Monday, October 31, 2016

Book Review + Giveaway: In the Beginning: Dark Retellings of Biblical Tales



In the Beginning: Dark Retellings of Biblical Tales
Publication Date: October 25, 2016
Publisher:  Month9Books
My rating: 3.5 - 4 of 5 stars

Eight authors come together to build a powerful collection of dark young adult short stories inspired by the mysteries, faith, and darkness found within the Bible. Old Testament and New Testament, iconic and obscure figures alike are illuminated, explored, and re-envisioned throughout this charity anthology from Month9Books.

IN THE BEGINNING, ed. Laureen Cantwell and Georgia McBride

Daniel and the Dragon by Stephen Clements
A troubled orphan named Habakkuk dutifully follows his master, the prophet Daniel, into temples of blood-thirsty demon-gods, battles with unspeakable horrors, and bears witnesses to mind-breaking evil until his master's zealous defiance of the king's law seals their fate.

Babylon by Nicole Crucial
Far above the earth, in Second Eden, where moments and eternities all blur together, young Babylon befriends Sefer, the Book of Life. As Babylon awaits the moment she'll fulfill her destiny, she and Sefer try to understand the world in which they live.

Last Will and Testament by Mike Hays
A homeless young boy, Baz, bears the weight of humanity on his shoulders and upon his body. When dark forces test a new-found friendship, Baz’s willingness to bear the ugliness of their world will be shaken. 

The Demon Was Me by Sharon Hughson
Based on the story of the demon-possessed boy healed by Jesus, this tale provides a glimpse into a post-apocalyptic world where a teenage boy seeks to journey to a better land and yearns to discover the kind of man he's meant to be, only to be hijacked by an evil spirit intent upon chipping away at the hope, faith, and resilience of its host.

The Deluge by Marti Johnson
A non-believer shares the story of Noah’s ark-building and the deadly downpour that follows. Fear, faithlessness, and the fallibility of mankind collide in a community where second chances aren’t unlimited and a better-late-than-never attitude just might be your doom.

Condemned by Elle O'Neill
Just sixteen-years-old, Barabbas finds himself pulled out of Routlege Academy and into a reality show competition—against Jesus himself—where the reward for the winner is life.

First Wife by Lora Palmer
In a first-person retelling of the saga of Jacob, Rachel and Leah, themes of family, deception, guilt, and heartache emerge amidst the first days of Leah’s marriage to Jacob—a marriage mired in trickery a mere week before Jacob was to marry Leah's sister Rachel.

Emmaculate by Christina Raus
Based on the story of Mary's Immaculate Conception, we enter the troubled mind of Emma, who finds herself torn between her religious upbringing and the purity ring that binds her to her boyfriend and the pregnancy that results from her relationship with another boy.

My Thoughts:

My reason for deciding to read this: I had just finished reading another book which had the narrator making bible references that left me confused and thinking "Someone should do a retelling of some of these stories."
Well, apparently someone heard me because I was informed about this tour the very next day. (Or maybe later that day, I can't say.)

That being said it should be obvious that I've never read the bible. (My grandma use to take me to church but I stopped after they scared the crap out of me by saying that the devil was everywhere. I was eight I took it literally.)
I am familiar with maybe half of the stories being retold, but I don't know if that made too much of a difference in reading this book.

My rating of 3.5 - 4 of 5 stars: Like with all anthologies some stories are great, some not so great and others leave you wanting more. I struggled in the beginning and actually wondered if I would be able to continue but something inside me kept saying it'll be worth it in the end.
And it definitely was. It just kept getting better.
A couple really did leave me wanting more. Thinking: What happens next?! or What! I was just really getting into it!

Of the eight stories five are 4 stars and three land around the 3.5 mark good but just missing that extra something.

My favorites: Emmaculate by Christina Raus, The Deluge by Marti Johnson, The Demon Was Me by Sharon Hughson.

Giveaway Information:  Contest ends November 11, 2016

·         One (1) winner will receive a scrabble tile book cover charm (US ONLY)

·         Five (5) winners will receive a digital copy of In the Beginning: Dark Retellings of Biblical Stories (INT)

No comments:

Post a Comment