Sara's Reviews > Millions

Millions by Frank Cottrell Boyce
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's review
Aug 26, 2008

really liked it
Read in July, 2008

This book is GREAT!!! I was inspired to read it from watching the movie (which the author wrote at the same time as the book). It's a young adult/children's book, so it is an easy and enjoyable read. The hero is a little boy, Damian, with a strong faith portrayed through much innocence, who loves the saints. We get some great glimpses of Catholic theology through him (and some of philosophy, too, for example: "Just to be logical about things: if it's wrong to give money to people, then it must be right to take it off people. If it's right to take it off people, then burglars and bank robbers are good people, which they're not. Therefore, it is not wrong to give money away. You just have to find the right people to give it to."). The book is also loaded with humor (far surpassing that in the movie). Here is a great example of Damian's faith-centered thinking as well as the book's humor:

(to put it in context Damian is trying to find ways to do good with the money he has found and work towards heaven)
"I spotted another rung [to climb to heaven] in the playground, before school had started. When the second whistle went, we all walked quickly to our lines and I was in front of Barry. He leaned into my ear and said, 'Pringles.' I passed them back to him. The girl with the lovely corn rows was next in line. She said, 'Why don't you buy your own Pringles?' 'Don't need to. I eat everyone else's.' Barry popped the lid of mine and winked at me. It was the wink that put the thought in my head. I thought, Hello, is this another rung? And I said, 'Barry, are you poor?' [Damian wanted to give money to poor people, but his money-conscientious brother told him there were no poor people in their new neighborhood because the housing prices kept them out.] Barry's left eyelid had still not come up from its wink. Now it fluttered a bit, then it opened wide, wide, wide, and starred into mine. "What?' 'Are you poor?' He hit me very hard across the face. I remembered to turn the other cheek. He hit me in the stomach. I had to sit on the ground to get my breath back. He put his shoe next to my face and said, 'See that shoe? What does it say on it?' It said, Rockport. 'Would I have Rockports if I was poor?' And then he kicked me and I couldn't breathe for what seemed like a long weekend. Now this might sound like it wasn't that successful, but that depends on how you look at it. It's true I didn't help a poor person, but I did try, so that's got to be worth a rung, and, more importantly, I did suffer persecution, which is just fantastic. I mean, five rungs at least. In fact, as I was lying on the tarmac, I actually did start to feel a bit floaty, like I might rise up into Heaven. Anthony [his brother] said that this was due to a change in air pressure inside my head caused by the loss of blood from my nose."

I also love that every time Damian hears someone swearing (the author never includes it) he simply relates that the person "said something unenlightening."

I was not entirely pleased with the book, however. I think there were a few things that got to me, but the big one was his vision of St. Peter, in which the saint uses a lot of strong language and relates the "true" story of the loaves and fishes- that it was not a true miracle at all, even going so far as to suggest that Jesus was ignoran

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Too Many Thoughts Oh, I was wondering why the movie seemed so closely fitted to the book as movies are often far-fetched from the original plot.

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