Mr Mercedes Buddy Read – 75%

mrmercedesWell, I went into this knowing how it had affected me so far. A couple of things were different from other times, so bear with me.

First, Mrs Bookstooge and I went to a small chinese sda church outside of Boston today where we witnessed the baptism of 14 people. 2 of them were little girls of some people we knew from our home church. The age range was from single digits up to the 70’s. Nothing is more encouraging than seeing someone take that intelligent choice to follow Jesus. It reminds you that there is Hope, that “you” are not alone and that “you” are not the last bastion of hope for all of Christendom. Sometimes we Christians forget that God is actually in charge. So that was one big factor.

Secondly, I deliberately turned off my “feelings” when going into this. I didn’t allow myself to picture these fictional characters as real people, I disconnected myself from the story.

Those together allowed me to power through another 25% in one sitting.

So spoilers ahead!

I KNEW somebody had to die, I just wasn’t sure who. Jerome or Janey? Well, King answered that question quite decisively. After I started this book I realized from talking with Tyson Adams about Book 2, that this was a trilogy and most love interests don’t last for a whole trilogy, especially not in horror books. So I should have seen this coming from a mile away, but I just didn’t want to think to hard about it.

Brady’s plan for the concert seems to have kicked into high gear and he’s not concentrating on Hodges anymore. I know nothing about plastic explosives so I still wonder how much damage a wheelchair full of the stuff could cause. I’m not interested enough to search it out on the internet either. I know the NSA is spying on me, right? And considering that I haven’t even had a chance to do a Survival Saturday post yet, I’m just too young to be locked away in a black room and have my brains picked.

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A sneak peak at next week’s choice. Yummy!?!? Right…..

 

I get that things are now personal for Hodges and he wants to do this on his own, and I’m really glad he’s picked a time to give up and hand it in to the police. But now that Janey is no longer a driving factor, why is he staying involved? Hodges has already thought that he’s not going to kill Mr Mercedes, just apprehend him and beat him up. What is the point? If you are going to take the Law into your own hands, do it fully. That means, Judge, Jury AND Executioner. Or let the proper law enforcement officers do their job. Half measure piss me off.

I ended my reading with Hodges and Co [Jerome and Janey’s cousin who is a basketcase] realizing that Bradley was also the icecream man. Not sure how that helps them any beyond showing how he kept tabs on people and stuff.  I guess that is why I’m reading books and not writing them.

bookstooge

 

Bookstooge’s Mr Mercedes Posts

BookCupidity’s Mr Mercedes Posts

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Bane of Malekith (Warhammer: Tyrion & Teclis #3) ★☆☆☆ ½ DNF@27%

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This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot, Librarything & Tumblr by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission
Title: Bane of Malekith
Series: Warhammer: Tyrion & Teclis #3
Author: William King
Rating: 1.5 of 5 Stars
Genre: Fantasy
Pages: 416
Format: Digital Edition

 

Synopsis:

DNF @ 27%

 

My Thoughts:

Nothing was happening. I was not in the mood for some b-quality fantasy book to give me a modicum of entertainment. This was no worse than the previous 2 books but that is damning praise. It was like eating spaghetti but without any sauce or meatballs or spices.

I am really not having good luck with the Warhammer universe. Savageddt has suggested I try some Gotrek and Felix. My only reservation is that those books appear to also be written by William King and I’d really like to try someone else. Guess I’ll be spending some time this weekend checking some other Warhammer series out.

★☆☆☆ ½

bookstooge

 

  1. Sword of Caledor (Book 2)
  2. Blood of Aenarion (Book 1)

Redemption (Omega Force #7) ★★★☆☆

redemption (Custom)

This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot, Librarything & Tumblr by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission
Title: Redemption
Series: Omega Force #7
Author: Joshua Dalzelle
Rating: 3 of 5 Stars
Genre: SF
Pages: 304
Format: Digital Edition

 

Synopsis:

Taking place 3 years after the previous book, Omega Force has fallen apart due to Cristoff abandoning one of the Omega Force members when they can’t fulfill one of his missions. Jason tries to keep the team together but when he can’t, he gives up, moves to a beach front world, becomes a delivery boy with Lucky the robot and pretty much lets himself go. He also completely burns his bridges with Kallea when rescuing Crusher.

When the princess for another galaxy spanning Empire, rivaling that of the ConFed, is kidnapped, it appears that war is going to happen and billions could die. The princess’s handmaid escapes, on Jason’s old delivery ship, he’s involved whether he wants to be or not. The only way to rescue the princess and prevent interstellar war is to get the gang back together. But when one Super Power wants you dead and a clique within the other is plotting to take over, things might be harder than expected.

But Omega Force always gets the job done. And with this job, they have the thanks of the King of an Empire, with “mysterious” problems along its other borders. And a princess that has the hots for Cap’n Jason. * wolf whistle *

Almost like Dalzelle is setting up future story installments.

 

My Thoughts:

This starts off with a barely functioning Jason, drunk as a skunk getting helped along by Lucky. It was rather disconcerting, as we don’t get WHY Omega Force fell apart until some time later.

In many ways, this felt like Dalzelle ran out of ideas for within the ConFed and so kind of rebooted the whole Omega Force thingamajig. I didn’t feel that it was handled real well, especially with how things with Kallea went down. Relationships, even fake ones in books, shouldn’t get treated like a drama prop.

Other than that, this was exactly the same in tone as all the previous Omega Force books. If I was in a cranky mood like I was when I read Dark Matter I’d probably rip into this more. But I don’t expect much from these, so I don’t have to give much in a review. These are like Forgotten Realms for Science Fiction.

★★★☆☆

bookstooge

 

  1. Secret of the Phoenix (Book 6)
  2. Return of the Archon (Book 5)
  3. The Enemy Within (Book 4)
  4. Savage Homecoming (Book 3)
  5. Soldiers of Fortune (Book 2)
  6. Omega Rising (Book 1)

 

How to Survive and Thrive! In Church ★★★★☆

survivechurch (Custom)

This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot, Librarything & Tumblr by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission
Title: How to Survive and Thrive! In Church
Series: ——
Author: Doug Batchelor & Karen Lifshay
Rating: 4 of 5 Stars
Genre: Non-fiction
Pages: 128
Format: Paperback

 

Synopsis:

Batchelor, a 7th Day Adventist pastor and author, writes this little book on how to survive various types of churches but also how to contribute and make your church a better place.

There are 16 chapters, each focusing either on a particular type of church [dead, big, little, divided, etc] or on a particular problem in church [scandal, gossip, doctrinal doubts, etc] and the final chapter entitled “Not Just Surviving – Succeeding!”

 

My Thoughts:

This is not a comprehensive help book. I read this in one sitting, one evening. It is a lightly humorous book meant to highlight some of the common problems in any and all churches and what you, as an individual, can do.

Basically, Batchelor boils it down to “don’t give up”. Like I said, I read this in one sitting and it was like a nice bottle of gatorade on a hot day while working hard. It’s not a meal but it refreshes you and allows you to keep going until it IS meal time. Batchelor also stresses personal responsibility in your spiritual life. You have to read your Bible and pray if you want to stay connected to God. Going to church once a week to get “fed” isn’t going to cut it.

Batchelor is unabashedly 7th Day Adventist and while this could be used for almost any denomination, it is aimed at SDA’ers. Many of his quotes are from the writings of Ellen White. If that would be a problem for you, then I would not recommend this book.

Anyone who goes to church could benefit from reading this book. Treat it like the word of encouragement it is and not as a theological treatise and you will be well served.

I do wish that there had been an “Interested In More…” epilogue. Could have pointed to some specific, deeper, more relevant books on particular topics. That would have been a nice springboard.

★★★★☆

bookstooge

Dark Matter ★★★☆☆

darkmatter (Custom)

This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot, Librarything & Tumblr by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission
Title: Dark Matter
Series: ——
Author: Blake Crouch
Rating: 3 of 5 Stars
Genre: SF
Pages: 354
Format: Digital Edition

 

Synopsis:

Jason Desson, a once up and coming scientist [which type, I forget. It doesn’t matter to me or any normal person who reads this book. It would be like describing which handgun some hero used. It only matters to a very small segment] chose his family life with his wife and son-to-be over his career and now teaches at a local college.

He is kidnapped one night and wakes up in another world. He figures out he’s in a parallel universe and with the help of one the scientists from Jason2’s world, attempts to get back to “his” world. And ‘his’ Daniella.

After much experimenting and whining and other bs, he makes it home. Only to find that what makes the whole paralell universe thing viable is that there are over 70 other Jason who all made it back too. Our Jason thinks of a clever plan, rescues his wife and son, outsmarts all the other Jasons and uses his son to find a new world to start a new life on.

 

My Thoughts:

I wanted to enjoy this more than I did. Part of it is that everything is predicated on an atheistic outlook, ie, there is no Supreme Being, no Supreme Observer. Schrodinger’s Cat razzle dazzle means diddly squat if there is one all knowing, all seeing, all powerful God. Dark Matter, too. The second issue is where is all this energy coming from to create all these branched universes? Parallel worlds being created with every choice we make sounds great and if you’re 25 is a great idea to bat around, but when you look at it through the lens of universal constants, it is as pie in the sky as the moon being made of green cheese. The third ramification is that of the soul. That is theology and once again, it is completely bypassed and ignored. For me, that as actually more important and the lack of thought about it pushed me out of the story.

Ok, with all of those out of the way….

Ha, who I am kidding.

I enjoyed this. BUT…

Sliders. Stargate SG1. Other tv shows I can’t even remember off the top of my head. I kept getting flashes of those while reading this. I felt like I was re-treading an old trail.

It was fun. It was interesting. It wasn’t original though and I have to admit, from all the rah, rah, rah I’d heard about Crouch, I was expecting something original. Crap, maybe I’m getting old. I can handle unoriginal ideas. I thrive on the Hero’s Journey, Coming of Age stories, the Underdog Winning against Impossible Odds, the Evil McEvilson getting his Just Rewards [of death!]. But this was like those conversations I had with my friend Isaac when we were in highschool, bibleschool and shortly after. As soon as the guy in the mask showed up, I knew every major plot point that was going to happen and that disappointed me.

This was not a bad book by any means. I would recommend it to “New to SF” readers, it’ll blow their minds. But my mind’s already been blown by this idea, 15-20+ years ago. Timothy Zahn explored this in his short stories. Go read his short collection Cascade Point and Other Stories.

I just wanted to like this more and I couldn’t.

★★★☆☆

bookstooge

 

The Confession of Brother Haluin (Brother Cadfael #15) ★★☆☆ ½

haluin (Custom)

This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot, Librarything & Tumblr by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission
Title: The Confession of Brother Haluin
Series: Brother Cadfael #15
Author: Ellis Peters
Rating: 2.5 of 5 Stars
Genre: Mystery
Pages: 208
Format: Digital Edition

 

Synopsis:

Brother Haluin almost dies and confesses to the head Priest and Cadfael. He had an encounter of the flesh with a young woman, who he got with child 18 years ago. Haluin gave the mother herbs from Cadfael’s herbariam to end the pregnancy but the mother told Haluin that it ended up killing the mother along with the child. And that was when Haluin entered the abbey, in despair.

He ends up surviving his ordeal, he gives himself the penance of walking to the dead woman’s tomb and keeping vigil for a night. Haluin’s feet being crippled due to the ordeal, Cadfael is tasked with helping him keep his vow.

In a string of coincidences that can only happen in a murder mystery, we find out that Haluin was lied to by the mother and that the young woman was married off and the child raised as that other man’s. Said young woman is now a nun as old as Haluin. Their daughter has love issues all of her own which are neatly resolved when it is revealed that she is NOT the blood daughter of the Old Duke. An old lady servant is killed by the nun’s mother to keep everything secret. Because the old mother did all of this because she wanted the young man back in the day and he wouldn’t commit adultery with her, as she was married. So she starts this whole chain of events.

Everyone except the old mother ends up being reasonably satisfied with how things turn out and Brother Haluin and Cadfael return to their abbey.

 

My Thoughts:

This was a typical Brother Cadfael mystery. He’s just an observer like he has been in the last several and has very little to do with the actual story. So that’s where I’d normally give this a 3star rating. But this time around a lot of the story is driven by ideas of absolution and atoning for you own sins, ie, working to get your sins forgiven. Haluin makes it a point that if he can’t fulfill his vow, he won’t be forgiven. And it is stated outright that he doesn’t feel like he’ll be forgiven if he doesn’t DO some sort of very hard penance.

Normally the catholic practices and theology are kept in the background of these books. This time around though, they played a much bigger part and cut right across everything the Bible actually says about forgiveness of sins. When I hear about earning forgiveness for your sins, well, that just sets my staunch Protestant soul ablaze. I won’t go into the details, as this is not a theology post. But it really took this book down a peg for me. I’ve actually been surprised this hasn’t happened before.

I’ve got 5 or 6 more Brother Cadfael books to go and I’m really hoping I can stick it out to the end. But to be honest, these are getting boring; that’s almost as bad as un-Biblical theology in my mind!

★★☆☆ ½

bookstooge

 

  1. The Hermit of Eyton Forest (Book 14)
  2. The Rose Rent (Book 13)
  3. Raven in the Foregate (Book 12)
  4. An Excellent Mystery (Book 11)
  5. The Pilgrim of Hate (Book 10)

 

Comment Purgatory? Update

scanned-joke

Update:

After contacting Akismet, the company that deals with spam and spammers on wordpress, I appear to be back in action.  I was not told why my comments went straight to spam and honestly, I don’t care.

Now, any of the comments I might have left are still in your spam folders, but from here on out, any new comments by me should come through.

Hallelujah!!!

Now I can blab to my heart’s content. Thank you for your forbearance.

 

 

Original Post:

Last night I left a couple of comments on various blogs, no problem.  This morning, every comment I’ve left has disappeared. I’m guessing it went into peoples’ spam comment thingy. At first I thought it was because I’d hit the wrong button instead of “submit”, but nope, my comments are gonzo’d!

I know a couple of you have gone through the same thing. I’m going to wait until tomorrow and see if it fixes itself. If it doesn’t, does anyone know where I begin? This is one of the few downside of wordpress having such a hands off attitude.

So if I’m not saying anything on your posts, I’m trying, honest!

 

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bookstooge