Katherine Coble's Reviews > Mighty and Strong

Mighty and Strong by Michael  Wallace
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's review
Apr 30, 11

bookshelves: fiction-with-a-not-so-hidden-agenda, bargain-books
Read in April, 2011

I enjoyed the characters in the first book (The Righteous) and so I went directly into this one.

Here is yet another circumstance where I miss "half-stars" on Goodreads, as the first book would to my mind rate 3.5 stars, with this one at 2.5 stars. Yet they both weigh in at 3 on the full-star scale.

Whereas the first book had an underlying sort of kindness and openness about it, this second entry in a projected series of three self-published (*) works is far more cynical and snarky. The first one was a good field trip into a world unfamiliar to most people except in its most cartoonish form. This one reads like a fictionalised version of every anti-mormon, anti-right wing blog out there. Straw man characters are created to allow the author to rail against Republican politicians and Mormon financial practises.

The character of Jacob--refreshingly open-minded and earnest in _The Righteous_--is here portrayed as judgmental, tiresome and yet more of a Mary Sue than you'd expect. Where he ends up by the end of this book is not only a giant leap, it's nearly a blasphemous one for LDS readers. (I am not LDS.)

Since I felt like the book's primary purpose was not to entertain but to sell an agenda I barely enjoyed it at all.

*the books say they are published by "BalSalom publishing" on the Kindle, but after some digging it turns out that Balsalom is just a coy name Michael Wallace has given to his own Self-publishing venture. And these books are decidedly self-published and in grave need of an editor. Some examples: "ATM Machine; PIN Number; Kool-aide."

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