Night Chills – Dean Koontz

There are some books by Dean Koontz which are well researched and well ahead of their time when published. Even in the Author’s note, there is an entire section dedicated to why “Night Chills” is not just another novel.

Once entertained, however, they will be tempted to dismiss Night Chills as quickly as they might a novel about demonic possession or reincarnation. Although this story is intended primarily to be a “good read,” I cannot stress strongly enough that the basic subject matter is more than merely a fantasy of mine; it is a reality and already a major influence on all our lives.

Based strongly on research regarding Subliminal Messaging and Advertising modes in the 21st century, “Night Chills” takes the premise of a mad scientist developing a drug that can allow people to be hypnotized easily and controlled via very succinct messages.

CDA produces computer programs for universities and government bureaus involved in sociological and psychological studies

Totally agree. They’re not the only ones. The study of how to sell more items to willing and unwilling customers has been the central point of studies ranging from behavioural economics to market research statistics.

Are you familiar with the term ‘subliminal perception’?

This book goes through great lengths to describe what it is, how it’s used and why we, as people, should be worried about the big, bad, greedy corporations who try to dominate our waking days with attempts to part us from our money and our free will.


This drug designed by top scientists and unleashed in a monstrous conspiracy, night chills are seizing the men and women of Black River — driving them to acts of rape and murder. The nightmare is real. And death is the only cure…

The scientist is a real nutter. Plagued with dreams of fame and fortune and a solid hate of his former wife, Miriam, and of his own mother, we have here a guy that has no idea how to be truly normal around people. His dream has been laughed at in the higher educational circles and only the private sector can finance his ambitions.

From the start we have been trying to develop a drug that will ‘prime’ the brain for subception, a drug that will make a man obey without question

He wants to be one of the greatest men alive, much like a most-renowned Austrian:

What did Adolf Hitler know about the psychology of the masses that had helped him to achieve such absolute power?

So he studies sleep patterns, seeing in sleep a possible way in into the subconscious mind, the only place where we let our guard down. He sees REM sleep as important manipulation area and finds a way to show commands and images to test subjects that will associate obedience with sexual pleasure and satisfaction.

All night long,” Salsbury said, “we rise and fall and rise and fall through the stages of sleep. Almost without exception, we descend into sleep in steps and ascend from it in steps as well, spending some time at each level along the way

There are some downsides to his study as the first test subjects die in their sleep after being “conditioned” a day before.

Sudden, powerful fear can kill

In the later stages of the drug though, he finds the middle ground where the suggestion takes place but the subject is left alive, terrorized by vivid nightmares and night chills.

When the experiment is taken to an actual town in America via the contamination of their water supply and massive targeted advertising, the mad man can feel his dream coming to life.

The power. Good God, the power he had over them now, would always have over them, from this day forward! He could come into their homes, into their most sacred and private places, and once inside do whatever he wished with them

616rxOFto0L._SL500_SY344_BO1,204,203,200_.jpgDrunk with it, he goes from house to house and commands the people he meets to perform sexual acts or demeaning acts in front of him.

Whenever he could honestly conclude that the field test was a smashing success, and that no danger of discovery existed, he would screw every one of them that he wanted. The bitches. Animals. Little animals. Dozens of them. All of them

At first he targets women – the ones that remind him of his mother (talk about Oedipus!) but then, when he gets discovered, he goes and controls the chief of police, his son, the entire telephone company and even the local people in a makeshift army.

The good part is that the local hero and his girlfriend are caught in the fire and with the help of her father, who was a shopkeeper and librarian, they manage to find the source of the odd behaviour and trace it back to the scientist.

Total Behavioral Modification through Subliminal Perception.’ ” And the subtitle: “ ‘Mind Control from the Inside Out.’

The book then goes on showing the retaliation of the just, the defeat of evil and the triumph of good vs bad. It puts a great accent on the capacity of techonology to be used for evil as well as for good purposes and draws attention that it’s up to the user on how they approach new tech.

Americans were brought up to respect what was new and progressive—and more often than they wanted to admit, they died for their faith in what was bright and shiny.

The issue with people is usually that Every man’s a potential killer in the right circumstances. Power corrupts and evil grows,

He had decided a long time ago that men who eschewed power were far more dangerous and deadly than those who pursued it, if only because they were so difficult to fathom, so unpredictable.

The only thing that can bring some happiness is the person next to you and your children (if any).

Solid 4/5


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