Thursday, October 18, 2007

THE BOOK OF JOBY - Masterful Opening

When I buy a debut novel (although Mark sent me this copy -- thanks, Mark!), sometimes I merely buy it out of curiosity. Why would this concept attract a publisher?

With THE BOOK OF JOBY by Mark J. Ferrari, that was evident in the opening chapters.

The concept was so unusual, even though it is thousands of years old. God and Lucifer are having a conversation, setting up yet another bet similar to the one in the book of Job, in the Bible. They have done this thousands of times, and God almost always wins. However, this time, Lucifer wants to up the stakes. He wants the fate of all creation to hinge upon the outcome.

Right away, we have sympathy for the poor sap that God chooses to be the focus of the bet. And we haven't even met him yet.

The plot jumps to the angel Michael, who is watching over some sort of protected town in California. God stops by to warn him that his candidate will soon be coming through, (although not for years in human-time) and all the legions of Hell will be on his heels. Michael must prepare the town's sheltered citizens for the onslaught.

Then, we finally meet Joby, a 4th grader with a passion for King Arthur and his knights.

Among all this, imagine lush writing that strikes a nice balance between leisurely and fast-paced. Ferrari takes the time for highly literary descriptions, yet the conversations are realistic and laced with humor.

I'm hooked!

Don't forget my giveaway contest for THE BOOK OF JOBY. Scroll down for details.


Katie said...

Wow, that sounds pretty cool.

Tia said...

OMG it gets even better. Joby had absolutely no religious eductation before the opening of the story. He goes to church for the first time and wonders why "Geeses" has the same name as a curse word. When he speculates that it would be like having the same name as "Dang It" and "Holy Moly" I was howling with laughter.

SQT said...

I haven't had a chance to read this yet though I bought it as a b-day present to myself. From everything I hear it's an excellent book.

Tia said...

Happy Birthday!!! It's great so far!