Fear Nothing (novel)
First UK edition
|Series||Moonlight Bay Trilogy|
|Genre||Suspense, Mystery novel|
|Publisher||Cemetery Dance Publications
Dell Books (US)
|ISBN||ISBN 1-881475-27-1 and ISBN 0-553-57975-4|
|Followed by||Seize the Night|
Fear Nothing is a novel released in 1997 by the best-selling author Dean Koontz. The book is the first installment in what is reported to be a three-part series of books, known as the Moonlight Bay Trilogy, featuring Christopher Snow, who suffers from the rare (but real) disease called XP (xeroderma pigmentosum). The second in the trilogy, Seize the Night, was released in 1998. No release date has yet been set for the release of the third book titled Ride the Storm. Fear Nothing is in several ways a successor to 1987 Koontz novel Watchers.
- A slipcased limited edition of 698 signed and numbered copies.
- A traycased lettered edition of 52 signed and lettered copies.
Fear Nothing, told in the first person, follows 24 hours of Christopher Snow's life, as he discovers and attempts to unravel a mysterious and seemingly endless conspiracy centered around a military compound called Fort Wyvern. The book opens with Christopher Snow going to visit his dying father at the hospital. As Snow enters, the lights are thoughtfully dimmed to protect him in his condition. As Christopher’s father is near to death he manages to say a few words, including the title advice “fear nothing”. Shortly after, Christopher's father dies.
Snow discovers before leaving the hospital his father’s body has been switched with that of a drifter. Following the people taking the body to the funeral home, Christopher is nearly found out and a wild manhunt begins. Christopher is chased through to the outskirts of town and only his knowledge of the landscape of night keeps him ahead of his pursuers. When he reaches a dead-end in a deserted hollow, he encounters Mungojerrie, an extremely intelligent and very precocious cat.
Later, upon returning home, Christopher finds his father's gun on his bed, and an urgent message on his answering machine to call Angela Ferryman, a nurse and lifelong family friend. Orson, the family dog, is found busy (uncharacteristically) digging holes in the garden. Christopher stops the pet and brings Orson along with him to see Angela, who reveals some of the town’s deep secrets, including a night several years ago when she encountered a strange rhesus monkey in her house, a terrifying creature which is recovered by mysterious military personnel. Before more is revealed, Angela is killed while in another room, and Chris barely escapes when unknown assailants set the house on fire.
Christopher sets off on his bicycle, with Orson following, to the home of his best friend Bobby Halloway, a surfer who lives in a cottage on the edge of town, near to the sea. Upon hearing Chris’ story, Bobby urges Christopher to leave the mystery alone and continue life as normal. The friends share some food and a few beers (including the dog). Their meal is interrupted by Sasha, Christopher's girlfriend, who calls with a message from another friend of Christopher. The message sends him and Orson off on a race into the mist of the night, where they are followed by a group of mutated Rhesus monkeys which are led by a shadowy figure of a half-man, half-beast.
As Christopher meets with Roosevelt Frost, an ex-football player who now focuses on a talent of communication with animals, Christopher is again warned off his investigation yet feels compelled to unravel this mystery. Frost hints at unusual, uncommonly intelligent animals escaping from the military base. He cryptically mentions that Christopher is protected by the legacy of his mother.
Names in Fear Nothing
Numerous names in Fear Nothing are likely references popular American literary and movie figures.
- Orson - In the words of Chris Snow:
"As a puppy, my dog was given a series of names, but he didn't care to respond to any of them on a regular basis. After noticing how intently the mutt focused on old Orson Welles movies when we ran them on video-and especially on the appearance of Welles himself in any scene-we jokingly renamed him after the actor-director. He has ever since answered to this moniker."
- Lewis Stevenson - Although Lewis is spelled Lewis as opposed to Louis, his name is likely a reference to Robert Louis Stevenson, the literary figure.
- Roosevelt Frost - Although his first name is Roosevelt, as opposed to Robert, Roosevelt shares his last name with the famous poet (Robert Frost) and the same first name initial. Also Roosevelt Frost shares his first name with the last name of famous 32nd U.S. president Franklin D. Roosevelt.
- Father Tom Eliot - This priest's name is a reference to the poet Thomas Stearns Eliot (T. S. Eliot), who is often quoted or mentioned in the works of Koontz.