening trouble but ultimately because his subsequent ordeal rouses an underlying decency in him that only Samantha, his lover at the book's opening (but not ending), sees from the start, and that he must very nearly die, though not from a bad heart, to bring out in himself. This isn't among the most congenial of Koontz's moral thrillers, but it is definitely one of the most thoughtfully developed.--Olson, Ray Copyright 2008 Booklist

Library Journal Review

The shadowy woman stalking heart transplant survivor Ryan Perry has one demand--she wants her heart back. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.



Chapter One Ryan Perry did not know that something in him was broken. At thirty-four, he appeared to be more physically fit than he had been at twenty-four. His home gym was well equipped. A personal trainer came to his house three times a week. On that Wednesday morning in September, in his bedroom, when he drew open the draperies and saw blue sky as polished as a plate, and the sea blue with the celestial reflection, he wanted surf and sand more than he wanted breakfast. He went on-line, consulted a surfcast site, and called Samantha. She must have glanced at the caller-ID readout, because she said, "Good morning, Winky." She occasionally called him Winky because on the afternoon that she met him, thirteen months previously, he had been afflicted with a stubborn case of myokymia, uncontrollable twitching of an eyelid. Sometimes, when Ryan became so obsessed with writing software that he went thirty-six hours without sleep, a sudden-onset tic in his right eye forced him to leave the keyboard and made him appear to be blinking out a frantic distress signal in Morse code. In that myokymic moment, Samantha had come to his office to interview him for an article that she had been writing for Vanity Fair. For a moment, she had thought he was flirting with her-and flirting clumsily. During that first meeting, Ryan wanted to ask for a date, but he perceived in her a seriousness of purpose that would cause her to reject him as long as she was writing about him. He called her only after he knew that she had delivered the article. "When Vanity Fair appears, what if I've savaged you?" she had asked. "You haven't." "How do you know?" "I don't deserve to be savaged, and you're a fair person." "You don't know me well enough to be sure of that." "From your interviewing style," he said, "I know you're smart, clear-thinking, free of political dogma, and without envy. If I'm not safe with you, then I'm safe nowhere except alone in a room." He had not sought to flatter her. He merely spoke his mind. Having an ear for deception, Samantha recognized his sincerity. Of the qualities that draw a bright woman to a man, truthfulness is equaled only by kindness, courage, and a sense of humor. She had accepted his invitation to dinner, and the months since then had been the happiest of his life. Now, on this Wednesday morning, he said, "Pumping six-footers, glassy and epic, sunshine that feels its way deep into your bones." "I've got a deadline to meet." "You're too young for all this talk about death." "Are you riding another train of manic insomnia?" "Slept like a baby. And I don't mean in a wet diaper." "When you're sleep-deprived, you're treacherous on a board." "I may be radical, but never treacherous." "Totally insane, like with the shark." "That again. That was nothing." "Just a great white." "Well, the bastard bit a huge chunk out of my board." "And-what?-you were determined to get it back?" "I wiped out," Ryan said, "I'm under the wave, in the murk, grabbin' for air, my hand closes around what I think is the skeg." The skeg, a fixed fin on the bottom of a surfboard, holds the stern of the board in the wave and allows the rider to steer. What Ryan actually grabbed was the shark's dorsal fin. Samantha said, "What kind of kamikaze rides a shark?" "I wasn't riding. I was taken for a ride." "He surfaced, Excerpted from Your Heart Belongs to Me by Dean Koontz All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

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