Mary Yarde's Reviews > From His Perspective

From His Perspective by Lisa Keeble
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it was amazing

“It wasn’t a piece of biscuit, just one crumb, that’s all, I promise. One tiny crumb fell into one of the black holes and then there was a bit of an explosion...”

In the beginning, there was darkness, and the Boss liked the darkness. He had spent years creating the darkness. He was very proud of the darkness. But, then Norbert sneezed while eating a biscuit and there was an incident with a size seven tweed slipper which catastrophically ended with a rather large and unexpected big bang. And the darkness was no more.

What was needed in such an unprecedented situation was tea and copious amounts of biscuits. Perhaps, after a digestive or two, they would, to their delight, discover that this happy accident was an opportunity to create something far greater than darkness, and far more significant than nothing.

Nevertheless, next time, they would stick to the approved blueprints. However, life, as the Boss and Norbert found out, had an awful habit of not staying true to its design. Suddenly, there were fish who wanted to live on the land, and a dinosaur who went around killing everything it met, and then, of course, there was man — the Boss’ most distinguished and regrettable invention.

From the beginning of time to the present day, From His Perspective by Lisa Keeble is the farcical retelling of a snack disaster that resulted in the origin and evolution of the universe, and life on earth.

From His Perspective is a book where I found myself laughing out loud, especially at Norbert and his many antics, on more than one occasion. From the first page, I felt like I was reading a book penned by Douglas Adams — it has the same comforting familiarity of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.There was the same ridiculousness in the story which was incredibly compelling and extremely amusing. From His Perspective is an easy read, and although it has a few mild sex references and equally mild bad language, I think it is a book that would highly appeal to a young adult 14+ audience.

Keeble has cleverly crafted a caricature of the life of man. There are some notable historical figures mentioned during the course of this book — from Moses to Jesus, William the Conquerer to Henry VIII — all of which are painted with a satirical stroke of the quill. I don’t think Keeble was going for historical accuracy when she wrote about these characters but instead, she has depicted them with a rather big pinch of salt and a hefty helping of creative licence, but it does lead to some amusing anecdotes — Moses wandered in the wildness for four decades because he had no sense of direction, who knew?

With a satirical eye on creationism and religion, Keeble has penned a book that, despite all the humour, addresses some of the worst traits of humanity. The disregard for life, the selfishness, greed and corruption of the ruling classes over the course of human history from the beginning of time until now, is all carefully depicted. Throughout this book, Keeble has one eye on the message she wants to get across while having a novelists intuition about what makes a book hilariously funny.

When portraying the life of man, Keeble has also used political satire to great effect. Her depiction of the French Revolution is an example where Keeble has done this particularly well, and despite all the humour, this is a book that asks you to think. What is right? What is wrong? And why do we allow atrocities to occur, when we, the sheep, are far bigger in number than the shepherds who so-called look after our interests? There are some crucial questions in this book, that perhaps, on a philosophical level, Keeble wants her readers to think carefully about before answering.

The Boss is in want of a better word, a biscuit munching mad scientist, who is playing God, rather than actually being him. His side-kick is his wonderfully awkward and shy personal assistant who goes by the name of Norbert. There are no celestial beings in this book — this is not a book about God and nor does it pretend to be. The Boss, Norbert, and the other characters who live in this realm create the world that we live in and the creatures and flora that we know. They then sit back and watch as one would do a television show. We humble humans are the entertainment, and such entertainment is at times very difficult for the Boss to witness. He tries to intervene on occasions, and yet still, man does not seem to understand how to live in harmony and peace. The Boss really struggles with morality in this book. He looks down upon his experiment and wonders what went wrong? Like any benevolent parent, he questions if he is to blame — did he make man too sheeplike? Had he really needed to add hate to balance love? So many questions, and no answers. In the end, the Boss turns his back and spends several decades playing checkers, in the hope that by the time he returns, man would have caused their own extinction! Alas, they did not.

I was thoroughly amused by Lisa Keeble’s From His Perspective from start to finish. Fans of Douglas Adams, and Monty Python, will enjoy this book very much!

I Highly Recommend.

Review by Mary Anne Yarde.
The Coffee Pot Book Club.
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Reading Progress

January 22, 2020 – Shelved
January 22, 2020 – Shelved as: to-read
January 27, 2020 – Started Reading
January 27, 2020 – Finished Reading

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