So...I'm angling to pick a copy of Minister Faust's latest book, From the Notebooks of Dr. Brain
. I'll share a review when I finally pick it up and get through it. One of the issues is that I'm having trouble finding it. None of the independent bookstores here in Atlanta that I've contacted carry it, and I'm going to have to order it; either through one of the bookstores, or from Amazon.
I hit Amazon, and I scan through the Editorial Reviews, and then I skip down to the Customer Reviews. That's when I see that you can comment on the Customer Reviews. I read the lone comment
on one of the reviews and it said:
I just wasted an hour of my life but I was curious how many books she has reviewed from Feb 1 (she actually started on the 3rd) until today the 18th. A total of 167 in 16 days, 97 5s, 70 4's. Wow, I hope she is receiving these books for free!
Hhhhmmmmm...okay. Let me pull up the reviewer's profile. Let's see. It says "#1 Reviewer." I check to see exactly what this means. Turns out that Harriet Klausner
, at least for right now, is the #1
Reviewer for ALL OF AMAZON. Not top 1%. Top 1. She has written over 13,000 reviews. That's Thirteen Thousand
. For free! Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but Amazon doesn't pay for reviews. She has received over 83,000 "helpful" votes on her reviews. For a moment, forget about how many books she's read. Think about the amount of stuff she's written herself. 13,000 reviews, each about 300 words. This is above and beyond the reviews she gets paid for, because most publications don't like you to give out for free the stuff that they pay you for. That's...that's crazy
. Get a life, Woman! Go outside! Take a walk!
I was an acquisitions librarian in Pennsylvania
and wrote a monthy review column of recommended
reads. I found I liked reviewing and went on to
freelance after my son was born.
I have 2 dogs, a cairn and a pom, and four cats. Oh, I have a 21 year old son and a husband who wants to but is nowhere near retiring.
I am a speed reader( a gift I was born with) and read two books a day.
Sometimes, as I go through life, I come across people and I think "I can do that job. Probably better than that person." I think it would be a pretty cool job to be a Freelance Book Reviewer, but there's no way in hell
I could read 2 books a day.
But then again, why would I want to? There's no joy in it. Half of the pleasure of reading lies in ruminating on the thoughts of the author. Marveling at the creativity it takes to write a good story.
This is really bothering me the more I think about it. If you're doing all of that speed reading, can you really enjoy what you read? Can you even enjoy reading? The newspaper? Shit, even a billboard? I'm sorry, but after I read two or three thousand
books, I'd have to stop and maybe switch to movies for a few YEARS. I'd be tired of using my eyes. I GUARANTEE she wears glasses!
If I was an author, I wouldn't want my book to be one of 40 books you read in a given month, and that's IF you don't work weekends. I'd much rather my book be the only book you read in...a year. That would mean that you took your time with it. Savored it. This woman is...wasting books
. I'll have to think about it more, but that may be a worse crime than not reading them at all.
Know What I'm Sayin'??
Br. Minister Faust
BLOG T.O. SUNDAY BOOK REVIEW: “From the Notebooks of Doctor Brain is a major accomplishment that is laugh out loud funny... This is the most revolutionary work of SF since William Gibson’s Neuromancer. Faust has invented a whole new genre of writing and rendered it in some of best prose in any genre. He’s basically given birth to the future. And it’s one good looking baby.... Although it’s only February, I’m confident in saying that the best SF book of the 2007 - maybe the best book of the year-- has already been published.”
SUNQIST BLOG: “The best book of the year, which has been out for something like four days at this point, is From the Notebooks of Doctor Brain, by Minister Faust ... [whose] first book, The Coyote Kings of the Space-Age Bachelor Pad... was also excellent. This is an amazing book.... It works on about six different levels... incredibly important....”
From Karen Sullivan of Sunqist: “Reading this book was like standing on the edge of history.... In fifty years, they’re either going to be teaching this book in high schools, or banning this book in high schools. Reading Doctor Brain is what I imagine reading Animal Farm or Catch-22 was like for people when those books came out, before anybody knew anything about them.”
THE GATEWAY: “[W]onderfully developed characters... such a pleasure to read. It’s shocking to see entire hours of time eaten up as the chapters flowed one into the next, and yet you’ll be unwilling to put it down; you’ll want to see what new revelations exist around each corner... rife with scathing social commentary and political satire [on] the nature of modern journalism and politics, to drugs, racism and vapid, shallow celebrities, everything’s open game.... [E]xcellent... highly recommended.”
VUE WEEKLY: “The humour is only bait-deep—Doctor Brain, both the book and character, is a blisteringly merciless send-up of modern mental-health manipulation.”
THE EDMONTON JOURNAL: “Tough political message underlies comedy about a Doctor Phil for the superhuman.... a wicked sense of humour, not to mention a satirist’s sharp eye for the (under)cutting detail, the small touches in parody that announce his tale is after bigger game than it might seem at first to be.... [L]ots of laughs, but after all the fun and games, readers will note that beneath the bravura comedy there’s a tough political message about our real-world circumstances. ... [M]arvellously askew bunch of characters ... a parallel world that has all too much in common with our own. And the climax beautifully skewers both narrator and reader... highly entertaining and sneakily politically provocative.”
STATIC MULTIMEDIA.COM: “From the Notebooks of Doctor Brain showcases Faust’s keen ability to apply humour to traditional genre conventions and delve into pop culture, making it a hilarious, sure-fire page turner.”
THE EDMONTON SUN: “Doctor Brain is a wildly imaginative superhero parody ... the satire expands to cover the entire planet.”
PUBLISHERS WEEKLY (STARRED REVIEW): “[S]harp satire of caped crusaders hides a deeper critique of individual treatment versus social injustice.... Faust's well-aimed jabs spare no super sacred cows nor many pop idols and psychobabbling media stars. Underneath the humor, careful readers will find uncomfortable parallels to real-world urban tragedies in the novel's 'July 16 Attacks,' where Faust gives a double meaning to the 'Crisis of Infinite Dearths.'"
ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH: “Faust comes up with a plot that is simple on the surface and brilliantly complex in its layers... murder, complex conspiracies and lover's quarrels... [r]acism, consumerism, hero worship and even 9/11 get the Faustian treatment in this over-the-top but always dead-on satire of our times.”
BOOKLIST: ”[An] excellent superhero comedy as well as an unsettling satire.”
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: “Entertaining... saavy.”
BOOKPAGE: “[M]ight be one of the most entertaining books to cross your path this year.... Faust is an original writer with a passionate interest in people—be they crazy or “normal”—and his pulpy satire takes accurate swings at our me-first society and the pop culture idols who have floated to the top.”
SCIFI.COM: “[Minister Faust’s] insane fecundity and jazzy verbal dexterity, his sheer brio and exuberance... reminds me of Ishmael Reed or Steve Aylett... plenty of moments in this novel where I laughed out loud.”
RENO GAZETTE-JOURNAL: “A hilarious new voice.... One of the most compelling reads I've experienced... a wild mixture of liberal politics, black power, psychoanalysis, mystery and, yes, superheroes.... The real conflict here is between ideas -- whether one's oppression is generated by one's own superego or by societal forces stacked against one.... One of the most layered, complicated narratives I've come across, and the ending is particularly chilling.”