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(The Book of Thomas #1)

3.59  ·  Rating details ·  66 ratings  ·  18 reviews
"The mind is its own place and in itself, can make a Heaven of Hell, a Hell of Heaven." John Milton, Paradise Lost

In the beginning, the Church ruled all the Spheres of the Apostles. But that was millennia ago, before the origins of this massive, artificial realm were forgotten. Now, drought, plague and war afflict the Spheres that make up the world of Man, fragmenting
Paperback, 300 pages
Published November 15th 2012 by ChiZine Publications (first published January 1st 2012)
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Dec 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone interested
Recommended to Katy by: ChiZine Publications
Shelves: ebook
Book Info: Genre: Dark Speculative Fiction
Reading Level: While the characters are MG to YA, this book is definitely written for adults
Recommended for: Fans of dark speculative fiction, those who like having a riddle to solve, philosophy, comparative religions, etc.
Trigger Warnings: rape (m/m, m/f), pedophilia, violence, bullying, killing

My Thoughts: The last book I read by Robert Boyczuk was one of only three books in my entire life to give me nightmares. So I had high expectations. This book
Dec 04, 2012 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 08, 2012 rated it really liked it
I'm a fan of Bob Boyczuk's other work (Horror Story and Other Horror Stories and Nexus: Ascension) and so was very anxious to dig into his Bildungsroman slash road-novel, The Book of Thomas. Like Nexus, this novel is deliberately-paced sci fi soaked in Boyczuk's trademark uncompromising melancholy. Unlike Nexus, where Boyczuk leaned heavily on the established language of post-Alien/Blade Runner sci fi (to great effect, I might add), "Thomas" contains an entirely unique world at once ancient and ...more
Jul 11, 2013 rated it really liked it
when I first picked up this book and read the back, my thoughts went straight to A Canticle for Leibowitz and Anathem, two books I greatly enjoyed and admired. When I got about 100 pages in, I had to add revise my assumption, and add The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, the Unbeliever to the mix, which I neither admired nor enjoyed. I thought long about whether I should continue this Thomas, but I was actually already invested and intrigued, so I decided to carry on. The big mystery has not been ...more
Sep 09, 2013 rated it really liked it
I really liked this one. It was well-written, great plot (part 1 of a trilogy and I can't find out when the next one is out), characters - Thomas, Kite and Ali are dark and mysterious but in a good way. I loved the world-building with an artificial world with Dyson-like spheres with the outermost being Heaven and inhabited by winged angels and the innermost being Hell, and several earthly spheres in between, controlled by the Catholic church. Great use of language with just enough description to ...more
Nov 26, 2014 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: chizine_own
This is copy 32 of 150 signed numbered copies.
Tobreth Hansen
Apr 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
Very interesting if cynical world. And yet for all that cynicism, angels and God are real and He uses His blood to protect us.
Feb 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Fantastic world-building (literally!). Author's style reminds me so much of Gene Wolfe. Pure genius.
Mar 30, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'd like to see a third book on Thomas / David.
Jonathan Crowe
Dec 11, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
The Book of Thomas: Volume One: Heaven by Robert Boyczuk is set in a medieval world ruled by the Catholic Church from Rome, but that world is not ours: its a built world of concentric spheres, with heaven the outermost sphere and hell the innermost, and Rome is in the sphere just below Lower Heaven, where the angels live. Its inhabitants accept this state of things as much as medieval scholars in our world accepted the pre-Copernican view of the universe.

The Book of Thomas kind of reads like a
John Hanscom
Feb 27, 2013 rated it it was ok
Disappointing. It is the first of a trilogy, and I will not read the others. Though full of religious themes, it is all Roman Catholic, and the author cannot decide whether he is for or against it. This leaves the book lukewarm, tepid. In addition, ever since Canticle For Leibowitz, it seems half the "science fiction" books dealing with these feel necessary to go medieval. It is tiring. Finally, I guess [SPOILER ALERT] I am supposed to feel interest in or sorry for a person whose first real and ...more
Aug 11, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A purposefully problematic book in some ways; but, deeply engaging, dark, and strange. The images and subtext worked well for me as a now atheist veteran of Catholic schools.

I had nearly forgotten it was the first of two, and when I reached the end I nearly yelled in outrage that I had to wait for the next one to be written. (Disclaimer: I work for the publisher of this novel.)
Meagan Hansen
One of my wins from Goodreads/firstreads

I ended up having a hard time following the story and keeping up. It was very slow for me and just couldn't hold my attention. I just don't think it was the book for me. I'm going to pass it on to my friends and see if it's more their taste.
Paddy Kelly
Mar 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This book is excellent. Crisp writing, driven characters, a great world and a large serving of twisted Catholic mythology. Seriously, if you like SF or just aren't an idiot, read this. The best book I've read in years.
Jan 26, 2013 marked it as to-read
Shelves: abandoned-hope
It was on an e-reader during said gadget's untimely demise. Intriguing and worth completion when I get another copy.
Jan 29, 2013 rated it liked it
It started off really great, but once it got to the angels and their secret mission it just became dumb. Disappointed in the direction it took.
Aug 26, 2013 rated it did not like it
Rape apologist garbage.
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Oct 22, 2014
Rob Liebscher
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Apr 14, 2016
Alexandria Torres
rated it it was ok
Oct 19, 2016
T. Blake
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Jul 09, 2014
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Jun 16, 2013
Nicola Campbell
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Mar 15, 2020
David Hoff
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Mar 20, 2016
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Feb 17, 2014
William Gillespie
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Feb 08, 2018
Matt Moore
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Oct 23, 2012
rated it it was amazing
Mar 25, 2019
Arthur Timpanaro
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Mar 13, 2013
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Nov 11, 2013
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The Book of Thomas, Volume 1: Heaven
Forthcoming, Nov, 2012

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Robert Boyczuk is a supremely talented short-story writer.
Cory Doctorow on BoingBoing

"Boyczuk's memorable debut offers 19 horror stories that accentuate the emotional-and often horrid - upheavals men and women suffer from while searching for love....Boyczuk's stories are uniformly excellent...."

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