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books and reading

Baal

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For the PopSugar Reading Challenge, I had no desire to read a book by or about a world leader. I just couldn’t think of anyone who interested me much. I’m not a political person, so I struggled with the prompt. My husband suggested Baal, though, which was about a person who wanted to take over the world. Baal being the anti-Christ. This book was much more up my alley.

I’ve read a couple of books by Robert McCammon, Swan Song and Boy’s Life, and both were excellent. Swan Song is a masterpiece, really, and it’s a must-read for dystopian fans. So I knew McCammon had a good track record, but I wasn’t sure about his more creature/horror type books. He has some about supernatural creatures, which isn’t really my thing, but I was going to give this one a chance and have to say, I really enjoyed this book.

Baal is born to a human mother, but we know from the onset that he’s the anti-Christ. As a child, he torments people and wreaks havoc upon every place he goes. Then he grows up, and his powers strengthen. Of course, he gets followers because, well, that’s what the anti-Christ is supposed to do. However, a few see him for what he is and refuse to let him continue his ways. As dark as the subject is, this book is really good and I enjoyed it a lot. It dragged a bit getting to the end, but for his first publication, this is a McCammon book that I  would still recommend.

 

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books and reading

Boy’s Life

Last year, I read Swan Song and absolutely loved it. I then recommended it to a friend, who also loved it. Swan Song is a wonderful book of horror, suspense, dystopia mixed with heart, character, and love. And even though it’s long and daunting, I read it quickly and vowed to read more by the author.

Which brings me to Boy’s Life by Robert McCammon. Just hearing a synopsis, I wasn’t moved to read this one. The premise, a year in one boy’s life, just didn’t appeal to me. However, I was completely wrong. I loved this book so much. Yes, it is one year in the life of Cory, a 12 year old living in Zephyr, Alabama in the 1960s, but it is much more than this.

The book starts with Cory and his father witnessing a murder, and the “whodunit” lasts through the entire novel, but it’s not a heavy storyline. Most of the book is told in vignettes about Cory, his friends, his family, and the people of the town. I laughed out loud a few times, namely at a monkey who terrorizes a Wed evening church service. I almost teared up at the end when Cory goes back to his town after having left for a number of years. Cory spends his year mourning losses, reveling in simple joys, discovering who he is, and becoming a man, whether he realizes it or not.

I grew up in a small town in the south, so Cory’s story resonated with me. Even though it wasn’t the 1960, the small town feel was still pervasive. Cory is a good kid from page one, and it was refreshing to read a book that was not only beautifully written, but one that captured life as a kid so perfectly.