Liz Talbot and her partner, Nate, are hired by one of the wealthiest families in Charleston to search for their missing daughter. It's been a well-pubLiz Talbot and her partner, Nate, are hired by one of the wealthiest families in Charleston to search for their missing daughter. It's been a well-publicized missing persons case, but after a month of searching, the police are out of leads and out of ideas. Colton Heyward is not prepared to give up searching for his daughter, however, so Liz and Nate step in. They unintentionally stir up a skeleton or two in the family closet, and unknown thugs seem to be threatening Liz. On top of it all, the partners' romantic relationship is on the rocks, and Liz's best friend - who died years ago but appears to her now as a guardian spirit - is being less than helpful in sorting out her problems. Will they find Kent Heyward? And where can she be?
This was a pretty standard mystery. The plotting is solid, the characters are OK, the mystery was pretty convoluted but it did keep me guessing. The author does a lot of brand-name dropping - "she pulled her wallet out of her Kate Spade handbag" etc. - which is just a personal pet peeve. Other than that, I had no complaints; it was a pretty fun read....more
*Disclaimer: I was provided a free review copy of this book by the publisher.*
Mona Lisa LaPierre is your typical tortured teenage musician. She's not*Disclaimer: I was provided a free review copy of this book by the publisher.*
Mona Lisa LaPierre is your typical tortured teenage musician. She's not popular at school, her principal seems to have it out for her, and her parents are weird and not engaged in her life. Well, she's mostly typical - she suspects that most of her classmates do not see and hear from the dead. Shortly before graduation, she finds out her parents are shipping her off to her cranky grandfather's cabin in the middle of nowhere, New Hampshire, for the summer while they go off on an academic hunt for bear rituals in Russia. There, she makes some new friends, becomes closer to her grandfather, and weirdly gets caught up in an unsolved murder mystery for a girl who was murdered at her high school decades ago and hundreds of miles away.
There is so much potential in this book...I wanted to like it so much. But ultimately, the structure of the book felt all over the place and the writing needed some revision. (The first half of the book also uses some form of the word "inveigle" on every other page, which was funny at first, and then became increasingly hard to read.) The story, at its heart, is an interesting one. I had no trouble getting through the book. But it wanders all over the place without a consistent path - if I were editing, I would have recommended some serious revisions to make the structure a lot tighter. Ultimately, I was really excited to read this and then kind of disappointed in it. I think with the right editor, the author could write some great books - her creativity is clearly not the problem....more
Viola Turner is old and sick, and now that she's moved in with her oldest son, her house stands empty in what has become a pretty rough neighborhood iViola Turner is old and sick, and now that she's moved in with her oldest son, her house stands empty in what has become a pretty rough neighborhood in Detroit. The money still owed on the mortgage is about 10 times what the house is worth, and her 13 children are trying to decide what to do with this worthless house that they all grew up in. Told primarily from the perspective of Cha-Cha - the oldest son, who is convinced a ghost is trying to kill him - and Lelah - the youngest daughter, who may have just lost her job and has definitely been evicted from her apartment - The Turner House looks at all of the ways a family can fall apart and come together again, can be completely different and yet still be as tight as if they were glued together. It explores the roots of family and how those roots echo through the generations, and it begs the question of if we ever really get old enough to know better.
This is a powerhouse of a debut novel. I am still reeling from the fact that the author - who looks so very young to me in her photos - can have this much insight into the weight of family history and the despair of adulthood. There are not many people nowadays that feel their family roots so strongly, but Flournoy writes as though she does. As a person with heavy roots myself, I understood and responded to that feeling of both solidity, like someone will always have your back, and claustrophobia....more
Marie Laveau is an ER doctor at Charity Hospital in New Orleans, where the city's poor, uninsured, and disenfranchised go for medical treatment. She iMarie Laveau is an ER doctor at Charity Hospital in New Orleans, where the city's poor, uninsured, and disenfranchised go for medical treatment. She is also the great-great-great granddaughter of the infamous Marie Laveau, Voodoo Queen of New Orleans, and she has inherited her ancestor's gift for sight and healing. When a dead body turns up on the docks at the Port of New Orleans, killed in a very unusual and puzzling manner, the NOPD directs a relatively new detective from New Jersey to Dr. Laveau for further information. Between restless ghosts howling for revenge, the detectives skepticism of her voodoo powers, an unknown black spirit roaming the city, and more bodies piling up, Marie must use both her medical and her voodoo skills to find and stop the killer - and to protect herself and those around her.
Apparently, I read these all out of order, but as a first introduction to Dr. Marie Laveau, this book served its purpose fine. A sort of mash-up of detective fiction and supernatural fantasy, this book rang a lot of my bells. Marie Laveau is both strong and emotional; independent and loving; standoffish and sensual; a healer and a fighter. She is kind and gentle, but also hard as steel when she needs to be. And she's not flawless - she has some emotional baggage that she has to work to get past. I don't think I've totally gotten a good feel for her after one book because she's pretty complex. Suffice it to say, I'll be reading more books in the series!...more
A series of short stories all focused on a central cast of characters - people and/or ghosts and/or others bordering on the supernatural, all of themA series of short stories all focused on a central cast of characters - people and/or ghosts and/or others bordering on the supernatural, all of them in New York. Some of them interact with one another; others do not. Most of them are trying to fight evil or misguided supernatural entities. All of them have pretty heavy-handed sarcasm and irreverence while they do it. Think of a great cop story and cross it with a story about ghost hunters, set to a Latin rhythm, and you've nearly got it.
I positively adored this book. It is weird and spooky and funny. There's mystery and intrigue and supernatural beings you never really understand. There's creepy dolls and really creepy child ghosts and freedom fighters and brujas and a floating lady intentionally creating enmity and chaos in her neighborhood. And a mammoth. Can't forget about the mammoth. I believe I've heard that the next book Older had published is a novel about these folks; I am definitely all in for a long story involving them....more
Thea comes to Princeton from Bulgaria, following in her older sister's footsteps. She has only recently learned about the older sister she didn't knowThea comes to Princeton from Bulgaria, following in her older sister's footsteps. She has only recently learned about the older sister she didn't know she had, and she plans to spend some of her time at college finding out what happened to her sister. But then she falls for a mysterious stranger...and accidentally gets involved with his brother...and starts to suspect that maybe some ancient myths are real.
This book had sooooooooo much potential. The exploration of maenads in many cultures, by many names, and the reinterpretation of the Orpheus myth laid over a love triangle, a mysteriously disappeared older sister, and a college setting could have been so good. Unfortunately, the dialogue was repetitive and boring, the actions of an 18 year-old virgin away from her country for the first time were unbelievable and annoying, and the characters were somehow both uninteresting and infuriating. I got through the whole thing, but rolled my eyes so many times is a miracle I didn't lose a contact....more
When the Antichrist is born, it is the duty of an Earth-bound demon and an order of Satanic nuns to ensure that he is raised in a proper setting...onlWhen the Antichrist is born, it is the duty of an Earth-bound demon and an order of Satanic nuns to ensure that he is raised in a proper setting...only they kind of screw up his placement without realizing it, and the Antichrist just grows up a normal kid with loving parents and a gang of mischievous friends in the English countryside. The demon happens to be friends with an angel, neither of whom wants their time on Earth to end, so they scheme to try and stop Armageddon, while a witch with a particularly prescient ancestor also tries to interfere, and the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse bear down on earth...can anything really stop Armageddon?
Good Omens explores its story with a wicked sense of humor and a celebration of humanity. I read this book about 10 years ago and remembered liking it, so when it happened to by a pick for my book club AND a group read for the Seasonal Reading Challenge at the same time, I didn't hesitate to re-read it. Apparently, a lot of Pratchett and/or Gaiman fans were somewhat underwhelmed by this collaboration, but I greatly enjoyed it again. It is not either author's finest work, but I found it witty and fun both times I read it....more
A worldwide flu pandemic basically destroys everything in its path, killing an estimated 99% of the people on Earth. Those who remain do so in a shellA worldwide flu pandemic basically destroys everything in its path, killing an estimated 99% of the people on Earth. Those who remain do so in a shell of the old world, with no infrastructure or governments or borders or laws. In the midst of this lonely, bleak existence, a troupe of traveling musicians and actors has sprung up to bring some joy and entertainment and distraction to the small settlements that have sprung up around where Michigan, Toronto, and Chicago used to be. Kirsten was a child when the collapse happened. 20 years afterward, she has known postapocalyptic life for most of her years, but she's still haunted by the few possessions and memories she retains from before the collapse. Her search for meaning in this "new" world - combined with the fact that a crazed man calling himself "The Prophet" seems to be hunting the symphony - creates a really interesting story with both contemplative philosophy and some creepy thrills.
This book has been highly acclaimed, and with good reason. It is a fascinating (and scary) future to contemplate. The interweaving of all of the characters' lives, and the story half-told through the descriptions of a strange comic book, made it all the more intriguing to me. I'm also always fascinated by people who can think through a disaster on this scale and come to logical conclusions about what the world would be like - since I read it so recently, I imagined that The Dog Stars took place due to this same flu, just about 10 years earlier and in Colorado instead of Michigan. The two could very well occupy the same universe. Both books were great; I liked this one just a hair more. But I think I'm done with pandemic-destroys-the-world narratives for a little while now :)...more
Aaaaand Craig Thompson has bowled me over once again. Habibi is the story of Dodola and Zam, two orphans who find each other in childhood and decide tAaaaand Craig Thompson has bowled me over once again. Habibi is the story of Dodola and Zam, two orphans who find each other in childhood and decide to be each other's family, and whose lives are intertwined into adulthood in a fictional Islamic society. I don't want to give away major plot points, but suffice it to say that this is an absolutely beautifully written and drawn story. It's complex and moves fluidly between religious texts and the books main storyline. It addresses numerous women's issues (childhood marriage to middle-aged men, rape, prostitution, life in a harem, motherhood) as well as some interesting race issues (in this setting, the difference between black and olive skin rather than black and white). Both female and male sexuality are significant factors in the story, as is the interplay between the religious stories from Islam and from Christianity, how they are similar and where they differ. Writing and words and ink and the Arabic language are important motifs, and so is environmentalism and industrial waste. And ultimately, slavery and freedom, compulsion and free choice, are the primary themes of the book. It is a love story, and a story of family, and a story of finding your own path. I just finished it last night and have not remotely had enough time to process it all. I will be thinking about this book for a long, long time to come....more
I loved this book. Not my usual thing - a very quiet, even meditative book. Little plot to speak of, and character development for a scant few charactI loved this book. Not my usual thing - a very quiet, even meditative book. Little plot to speak of, and character development for a scant few characters (but very deep for those that are developed). But the writing is beautiful. Memorably so. I can tell this is a book that will stay with me for a long time. I'll be adding her other two books based around these characters to my to-read list immediately....more
Peter is selected, after a rigorous interview process, to serve in the capacity of Christian minister to a native tribe of intelligent creatures on thPeter is selected, after a rigorous interview process, to serve in the capacity of Christian minister to a native tribe of intelligent creatures on the distant planet of Oasis, on which the international conglomerate USIC has built a base for...some really unclear purpose. He tries to convince them to let him bring his wife Bea as well, but they decline. Since it is only a six-month post, he and Bea agree that while the separation will be difficult, it will be worth it to bring the word of God to this distant planet. After he arrives, he immerses himself in the local culture's settlement as much as possible and seemingly begins to lose track of his previous life on Earth...except for Bea's increasingly urgent and terrifying updates of a world suddenly gone terribly wrong, and her faith in God (and Peter) quickly diminishing.
Words just cannot describe how fascinating and nuanced this story is. It both is and isn't about religion. It both is and isn't about space exploration and extraterrestrial life. It both is and isn't about climate change on Earth and the impending breakdown of polite society. While I will admit, now that I'm thinking back on it, that it seems unlikely that things would fall apart SO very quickly on Earth as they do in the book, it really doesn't seem unlikely while you're reading/listening. The natural disasters and economic collapse Bea reports seem plausible and certainly add to the tension throughout the story.
My single, solitary complaint isn't about the story, but about the audiobook. I listened to it on the Scribd app, and it was just so QUIET. I could not turn the volume up any further than it was, and I could barely hear it. I typically listen to podcasts or audiobooks in the shower, while I'm brushing my teeth, and other times where there is a sort of white noise to contend with, but I couldn't do that with this book. I just couldn't hear it at all in those situations. No idea if that is true of the audiobook universally, or just the files stored at Scribd, but either way, it was bothersome for me....more
A somewhat humorous coming-of-age story...with its heroine dead and in Hell. There are a number of familiar tropes here, but Palahniuk turns most of tA somewhat humorous coming-of-age story...with its heroine dead and in Hell. There are a number of familiar tropes here, but Palahniuk turns most of them on their heads in order to achieve a satirical look at the teenage coming-of-age story and to also poke fun at the neo-hippie do-gooder spiritual celebrity image (think Brangelina). It was an interesting way to tell a story, but it felt too pushy to me - like it was trying too hard to be clever. That could be what the author was going for - he put pretty strict boundaries on his storytelling and structure in order to achieve the satire he was going for - but it didn't work for me consistently. If I were being honest, I probably would have abandoned this after about 50 pages if it hadn't been for my book club. I'm glad I finished it, and I have some small desire to find out what happens next, but I probably don't care enough to pick up the next book in the series....more
So, I am generally a sucker for Southern settings in a book, and this one was set in the mountains of North Carolina, not all that far from where I liSo, I am generally a sucker for Southern settings in a book, and this one was set in the mountains of North Carolina, not all that far from where I live in Virginia. The cover promised magical realism, but you will note that I did not put this on my magical realism shelf, because it is not that. Or not much that - the only instance I would categorize as magical realism in this book is a teeny part in which a chef is known for her dishes causing emotions in those who eat them. The rest of the "magical realism" in the book is either supernatural occurrences or outright fantasy - and I have no issues with either of those things either, but they're not magical realism.
Besides all of that, I just thought the story was mediocre. The writing was mediocre. The plot was mediocre. I read it, it was fine, but if it had been much longer I probably would have abandoned it. I almost abandoned it 50 pages in anyway. For a book that would generally push a lot of my "things I love in stories" buttons, I was pretty underwhelmed by this one....more
Lydia Netzer has once again produced a beautiful, intricate story about unusual people that is unlike anything else I have ever read. I didn't think iLydia Netzer has once again produced a beautiful, intricate story about unusual people that is unlike anything else I have ever read. I didn't think it was possible for me to like a book about love and science and relationships and hallucinations any more than I liked Shine Shine Shine, but I believe I do in fact like How to Tell Toldeo from the Night Sky even better. Just...read it....more
*This is a re-read for me; I read it first when it came out about 2 years ago.*
William Bellman seems to live a charmed life. He is good at everything*This is a re-read for me; I read it first when it came out about 2 years ago.*
William Bellman seems to live a charmed life. He is good at everything he tries his hand at. His uncle finds him a place where he will have a good career making good money; he is lucky in love; he is blessed with many children. If he has a flaw, it is caring too much about his work - but he also loves his family and dotes on them. When tragedy strikes, it shakes him to his core, and after he finally recovers, he throws himself into work more than he ever has before. He imagines he made a deal with a mysterious stranger to open a new business, but now he can't find that stranger anywhere. As he works more and more, he sleeps less and less. He separates from his family. And he becomes desperate for the reappearance of the man he thinks of as his business partner...until one night, Mr. Black does reappear, and Bellman learns things are not at all what he thought they were.
I adore the way Diane Setterfield puts together a story. Laced through with allusions to magic that could also be the machinations of an unhealthy mind; told in parts through the eyes of the rooks that enter the story at every turn; embracing joy and tragedy and madness. On reading this a second time, I liked it even more than I did the first time, when my reading was tainted by wanting it to be like her first book (The Thirteenth Tale). I was able to let go of that this time and appreciate this book for the wonder it is all on its own....more
A heavy-handed parable about the perils of marking time and the mythology of Father Time. Somewhat entertaining, with creativity in the realization ofA heavy-handed parable about the perils of marking time and the mythology of Father Time. Somewhat entertaining, with creativity in the realization of the Father Time mythos. But the way it was told was intentionally very laden with the messages of "don't make time on this earth so important that you neglect your loved ones and living the life you have now in the quest to extend it" as well as "don't discount your own importance and blow a single moment in your entire life out of proportion when you have so many other moments to live." It was a really quick read, thankfully - if it had been long, I would have given it fewer stars....more
I will be always grateful to my friend Carrie for recommending this book to our book club and to the other members of our book club for voting it theI will be always grateful to my friend Carrie for recommending this book to our book club and to the other members of our book club for voting it the selection we discussed in August 2012. I would never have read this book otherwise, and it's one of my favorite books I've read this year.
David Eagleman is a neuroscientist, and he spent 7 years writing this book of 40 very short vignettes (2-4 pages each) in which he imagines different conceptions of God and an afterlife. There's one about how we're really extraordinarily complex beings in charge of programming the universe who get to go on "vacation" as much simpler creatures every now and then - and those vacations are our human lives. There's one about how God closed Hell because she understood there was no all good or all bad in people, so she closed Hell and brought all the souls up to Heaven - and how no one was happy, the "good" or the "bad," because no one felt superior to anyone else. There's one about getting to choose the creature you become in the next life and how that choice can sometimes backfire. There's one about how humans are really extraordinarily complex biological AI for tiny organic life that lives at the Earth's core and how they built us to be their eyes and ears on the surface (and what a disappointment we are in that regard). And on and on and on - 40 different tales exploring our purpose in this life, how we got here and what happens when our lives end. It was wonderful.
I read an interview with him about the book in which he states that he's not a Christian, not an atheist, not an agnostic - he calls himself a possibilian. He notes that any good scientist will believe in what he can prove but will not discount what he cannot prove because it may be proven in the future. And he's fascinated by the large number of people in the world who claim to know exactly what happens to the body and/or soul when a person dies. That's why he wrote the book - to write out as many different possibilities as he could think of (he wrote over 70, but narrowed it down to 40 for publication), to explore why so many people feel so convicted that they DO know what the afterlife is like when he can't conceive of what would be the right answer. It's a fascinating exercise, funny and painful and wistful and frustrating all at once....more
There were times I wasn't really sure of this book, but I ended up really liking it. I became invested in Bit becoming his own person separate from (bThere were times I wasn't really sure of this book, but I ended up really liking it. I became invested in Bit becoming his own person separate from (but inspired by?) Arcadia, and that wasn't really possible until the very end of the book. He's in his 50s at that point, and it was fascinating to me to see that it took that long for him to become his own person, free of the expectations and pressures he felt from his childhood. Which we all have, I suppose - some part of us is always still striving to please our parents and live to the ideals they set for us as children (while they were still trying to please THEIR parents). I thought this book was a lovely exploration of family and community without sugar-coating any of it, and a balanced portrayal of the good and the bad that comes with an insulated tribal lifestyle....more
Well. What to say about A Prayer for Owen Meany? Remarkably, this was my first Irving, and I certainly see why he has so many devoted fans. The book cWell. What to say about A Prayer for Owen Meany? Remarkably, this was my first Irving, and I certainly see why he has so many devoted fans. The book creates one of the most memorable literary characters of contemporary literature. Owen Meany is funny and charming and bizarre and delightful and, ultimately, quite the philosopher and teacher. I've been thinking about one of Owen's critical observations toward the end of the book. He writes in his diary, wondering what is wrong with Americans at the time he was writing (1968, during the height of the Vietnam conflict). Owen says something to the effect of people always being convinced that they are so right, with no room for doubt or attempt to understand anyone else's point of view. I've been thinking about that ever since I read it. It strikes me as a huge problem we still face in this country - it boils down to intolerance, an unwillingness to see things from another point of view. That Owen, he was very wise and observant, if rather eccentric. I know I wish I knew an Owen Meany in my real life.
Admittedly, it took me a really long time to get through the book. I always enjoyed the story, I always wanted to get back to it and find out what happened...but I got tired of reading it periodically and had to put it down for a while. I probably paused to put it down for a few weeks about 3 or 4 times so I could read other books. But I really enjoyed the book, and I'm so glad I read it!...more
The 19th Wife interweaves a story about a cast-off boy trying to exonerate his mother from charges that she killed her husband set in modern-day UtahThe 19th Wife interweaves a story about a cast-off boy trying to exonerate his mother from charges that she killed her husband set in modern-day Utah on a "First" compound (fundamentalist Mormons who practice polygamy) with a fictionalized historical memoir of one of Brigham Young's wives who wrote it after she rejected him and the church and went on a campaign to end polygamy. Both the modern-day mother and the historical wife are 19th wives (sort of), hence the name of the book.
I'm kind of fascinated by any kind of cultish behavior (who isn't?), so the topic of the book appealed to me from the start. It is definitely biased against polygamy, but the author researched the issue thoroughly and I don't think it is necessarily an unfair bias. The fictionalized historical memoir is based on an actual memoir that really was written by one of Brigham Young's wives after she left him. The memoir was the more interesting half of the story to me, though the modern-day story was also very interesting in its own way. The memoir makes the case that polygamy is not only unfair but often outright abusive of women and their children; the modern-day tales shows how that is much, much more true today than it was in the 19th century. This book melds together a murder mystery, a sociological study of a religious group that is tantamount to a cult, and interesting historical fiction. A few parts of it dragged a little bit for me, but overall, I was really fascinated with the book!...more
The second Gillian Flynn book I've read, the second one I've loved. From what I've heard, when I finally get around to reading Gone Girl, she'll be 3The second Gillian Flynn book I've read, the second one I've loved. From what I've heard, when I finally get around to reading Gone Girl, she'll be 3 for 3 with me. Yet again, she's written a horrifying, fascinating story that has stuck with me for months. I find myself thinking about it at random times.
In Dark Places, we follow the story of the lone survivor of a horrible mass killing of her family when she was a child - of which her brother was convicted. She's an adult now and is understandably pretty f*cked up. She's basically nonfunctional in society. And she really, really doesn't like to think about or remember or answer questions about the night her mom and two sisters were brutally murdered. So when she's almost completely out of money and the only way she seems to be able to make more money to live is to start talking to the weird murder enthusiasts who love to research and talk about and collect paraphernalia from serial killers and mass murderers. Which opens a whole awful slew of memories and a desire to unravel the truth of what really happened that night...which almost gets her killed.
Gillian Flynn is a master of most horrible psychological twisty aspects of the human psyche - it's terrifying, really, that she seems to be a relatively normal person herself and yet she can create some of the most wonderfully disturbing fictional characters I've ever read. Looking forward to many more works from her in the future....more
A significant proportion of the world's population just...disappears. Without rhyme or reason, without warning. No bodies to bury, no clear path for tA significant proportion of the world's population just...disappears. Without rhyme or reason, without warning. No bodies to bury, no clear path for the grieving who are left behind. The more religious think of it as the Rapture; scientists try to discover a scientific explanation; others just try to forget it happened; new religions arise as people try to make sense of it. Three years on, we follow the story of the members of one family in particular and others in their periphery in a small New England town. The mother and the brother have both gone off to join different post-Rapture cults; the father has become mayor of the town and is holding things together as best he can; the daughter has gone off the rails with teenage rebellion and it seems the former straight-A student now might not finish her senior year. It's a story of holding on, the best way you know how, and just hoping everything doesn't crash down around your ears.
I enjoyed reading this book, and I looked forward to picking it back up every time I put it down, but it doesn't feel like a book that will stick in my brain and have me thinking back on it years later. It was an enjoyable enough read, but ultimately, it felt like a lot of the issues it could have really dug into given the situation were given a surface treatment. The more in-depth treatment was given over to people's pain and ways of coping with that pain - which sure, fair enough - but that's not a fresh and interesting exploration. Basically, it felt like a lot of other literary novels: something bad happens and relatively wealthy white people are sad/have to cope. It was fine, but I doubt I'll go back to it....more
I really would have given this book 2.5 stars if I could give half stars. There is a kernel of a good book inside. The story is original - a supernatuI really would have given this book 2.5 stars if I could give half stars. There is a kernel of a good book inside. The story is original - a supernatural element that does not involve vampires or werewolves, for a change, plus a reasonably compelling main character. It's a historical romance meets unusual supernatural element, with a touch of eroticism. The story at the heart of the book is okay.
But the book desperately needed editing and restructuring, in my mind. I kept mentally reorganizing it, picking out flaws, removing entire characters who seemed to hold the story back rather than furthering it. When a book has my attention, I don't do that; I look past any flaws and am just eager to read the story. The result, to me, is a book that feels like a draft that still needs revising. For that to be the end result...well, it's mediocre....more
This is the second time I've read LAMB, this time because my book club chose it for our June discussion. I liked it better the second time than I didThis is the second time I've read LAMB, this time because my book club chose it for our June discussion. I liked it better the second time than I did the first time. The book is a light-hearted story about the time of Jesus Christ as told by his best friend, Biff. The story imagines what happened in the life of the Christ during the years the Bible doesn't describe, namely his childhood, teen years, and early adulthood. How did he prepare to be the Messiah? What was he like as a kid and as a teenager? So the story is light in most places, and funny, but it's also genuine and respectful of the beliefs of Christianity. At no point does Moore poke fun at Jesus or that he proclaims he's the Messiah or that he performed miracles, and his sacrifice through crucifixion is the one truly serious part of the book. It's a great work of fiction that I think illuminates the author's vision of Jesus without minimizing the significance and miracle of his life for his followers. It's a delicate line to walk, and I think Moore does it perfectly....more
An excellent story about the joys of being a book lover and the dangers of succumbing entirely to that passion. It simultaneously celebrates how awesoAn excellent story about the joys of being a book lover and the dangers of succumbing entirely to that passion. It simultaneously celebrates how awesome books are, how much joy they bring into a book-lover's life, and warns about what happens when that love goes too far, when love of books comes before all else, including other people, your career, and even yourself. It takes all of 10 minutes to read, it's beautiful to look at, and I can definitely imagine reading this again and again. NOT FOR CHILDREN, though - I feel this needs to be said because it looks very much like a picture book, but the story has some very adult themes and plot points....more