In the spirit of The Good Place, Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure, and The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, author Russ Colchamiro has gone back to the future to deliver his wildest, funniest novel yet--the new and updated Sci-Fi/Fantasy tale Finders Keepers: The Definitive Edition.
When a jar containing the Universe's DNA falls from Eternity, bumbling backpackers Jason and Theo find their loyalties--and sanity!--put to the test. Unaware that a motley crew from another realm is chasing them across the globe to retrieve that radioactive vessel, these intrepid new friends are forced to contend with passion, responsibility, and their own mortality--and the fate of the Solar System, which hangs in the balance.
Traversing Europe, New Zealand, and the backbone of Eternity, Finders Keepers: The Definitive Edition ultimately asks one simple question: Is the life you're living the life you actually want . . . or does the Universe have more to offer than you can possibly imagine?
IMPORTANT NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: The Definitive Edition of Finders Keepers has undergone significant changes from the original version. Consider the original as the Raw & Uncensored version (rated 'R')--which is no longer available-- while this new updated and revised Definitive Edition is 'PG-13'.
Goodreads will not allow the two version to be listed separately, so please keep in mind that older reviews do not necessarily reflect the updated narrative, characters, language, and tone of the Definitive Edition.
For more on why I wrote the Definitive Edition, and how it differs from the original, check out my blog here: https://russcolchamiro.com/2018/11/bo...
RUSS COLCHAMIRO is the author of Crackle and Fire, Fractured Lives, Hot Ash, and Blunt Force Rising, the first four books in the sci-fi mystery series featuring his hardboiled intergalactic private detective Angela Hardwicke. He is also the author of the rollicking space adventure, Crossline, the zany sci-fi backpacking series Finders Keepers, Genius de Milo, and Astropalooza, editor of the sci-fi mystery anthology, Love, Murder & Mayhem, and contributing author for his newest project, Murder in Montague Falls, a noir novella collection, all with Crazy 8 Press.
Russ has contributed to several other anthologies including Tales of the Crimson Keep, Pangaea, They Keep Killing Glenn, Altered States of the Union, Thrilling Adventure Yarns, Brave New Girls vols. 3&4, Camelot 13, TV Gods 2, and Footprints in the Stars.
He is now writing the third book in the Angela Hardwicke series.
In addition, Russ hosts the Rockin' Rollercoaster podcast, where he interviews various Sci-Fi, mystery, crime, and horror authors.
Russ lives in New Jersey with his wife and their twin ninjas.
For more on Russ’s works, visit www.russcolchamiro.com, and follow him on Facebook, Twitter, Blue Sky, YouTube and Instagram @AuthorDudeRuss.
Finders Keepers is my first sci fi book in ages. What stands out is its execution - this was funny, light but clever. This makes you question the Big Bang, the dinosaurs and the Ice Age. You will be grinning through most of this.
It's a collection of odd characters with their personal agendas and end of the world hanging in the balance. From an unadventurous bacpacker to someone who hates conversation, you are entertained and engaged by everyone. There's a talking dolphin and whale as well.
The sci fi aspect is easy to understand which makes it a quick read.
You also touch upon plans, panic, paranoia and the strange relationships among these characters. The multiple povs are written well with distinct voices. My favorite has to be Jason.
This series reminds me of Adrian Mole and Good Omens. If you enjoyed these two, give this series a try.
Finders Keepers is the book one of this trilogy. What if the Gods also have systems like humans? This book is a sci-fi and has this interesting premise.
In some far off galaxy Eternitarians live who have the job of populating planets. They build eath like stystems on new planets. The story starts with an eternitarian couple Donald and Danielle. They are work crew and given a single jar of cosmic building matrial or CBM, which is universe DNA. A single drop can wipe out several star systems. They lose it and it falls on earth. It is reterievd by two tourists. They come to earth to reterieve it and then what happens makes the whole story.
To give you an idea of the premise this passage is reproduced:
Eternitarians impudently denied even the slightest similarity between themselves and the Earth cretins, physical appearance being the only exception. The people trudging along the Earth were said to evolve painfully slow and possess only the most petty and selfish instincts. Worst of all, they seemed insistent not only to repeat their mistakes no matter how many generations were afforded the opportunity to make adjustments, but also to increase the depth and breadth of the blunders.
Conventional wisdom held that littering the metaphysical Universe with humans, or pseudo-Eternitarians, or pseudo-Es, or PEs—considered the origin of the word peon—would be a colossal waste of time. Along the cosmic scale, PEs were considered by Eternitarians to be a slug-like, unorganized bunch, and not expected to last.
As this is part one the story is building. Many characters are introduced and their back stories are given. The book is very hilarious and fast moving.
But sometimes it is difficult to keep track of many characters in varied geographical and sometime many galaxies locations.
Recommendation and rating
It will appeal to those who like sci-fi and comedy. I give it 3/ 5 stars.
A 3.5. Enjoyable read in the spirit of Robert Rankin, and better than I expected, going by the cover (I know, don't judge a book...).
A satisfying mix of sci-fi, humour, romance and action, with a healthy dollop of backpacker existentialism thrown in.
I found it slightly hard going in places as there were lots of characters and a fair amount of jumping back and forth in space and time, but most characters were well-developed and loose ends were tied up satisfactorily at the end. Colchamiro writes pretty well and knows how to tell a story, and I think this novel might have been even better if he'd kept things simple and perhaps dropped some of the characters and subplots. Interested to see where the series goes next, though!
I was one of the lucky winners to win a signed copy of this book on Goodreads First Reads program. This humorous science fiction book centers around an important jar containing CBM (Cosmic Building Materials)that accidently gets knocked down to Earth from Eternity by newlyweds Donald and Danielle. The important jar is subsequently picked up on Earth and now in the possession of characters Jason and Theo, while others race to find it. I highly recommend reading "Finders Keepers"- this book is well-written and one of the most unique stories I have ever read.
This book is definitely influenced by the tradition of Douglas Adams, but falls far short in execution. I found the characterizations and interactions to be misogynistic and racist -- with no political commentary to make these choices even marginally understandable. And, I definitely wouldn't recommend this book to fans of Douglas Adams or Christopher Moore -- there's no intelligent satire here, just copy and paste approach to their stylistic techniques.
Finders Keepers is a humorous science fiction about god and backpacking in Europe. Not so much about god as about the people he has working for him creating the universe. Donald and Danielle steal some time from making the Milky Way to make love on the newly created earth. Unfortunately they lose a jar of cosmic building material too.
This Jar is the focal point for the two storylines that follow. One continues with Eternity and the stressful and oh so human lives people lives there with their cocktail parties and work issues. The other follows a cast of humans and downcast Eternians on Earth and how their travels interweave each other’s as an unsuspecting New Zealander finds the Jar.
The Young American, Jason Medley takes to backpacking in Europe. That part felt genuinely self experienced to the point that some parts got a bit wordy. Jason meets Theo from New Zealand and they have a sort of bromance while traveling around Europe. Yes that is the New Zealander who found the Jar.
There is a bit of love here and there which helps the story.
It is a well crafted story and the weave created by the people trying to get the Jar or finding out about it is clever and I enjoyed it most of the time.
I have a hard time beside the wordy bit in the travelogue to say anything bad about this book.
Finders Keepers serves as a fun pastime and I wouldn’t mind reading more by the author.
This is a nice genre-bender of a novel. Part sci-fi, part buddy travelogue, part comedy, part (a small one) philosophy. There were a great many interconnected characters, and their different threads are picked up and dropped over and over via lots and lots of short chapters -- perhaps too many, and some of which I cared a lot more about than others.
The core of the story, and arguably its most effective part, is the bromance between twentysomethings Jason and Theo as they traipse around Europe. One really feels the importance of their friendship, and roots for them. It makes for an interesting juxtaposition with, say, Emma's hubristic backstory in "Eternity", the realm where earth and indeed the entire universe were originally "designed" by a people far too like us modern humans for comfort. The "Eternity" storyline was also fun, though it would have been nice to see a little worldbuilding rather than just making the whole place seem like something ripped straight out of a Paul Verhoeven movie: something by more or less equal turns funny, smart, interesting, boring, and offensive.
The main issue I had with this book is that it's the kind wherein men are people, and women are women. This is, though I'm normally loathe to pigeonhole in this way, a Men's Book. Even during the parts with the female POVs (which I do give the author points for trying). It's generally well-written, though, and I'd be curious to see what the author comes up with next.
Finders Keepers In the spirit of Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy 'Finders Keepers' is a raunchy rollicking adventure spanning all of 'Eternity' -- and earth! The story is absurdist fun yet oddly compelling. Wildly humorous yet with a healthy dose of strange drama, so much so that it was actually difficult to put down. I wanted to see where the weird and wonderfully drawn characters ended up or did next...
I can understand why the author has difficulty classifying his works because despite trying to be a Gen Xer's wet dream the book mixes in some amazing insightfulness, not to mention a descriptive skill that places the reader directly into the action. It reads like the author visited all the places he writes about (the ones on earth at least) and made me wish I had gone on a backpacking tour of Europe when I was in my twenties.
And then randomly the reader comes across little sprinkles of philosophy here and there which may, as they did me, stick with you for a long, long time. To paraphrase two of my favorites: if you mess up, then mess up even more hugely. Break one glass and the owner may be heartbroken. So break four more to distract his attention from you. It's so stupid it actually has the ring of truth. And: 'You know how much time you've used but not how much you have left'. Brilliant!
Finders Keepers follows the adventures of Jason Medley and Theo Barnes, two hapless, bumbling backpackers who really shouldn't be trusted with anything important. So of course they stumble into a plot including a jar of the Universe's DNA, a plot that could change the fate of the entire galaxy. This fun, chaotic novel captures that madcap spirit of dudely comedies like Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure and the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. Not saying that only dudes can enjoy it (I, for one, happen to be a very loudmouthed girl-power lady, and I liked it plenty!). I could totally see this being a movie... something with the stylized irreverence of Guardians of the Galaxy. Hell, give it its own cinematic universe... Between this book and its sequels, the Finders Keepers trilogy has more than enough awesome material for one. Or a Netflix series so I could binge-watch it all at once... yeah, that would be awesome.
Anyway, this was a unique and hilarious read full of unexpected twists and clever writing. Definitely recommend!
I've done a lot of backpacking over the years, so if you're looking for a book that captures what it's really like ... I definitely recommend Russ Colchamiro's Finders Keepers. It's hilarious.
He totally gets all the frantic running around from trains and buses and hostels and all the crazy people you meet and the places you end up that were totally unexpected.
There are also these scenes where you see the fatigue set in, and how paranoid you get thinking that anybody around you could either end up being your best friend ... or somebody who's trying to steal your stash!
And then he mixes in this nutball scifi comedy story right out of Douglas Adams that had me laughing out loud!
I was honestly surprised at how many negative reviews this book had. I actually liked it, though it was a whirlwind of a story and was a challenge to read. But it was a challenge I enjoyed. This is a book that keeps you on your toes, and I found much of the story to be humorous, though a bit crude at times (which didn't bother me in the least). I enjoyed it, but I like this kind of book and this style of writing. I had a hard time following what was going on much of the time since there are multiple characters to follow and different parallel storylines being developed, so found myself going back and rereading parts of it again to see what I missed, but by the end all was explained. I definitely enjoyed it, despite the strange quality and style.
I definitely think the humor is more tongue in cheek than other fantasy books I have read. But I felt it added a different tone and feel to the overall story and gave it a personality of its own, unlike any other book in the genre. The author writes in a free flowing, quick paced manner, with enough attention to detail to pique your interest but not distract you from the story, and tons of creativity. I wasn't distracted by grammatical issues or disjointed thoughts or sentences. The mechanics were executed well and I was able to read freely without critiquing the written words themselves, focusing only on the story.
I found myself very entertained by this story. I laughed a lot and loved the humor. It may not be everyone's cup of tea, but it definitely suits my sense of humor and style, and I coudln't get enough of it. I was disappointed to see the story coming to an end but was excited to see there are other books that follow in the series, which I am eager to read, too.
Definitely something I would recommend if you like fun, entertaining fantasy reads.
First off: Absolutely no "science" in this work of fiction -- more of a buddy story with a fantasy twist. Unfortunately, Mr. Colchamiro has ostensibly never wandered across a continent because anyone that I ever met who has has had far better stories than are related here.
Actually, I didn't really "get" the lost jar of universal goo aspect to the fantasy. The whole subplot came out of nowhere, went nowhere, added nothing and was basically irrelevant to the story. If the search was supposed to add "a big chase" humor along the lines of the movie It's a Mad, Mad, Mad World or Adams' Hitchhiker's Guide … it failed miserably.
In fact, the writer's style obviously attempts to emulate that of Douglas Adams -- except that a lack of set-up turns the scenes that are meant to be humorous to inexplicably bizarre.
Finally, on a personal note, I have made two wanderings across Europe (with a EuroPass and no money), before and after college -- mildly expressed, both were a blast. However, if my first journey were as relatively mundane as what Jason experienced I would never have made the second.
This was a DNF for several reasons. 1. Sexism...woman are described FIRST by their breasts. 2. Black character portrayed as stereotypical ghetto for no reason and even though she has a high position at her job the story focuses more on her ghettoness and...sex. 3. Bunch of sex with no real context. 4. Book Quotes: "The hairs on her neck stood up. Her breast tightened." / "her chestnut eyes still filled out her face, round and cute-sexy"
The book had a really weird pacing with random time skips to the past and to the present. I originally got interested in the book because it said it was like Bill & Ted's adventure (and honestly it sold me) but I feel like the author was trying to hard to be quirky and raunchy. I saw many comments saying they enjoyed the story...so maybe it was just me and my taste of literature and need for women to be treated at people and not sex objects.
This book was given to me by Author Assistant as collaboration for interviewing Russ Colchamiro.
This is my next review read on my shelf. First chapter in feels like an hitchhiker's guide to the galaxy feel to the story which is a great start for me.
Often funny and all great characters at 20%. Love all the different characters some knowing looking for the lost jar left on Earth by an accident and some stumbling into a world beyond their understanding. Loving the story so far and I'm a big Hichhicker's fan and this so far is up to that standard of writing.
Onto part two of the story. This has an intelligent writing style you expect with a good science fiction novel. Great characters that you can relate to and a story that is believable and not just silly that sometimes happens with science fiction.
The story is a page turner you find hard to put down. I found the ending cut off a little sharply but no cliffhanger. I think this could possibly be a series as the characters have more to give the reader.
This is a very strange ride. That might be the most important thing to take away from my experience with this book. Strange is good, strange is unique, strange is the kind of thing you can only read here (well, you can read strange SF in other places, too, but they won't be this kind of strange).
That doesn't tell you a lot, though, does it? This is the story of two twenty-something guys (one from the US, one from New Zealand) backpacking their way around Europe. It's the story of a young woman, an artist trying to escape from something, and her life-changing interactions with those two guys. It's also the story of a young couple, trying to better their station in life, who might have taken on a job they shouldn't have -- and their tragic blunder in the middle of carrying out that job which just might ruin their lives. There's also the woman whose ambition and slip-of-judgement that has led to her fall into disrepute and her loyal assistant as they try to stage a comeback. Oh, yeah, and there's Ira and Howard -- a dolphin and a whale -- who are basically the sea mammal answer to Cheech and Chong.
Jason's waiting tables at a small restaurant, putting off getting a teaching job, because he's just not ready to take that step, when one of his customers inspires him to head to Europe for a while. This was a huge mistake -- he's unprepared for anything, the fact that he's not robbed blind by the first slightly crooked person he meets in any country is a wonder. He eventually runs into Theo Barnes, who's only a moderately better traveler. He's on a quest -- the exact nature of which I'll leave to you -- but Ira and Howard gave him some pretty specific directions. Primarily, these two do what backpacking twenty-something males do: the drink a lot, they chase girls, the drink some more, they get lost in Europe, and drink to excess.
I'm going to pass on explaining how the others I mentioned get into the story -- there's a lot of complicated explanation -- that makes perfect sense in Colchamiro's narration, but wouldn't quite work in my summary. But most of the other people in the book aren't human -- they're a different form of life who are responsible, in one way or another, for the construction of Galaxies, Star Systems and Planets -- most notably, they're all involved in the creation of our solar system. And all of them have done something horribly wrong (inadvertently or otherwise) and all are in the middle of crazy, elaborate plans to regain their status. Colchamiro tells us about their falls and their various efforts to fix things while we watch Jason and Theo binge drink their way around Europe.
I'm honestly not sure if that paragraph made much sense -- I bet if you've read the book, it does.
What surprised me about the book wasn't the strange antics these pairs got into -- but that Colchamiro works a lot of heart and some pretty serious emotional arcs into the zaniness. He does so in a way that doesn't seem forced, it doesn't seem like he's taking a break from the outrageous actions to have a heartfelt moment, or anything -- but he seamlessly merges personal growth, insight or complex emotions into the same scenes as a talking dolphin or biker gang interrupting a son introducing his girlfriend to his mother.
There was a time back in the 90's or so where it seemed that not a week could go by without someone on a sit-com ask the clarifying question: "Did you mean funny 'ha ha,' for funny 'peculiar/strange/odd'?" I thought of that frequently while reading this book -- and once I abandoned the idea of this book being "funny 'ha-ha,'" and instead embraced the strange, the absurd, the idiosyncratic peculiarity of Finders Keepers, I enjoyed it a lot more. I'm not saying that there aren't funny moments, and it's definitely not a serious work -- it's a fun, goofy, and strange SF adventure, which we need more of. I just don't think I laughed or chuckled all that much.
That said, do I encourage you to read it? Oh yeah. Am I curious about what the next two installments of this trilogy might bring? Oh yeah. And I fully intend on finding out as soon as I can. I wager if you spend some time with this particular batch of oddballs you'll be as curious as I am -- yet pleased that you spent this much time with them. It's a great mix of heart, oddball characters, youthful indiscretions, and wisdom that time and suffering can only bring -- all in one goofy adventure.
My thanks to iREAD Book Tours for the invitation to participate in this tour and the materials they provided, including a copy of the novel.
This lighthearted science-fiction novel opens with an excerpt of the story from a way in where Theo Barnes, one of the primary protagonists, experiences a sensation like being sucked through the universe, effectively foreshadowing the trippy nature of the narrative. Author Russ Colchamiro dedicates the book to Liz, who is “forever his girl,” and prefaces the story proper detailing its disposition as a “definitive” edition in the way Star Wars creator George Lucas “remastered” the films in his series’ original trilogy. Finders Keepers was originally a standalone story, although the author allegedly finetuned it to make it part of a greater literary franchise.
The book features a style this reviewer definitely appreciated, with Colchamiro prefacing each chapter including the prologue with an indication of the setting and the time when they occur, the prologue itself occurring at the “Northern Sphere of Eternity” at the Cosmic Building Material (CBM) Training Center thirty-seven days, Eternity Standard Time, before the “official unveiling” of Earth’s Solar System. The foreword introduces the married couple Donald and Danielle, who fear wrecking their marriage, losing their jobs, receiving banishment from Eternity, and jeopardizing the Milky Way galaxy, handling the aforementioned CBM, the universe’s DNA.
The main chapters open with one of the primary Earthling protagonists, the American Jason Medley, riding with the middle-aged Englishwoman Jean, who takes him to Piccadilly Rail Station where he finds that his ticket to London is no good, despite being hellbent on getting to Rome, Italy. Jason does manage to buy a new ticket and catch a train just in time, transferring to a train in Paris en route to Rome. The book introduces its secondary protagonist, the New Zealander Theo Barnes, a few chapters in, prizing a mysterious jar supposedly pear-shaped, but seeming more traditional in illustrated section break within each chapter.
A few months prior, Theo discovered the enigmatic jar and chief MacGuffin of the story within his workplace, Waitomo Caves to the south of Auckland, New Zealand, making for trippy experiences. Back in the Northern Sphere of Eternity, Donald and Danielle make it a point to retrieve the missing jar of CBM, also the target of various adversaries such as a transgendered Dutchman named George, who goes by many other aliases, a girl named Lilly who befriends Theo early on, and two exiles from Eternity in the forms of a pudgy woman in Arizona named Emma and a dog called Lex.
Jason and Theo’s paths ultimately cross, with the aforementioned antagonists ultimately striking at the latter’s New Zealand abode, with the overall story definitely interesting, mildly creative, and with occasional popular culture references, although this reviewer didn’t really find it all that humorous, with a great amount of irrelevant filler in spite of the “definitive” edition’s alleged finetuning, as well. Some may find the excessive bouncing between various perspectives, given the brevity of most chapters, jarring as well. However, this reader definitely appreciated the indicators of time and location before each chapter, and would recommend the book to fans of works such as those by Douglas Adams.
Give the Book a Little Time. It took me a few starts and re-starts to get into this book. From the cover, I think I thought it was more of a young adult/teen read--but, it isn't (in some ways). Initially, I thought the book was going to be more science fiction themed--but, really, it is more of an adolescent comedic adventure with a fantasy setting mixing in. I started reading and stopped reading more than a few times before I pushed through the first few chapters and caught interest in the characters and the storyline.
Expect to Like the Main Characters in Finders Keepers. The author throws together a unique blend of characters in this story. While they may seem a little lost (or self centered or bumbling)--they do offer readers a fun mix of personalities that you really can't help but like and root for as the story picks up steam.
Would I recommend Finders Keepers? Readers will not find a lot of heavily involved science fiction--more of a science based fantasy adventure in this book. The author creates his story with a large cast of characters and tells the story from different points of view--in different settings--and this can be a bit confusing until you are able to sort everyone (and every location and time) into its place. The book was entertaining--and I did enjoy the characters and their interactions. I am not a huge fan of Bill and Ted style comedy--so, I didn't love the book as much as a fan of that style of humor may. Having said that, the characters made me smile and I looked forward to following their adventures through to the end of the book.
I received a copy of the book from the author or publisher. All opinions are my own.
Donald and Danielle decided to spend a little me time together on a new creation. But in their distracted state a container of Cosmic Building Materials (CBM) falls to earth. A pinch of this could literally destroy or build worlds so a lot of people go on the hunt for this missing jar.
On Earth we meet Jason and Theo, two backpackers from Europe and New Zealand that have gone on a trip across Europe. These two are complete opposites but seem to complement each other. They find the jar and not knowing what to do with it keep it. This leads to a crazy race to get the jar of CBM and one heck of an adventure.
This is a great, hilarious adventure. Jason and Theo don’t really seem like a great pair but that is what makes this a team as they cluelessly wander the world with such a powerful element tagging along with them. But you also have the scramble in Eternity as they missing jar of CBM is found. It doesn’t help that they think down on us.
This was a great story. It was funny and kept me reading to see what else Jason and Theo would get themselves into. I think anyone that likes fantasy and humor would love to read this story.
I received a complimentary copy of this book. I voluntarily chose to read and post an honest review.
Reminiscent of Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, with a touch of Wayne's World thrown in. The book wasn't a bad book, just not a great book.
Fairly adolescent humor throughout, with some gratuitous sex thrown in. The premise of a jar of cosmic goo being lost on Earth, then found by a backpacker is unique. Some of the characters were very annoying & I wanted to slap them about half the time.
I received a copy of this book & chose to review it. I am not the biggest fan of this type of book, but it was still a fun read.
Finders Keepers: The Definitive Edition is the beginning of Russ Colchamiro’s series, also called Finders Keepers. It tells the story of….. a radioactive jar of Universe’s DNA? And the crazy duo Jason and Theo being chased down by others from another realm all over world, such as, England, New Zealand, and other places in Eternity. They have no idea they are being followed and they have what others want. Earth and the whole solar system’s fate is in these crazy friends.
Finders Keepers: The Definitive Edition is quite the quirky, crazy and wild tale. I am not a huge fan of fantasy or science fiction. However, this one kept me intrigued and wondering where the story was going to lead to. I have to admit it made me laugh a few times. I had no idea this genre could be so fun, which I found it to be unique, refreshing and delightful. Jason and Theo are something else. They go on quite an unpredictable adventure that made me wondering what in the world are they going to do or get into on the following pages.
Finders Keepers: The Definitive Edition is one that should not be missed. I think many other readers would enjoy it, as well. Even if they are not fans of this genre, like me. I would love to continue reading the rest of the Finders Keepers series. I want to know what is going to happen next and see what kind of crazy ride the reader will take then.
I am giving Finders Keepers: The Definitive Edition four stars.
I received this book from the publisher. This review is 100% my own honest opinion
I was given the book free in exchange for an honest review. I enjoyed the story and characters. We follow several characters from Eternity as they try to figure a way to retrieve a jar of CBM (Celestial Building Material) which fell to Earth during it's developmental stage. On Earth, we follow Emma and her dog, Lex, as they try to figure out how to find the jar so they can return to Eternity (after being banished to Earth). Then we follow two backpackers (Jason and Theo) who are traveling from two different continents and run into each other in Europe. Theo found the jar and seeks someone who knows what it is. The whole time, neither of them know that the fate of the Milky Way is in their hands. It's a funny, sci-fi adventure across Europe with a happy ending but one that makes you want to read the next book in the series to see what happens to Eternity and the Milky Way.
I hate to DNF a book, but this is one of the most confusing and poorly written books that I have ever read. I received a free copy in exchange for my honest review.
Danielle and her husband Donald are newly married, Danielle is black and her husband is white (trust me this is surprisingly important), and when they were having sex at their job of instead watching the universe, they accidentally dropped an important jar over a railing and into Earth. This jar could destroy or create a universe. If the jar isn’t found, they could be punished by being dissolved and scattered throughout the universe.
Emma is an example of one of those punished people, except she wasn’t punished as harshly. She and her lover (I guess?) have been turned ugly and into some sort of man-dog respectively because they lost a jar, and they have been exiled to earth because of that. She is trying to find out who has the jar in order to be turned pretty again.
Jason is one of those people that doesn’t know how to find themselves, and so he decides to go on a trip around the world in order to do so. He’s probably the only characters that I actually cared about.
And Theo is the one who has the jar. Apparently touching the jar sent him on some sort of acid trip, and made him have amazing sex with this random friends with benefits girl. His brother actually smokes weed and probably other drugs, but when he tries to touch this jar they go on some sort of hallucinatory trip where they think they get eaten by a whale. So Theo decides to be a backpacker too. Idk.
So let’s go back, one by one, and say what I have to say about each storyline. Danielle and Donald. From the beginning of the book, it is known that Danielle is black, and it is affirmed by her stereotypes. Donald is the typical “pacifist” husband, who just loves his wife. Danielle, on the other hand, is rude to her husband when it’s both of their faults that they got in the situation, curses CONSTANTLY, has speech that people would probably assume to be “ghetto”, and just is screaming all of the bad stereotypes about African American women. I don’t even know if it was supposed to be funny, or what, but it just seemed to be such boring and redundant humor.
Emma and her dog-man Lex are in some sort of weird bestiality relationship. Like I don’t think I remember reading them having full-on sex, but with how confusing this story was with the POV’s I don’t even know. But she definitely did sexual things with him, and it was just horribly weird and awkward to read. I didn’t even know what to think. Plus she was doing other things with other people, and it was just weird.
Jason’s story wasn’t bad, it was just kind of a backpacking gone wrong story. It wasn’t necessarily that funny, but it wasn’t as bad as the other arcs of the story. SO I accepted this one.
Theo…I don’t even know. I don’t even know what happened to him. I don’t mind drugs in moderation in a storyline, or a character battling it, but this story just seemed to throw it around, and in the end I just saw him pop up in the storyline somewhere random and I just gave up.
This story was just a multiple POV mess, and I would not recommend to anyone. Read 210/360 ebook pages.
*** Possible Spoilers *** I agreed to act as a reviewer for this book. So, first things first – the advertisement for this book suggests that it’s imbued with the spirit of Terry Pratchett and Douglas Adams. It isn’t.
The author appears to be targeting a demographic of males aged eighteen to twenty-five. Since I’m not in this demographic or even close, it will be difficult for me to fully evaluate the book; however, I think he succeeded in producing a story and characters that will appeal to those individuals.
The plot is fairly simple. An artifact – one containing a substance that can create or destroy universes – has gone missing. Attempting to retrieve it is a collection of aliens – beings from another dimension – one that the author labels Eternity. It has been found by a human for whom it has strong hallucinogenic properties. He decides to take a trip to Europe in the hope of finding someone who can provide insight into what he has found. So we have a race by competing aliens to track down and collect the artifact and we have a road trip. This is the first volume of a trilogy so a resolution is not to be expected and there really isn’t one.
In my opinion this book is okay – not great – not terrible – just okay. It’s the sort of book one might read while sitting in an airport waiting room or while riding transit. It’s supposed to be a comedy but throughout the 339 pages I found myself chuckling exactly four times – hardly a knee-slapper but not awful either. Of course if I was in the 18 to 25 age bracket I might have found it far more humorous.
The writing is rather inconsistent. There are parts where it flowed beautifully and others where it was disjointed and difficult to read. Overall I think it was mostly pretty good but the not-so-good parts were decidedly jarring. In addition the author had a tendency to belabor some of his points. One of the rules of fiction is ‘don’t tell, dramatize’ but there was quite a bit of telling in Finders Keepers.
If you choose to read this book be aware that the first dozen or so pages are pretty tough sledding. The text seemed disjointed, the grammar questionable and the overall effect was one of – Who is this Jason character and why do I care when I so obviously don’t? After that things improved considerably.
I’ve rated this book a three and I’m not likely to continue with volumes two and three but to be fair, I don’t believe it was intended for someone like myself and I think that if I was 20 all over again I might rate it quite a bit higher.
Newlyweds, Donald and Danielle, make an unexpected stop in the Milky Way Galaxy on Earth - out and away from Eternity, their home. Not knowing this fun stop could be disastrous for them and the whole Milky Way Galaxy. They accidentally knocked their assigned jar of CBM (the Universes DNA) off a ledge into a cooling frozen humongous glacier during their hanky panky moment. Lost. Now the warehouses the jars are stored in the off hours are being inventoried and their lost jar will be caught missing, leaving them in serious trouble with consequences.
Jason, an English teacher looking for work in New York, agreed to drop everything and go on a backpacking adventure in Europe. Something completely out of his character. Not knowing what he was going to do or where to visit Jason finds himself in Europe. What could go wrong? The one question you shouldn't ask yourself... Jason finds another gentleman, Theo, who is on a mission to find a person he was sent to find that can tell him about the strange jar he found. These two pair up for their adventures.
This book can't be anything but fun. Look at that cover. If you could see the back of the cover too you would see that. This story reminded me of a farce on a fantasy of gods and creators and a folly of men out for fun and adventure. I loved it.
I enjoyed the way the characters all ended up intermingled with each other. Even when one sent another to meet someone and they all linked through a line of connections. Great work here with the character relations. As I enjoyed the follies of the boys day out, I also enjoyed the Eternitarians. They were the brief fun release for me with the "punishments" that where given to them for their wrong doings. Great lessons to be learned here.
In the end the book had touched on many subjects; friendships between different people male and female, love, sex, and touring the country side in Europe.
The journey these men take struck me as a great mans day out... without woman. The characters learn much about themselves and relationships with others, new and old, in this journey.
Disclosure: I received this book for free from the author through Goodreads' first reads program.
This book has its ups and downs, but ultimately it's a fascinating fantasy take with some well-developed, nuanced, interesting characters. Surprising for a book of the sci-fi/comedy genre, where it's usually more plot than character and more laughs than story.
The humor of the story is not my sort, and the philosophy underlying the story, as well as much of the slang language choices, is just plain gag-worthy. I guess that's sort of to be expected for a backpacking story with some reviews comparing it to dumbass comedy films. In all honesty, I like this much more than I expected to (I was just curious at how such a mashup would turn out.
It's a little odd because to really take in this book as a whole, you'd need to be able to tolerate "offensive" material but also be able to suffer a tone of happy-go-lucky Hollywood tropes. And yet I still liked it. I don't really get Hitchhiker's Guide or American Pie out of this book so much (in part because I didn't get humor from this book, and that is pretty much all there is of worth in American Pie). I see more a mix of Heinlein's more satirical stuff and those insufferable "indy" films where people "find themselves" and all that happy horseshit. But it's thankfully connected by a good storyteller, so even the most awful parts of it are forgivable. In the end it is mostly about whether the story keeps you interested.
I have two small criticisms of this book. Reading the first quarter of the book it seemed to me as if the author put chapters in random order, especially those concerning Theo. Things seemed to be happening out of sequence. I was reading it on my kindle and would have liked to go back to chapter beginnings to sort through the dates but this edition wasn't formatted to take advantage of the kindle. The other criticism I have is the portrayal of Danielle. When we are first introduced to her she comes across at times as a stereotypical ghetto sounding and at times like an immature teenager. To me a very jarring and unnecessarily unpleasant character. The characterization of Danielle seems to have mellowed and smoothed out by the end of the book, so from my perspective it would have been a good idea for the author to reassess Danielle's portrayal from the beginning.
Those issues aside it was an enjoyable book with an interesting story. The creation of the galaxy and the loss of a bottle of cosmic building material. The finding of the bottle by a New Zealander and his adventures trekking through Europe with an American trying to find out what the bottle was. The attempt by various Eternians to recover the bottle and end their exile on Earth.
And some interesting philosophical discussions along the way.
As someone who has read both the 2010 original and this new edition, I can honestly say the Definitive Edition is faster paced and, perhaps because of this, funnier than the previous version. The author has managed to streamline the story into something even more entertaining with more mainstream appeal.
To draw an analogy between the two editions, Hitchcock once said about his two versions of THE MAN WHO KNEW TOO MUCH: “Let's say the first version is the work of a talented amateur and the second was made by a professional.” Same can be said for Colchamiro’s redux of FINDERS KEEPERS.
Even if you’ve read the original, you’ll discover new things to enjoy in this Definitive Edition. A hilarious first book in a delightfully imaginative series. Highly recommended.
If Jack Kerouac had gone On The Road, not with Neal Cassady but rather Zaphod Beebebrox, his resulting novel would have turned out much like this. Finders Keepers is full of characters trying to find, and for obvious reasons trying to keep, a jarful of Essence of Universe that fell off a warehouse shelf.
The four main threads of the book follow Donald, Jason, Emma and Theo- not necessarily in that order (or, always, with those names)- as the jar proceeds to act as a verb and jar them into and out of all kinds of strange situations. Although it's been 30-plus years since I've encountered hostel crowds or the weirdness of European train schedules, Russ brought them all back with their vital roles in plotting (often against) his characters.
Virtually every chapter jumps you into itself in the middle of things, but if you accept that and just go along for the ride, it's a wild and fun one.
I was kindly sent a copy of this book. Thank you book gods for allowing me to download it. I have an up and down history with my Fire.
This sounded like a fun book and hey it was compared to Bill and Ted so I thought I'd enjoy it. Sadly I didn't. I'm not sure if it was just me but I was confused by this book. There were two stories going on at the same time and I honestly didn't feel like it was necessary. I'm not sure what's going on with that jar and the beings that are making galaxies and whatever.
On the other side you have a guy that's traveling. The pacing of the book was just awkward. I really wanted to like it but I just couldn't get into it. I just stopped when there was some random sex scene that came out of nowhere. I really think I'm not the intended audience since I just didn't get it.