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Monday, August 24, 2009

More Than a Skeleton by Paul L Maier

Maybe I shouldn't have read the sequel before I read the first book! But I did anyway.
More Than a Skeleton tells the story of Jonathan Weber, an archaeologist who has been known for saving the world. He is a perfect character who finds himself caught in a lawsuit for something he said in a magazine article. The opposing side is Melvin Morris Merton, a famous TV evangelist and the recipient of this evil comment. Jon's lawyer is the perfect model lawyer, while Melvin's lawyer is a complete clown, Southern accent and all. "Mah client" he says, "didn't do nothin rawng!" His extremely exaggerated dialogue wears on the reader.
After winning the extremely short and easy court case, Jon moves on to challenge Joshua Ben-Yosef, whom the whole world is calling the returned Jesus! He's doing it all: preforming miracles, telling parables, spouting wisdom, predicting the future, speaking in tongues; only Jon believes it's all a hoax.
The romantic subplot is one of the strangest I have ever read. Shannon, the female lead, is portrayed as merely Jon's girlfriend at first, because they are in different countries. When they reunite, the reader suddenly finds out that they've been married the whole time! (You were obviously supposed to read the first book first!)
Besides all this, the core problem of the book is the characters and dialogue. It's like they're on helium the whole time! Jon says "where in the blazes!" and "what in the blazes!" all the time. Shannon is either annoyingly happy or ridiculously sad. The dialogue is littered with excessive explanation marks. (I have added them to this review in proportion to how many are in the book to give an example) All the characters, including the villains, are unusually peppy and sappy for the entire book. That also wears down the reader.
The plot is one of the more absurd I've ever read! It's littered with more coincidences and ridiculous scenes than I have ever seen in any book (except maybe The Dead Whisper On)!
I don't really know what made A Skeleton in God's Closet a number one bestseller, but I'm going to find out! You never know what this type of author is going to do next!
1 star

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