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Shotgun Review: The Book of Joby

God and Lucifer once again enter into a bet in which the devil tries to sway a pure soul to join him.  Their “contender” is Joby Peterson, a boy who must grow up with all the forces of hell bent on corrupting him. 


  • The Book of Joby is a sweeping first novel, that covers everything from The Bible to Arthurian legends to flaws in the public school system.
  • The cast of characters includes demons, angels, wizards and school children.  While some of the protagonists can be a little too perfect, Mr. Ferrari does an impressive job of giving them all distinct personalities.
  • This book is one of the few examples where God is a complex character.  A being of perfect goodness is seldom interesting in fiction, but this is a version of the Great Creator readers will relate to.
  • On the other hand, the devil is something of a disappointment.  Lucifer can often be very intriguing in fiction (such as Paradise Lost and The Sandman).  However in the The Book of Joby he comes off as being a whiney supervillain.
  • This Leads me into my major qualm with the novel.  For a character who has all the legions of hell against him, Joby gets off pretty easy.  Sure, he has girl troubles and can’t keep a job, but the book never reaches the absolute level of rock bottom I was expecting, especially from an author with such an obviously vivid imagination. 
  • Despite some flaws, this is still an impressive and surprisingly addictive first novel.  And from what I have read on GoodReads.com it has been enjoyed by both believers and nonbelievers alike. 

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Reader Comments (1)

You have, of course, read Good Omens by Gaiman, yes?

April 15, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterYer Cousin

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