Mitch's Reviews > To Reign in Hell

To Reign in Hell by Steven Brust
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Jan 08, 12

bookshelves: fantasy, kill-yourself-first

No stars for this one.

Occasionally I run across a book I dislike so much it goes into the recycled paper bin instead of to a friend or to a secondhand bookstore.

This is odd, because I've really enjoyed several other books by Stephen Brust. Additionally, I loved "Lord of Light" by Roger Zelazny, who wrote an enthusiastic review of this book and whose work it occasionally resembles.

Right in the face of all that, 'To Reign in Hell' was awesomely awful.

So...very...much of it was consumed with characters running around looking for one another. This plot wandering was incredibly boring. It was repeated over and over because Steven wouldn't let his characters make decisions on pressing issues, let alone actually DO anything for at least a hundred horrible pages.

Add to this his deliberate distortion of characters. Once again, we see Satan, Lucifer and Beelzebub painted as heroes, while God (Yahweh) and Jesus (Yeshuah) are evil. Yahweh's character is weak, easily tricked, deceitful, full of pride, hypocritical, and not nearly sorry enough that he 'has to' order others to their deaths.

Look as you will, you won't find a single pure, good character in Steven's Heaven.

Everyone there resemble Greek gods or today's superheroes; each has some limited superpower and human character flaws- in other words, they are just souped up people, wandering around without a great storyline.

This book badly needs a Redeemer.
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Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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Ramie Linkoff You say Yeshuah was painted as "evil". You read wrong. Direct lines from the book.

Yeshuah: "I am Heaven. I am a product of my father, and of all those who gave their love so that I might live. I feel this rage, because what they are trying to do is destructive to all I love-even them."

If this doesn't speak for itself, I cant help you. Let others read and form their own opinions before calling someones work garbage. You don't have the right to judge. I think this is what Yeshuah is saying, everyone is so quick now to act out against one another. That's my opinion.


message 2: by Mitch (new) - added it

Mitch Ramie, your comment may be fair, but it hardly addresses my review. There was a whole lot more I disliked about this book other than the single comment about the Yeshuah character being evil. Did you see instances where, for instance, Yahweh was "weak, easily tricked, deceitful, full of pride, hypocritical, and not nearly sorry enough that he 'has to' order others to their deaths."? I did. Do you disagree that he is like a greek god instead of like the God of the Old and New Testaments? Were there any really good characters in the story?

Did you like the pace of the plot and enjoy so little character decision and action? Those were the main reasons I found this book so awful.

I would like to point out that I am not preventing others from reading the book themselves and forming their own opinions. Clearly you read the book and formed your own opinion and I did not prevent that. Every reader, even me, has the right to both read any book and write down their opinion of it if they choose. It is the responsibility of all readers to decide whether or not they read reviews and agree or disagree.

If you find my reviews objectionable, simply choose not to read them. Trying to censor others because you do not like what they have written is wrong. Criticize if you will, but please do so thoroughly and intelligently.


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