Jessica's Reviews > Johannes Cabal the Necromancer

Johannes Cabal the Necromancer by Jonathan L. Howard
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This book was just what I needed after coming out of my Mockingjay funk. Mockingjay was brilliant, don’t get me wrong, but it also sucked my will to live in 7 loaded hours. I was in a daze for, like, two days. I think I could only move on to other books because my mom started reading it after I finished, preventing me from a re-read, and I got to meet up with my best friend to discuss and have group therapy over our very similar, life-ending experiences.

So yes, dry British humor was what I needed to slap some sense into me. Ironically, it was a story about Hell, Satan, and Necromancy that plucked me out of my depression and had me laughing out loud in public.

The book did drag in a few odd places, mostly near the beginning, but that’s really my only criticism (Well, that and the appalling lack of female characters! Layla the Latex Lady doesn’t count. However, the ending does give me hope for the sequel!). The characters, the dialogue, the obscure/odd references, the lighter take on seriously serious issues…all of it works together to form a novel that is quirky and sometimes unpredictable, goofy and occasionally disgusting, but above all, hilarious. The author, Howard, reminds me of Douglas Adams and Neil Gaiman (Truly, the highest of compliments).

However, despite the crafty absurdity, there is an underlying seriousness to the book, a human element. It’s a character study of motivation and relationships (and how the two influence one another) and the true nature of evil (is it taking people’s souls or insisting a person in Limbo must fill out thousands of forms with no eraser?). The laughs and the bizarre twists do a good job of distracting from that seriousness, but if the ending is any indication, Howard will touch more upon these themes in the sequel.

I will suggest this book to everybody, because it would be a shame to never read about Johannes Cabal and his serious lack of social skills. He’s soulless, yes, but not heartless.
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Quotes Jessica Liked

Jonathan L. Howard
“It's a philosophical minefield!"

Cabal had a brief mental image of Aristotle walking halfway across an open field before unexpectedly disappearing in a fireball. Descartes and Nietzsche looked on appalled. He pulled himself together.”
Jonathan L. Howard, Johannes Cabal the Necromancer

Reading Progress

Started Reading
September 5, 2010 – Finished Reading
September 6, 2010 – Shelved
January 21, 2011 – Shelved as: literary-crush
January 21, 2011 – Shelved as: hilarious
January 21, 2011 – Shelved as: dark-and-creepy
January 21, 2011 – Shelved as: fantasy
April 19, 2011 – Shelved as: reviewed-books
January 6, 2012 – Shelved as: favorites
April 13, 2013 – Shelved as: snarky-narrator
April 13, 2013 – Shelved as: witty
August 3, 2013 – Shelved as: zombies-yo

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