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The Gates by John Connolly

>> Tuesday, January 28, 2014

The Gates by John Connolly

The Gates by John Connolly

Genre: Fantasy Fiction, Horror
Series: #1 in the Samuel Johnson vs. The Devil series
Publisher: Atria Books
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 293
Source: Library

The Short Version:
When his neighbors unwittingly open a gateway to hell, 11 year old Samuel Johnson must save the world as we know it.

Why I Read It:
Several people whose recommendations I trust were talking about the newest book in this series and it sounded like it would be fun.

The Book:
From the publisher:

Young Samuel Johnson and his dachshund, Boswell, are trying to show initiative by trick-or-treating a full three days before Halloween, which is how they come to witness strange goings-on at 666 Crowley Road. The Abernathys don't mean any harm by their flirtation with the underworld, but when they unknowingly call forth Satan himself, they create a gap in the universe, a gap through which a pair of enormous gates is visible. The gates to Hell. And there are some pretty terrifying beings just itching to get out.... Can one small boy defeat evil? Can he harness the power of science, faith, and love to save the world as we know it?

My Thoughts:
I never expected to be giggling my way through a book about demonic hordes trying to destroy the world as we know it but I did. As for what the Large Hadron Collider has to do with it I’m not going to tell you because you just have to read this to find out for yourself.

Within the first couple of chapters I was reading passages to The Hubster and making plans to get this book back from the library when he is ready to start a new book because he has to read this.

Samuel is a wonderful character. He’s smart and brave. When he confides in his two best friends and they join up to help him they make a team I had fun rooting for.

I absolutely loved all the footnotes and scientific information and humor interjected throughout the book.

Footnote #14:
As you can see from his picture, Einstein didn’t take himself too seriously, at least not all of the time. In general, it’s a good idea to avoid people who take themselves too seriously. As individuals, we have only so much seriousness to go round, and people who take themselves very seriously don’t have enough seriousness left over to take other people seriously. Instead they tend to look down on them, and are secretly pleased when they get stuff wrong, because they just prove to the too-serious types that they were right to not to take them seriously to begin with.

This from a later chapter is a good rule for the workplace:
No good ever comes of someone sticking his head round his boss’s door, a worried expression on his face and a piece of paper in one hand that, if it could talk, would shout, very loudly, “Bad! This is bad! Run away now!”

In addition to the human characters there are a variety of demons and creatures from the underworld. I think my favorite character was a not so demonic demon named Nurd.

This is just fun and I want The Hubster to read it soon. I am truly looking forward to reading more of this series.

4.5 stars Rating 4.5/5


Tif Sweeney 1/28/2014 6:20 AM  

This book has been sitting on my shelf unread way too long! I am determined to read this one this year!!

Kailana 1/28/2014 1:58 PM  

This author has been on my radar forever! One day I must read this!

Nicola Mansfield 1/29/2014 4:43 AM  

I absolutely loved this book too! I got the second one right away, but never got to reading it. Must continue on someday. Thanks for reminding me!

Erin 1/29/2014 1:32 PM  

I'm going to have to check your site out more thoroughly! I just reviewed this series (I recently read the 3rd book)- Connolly's one of my favorite writers, and the book you're currently reading, Outlander, is my absolute tops (I'm covering the new STARZ series for this book!) I, too, giggled all the way through, and loved all the footnotes. Enjoy the rest of the series!

SuziQoregon 2/16/2014 8:05 PM  

Tif: Oh it's so fun - hope you read it soon.

Kailana: I think you'd really like it.

Nicola: I plan to get the second one fairly soon. This was just so much fun.

Erin: Oh I'll have to get over and check out your reviews. I'm really looking forward to the Outlander TV series.

Thanks for reading. Feel free to leave a comment. I read and respond them here although not always right away. If you would prefer an email response let me know.

I do moderate comments on posts older than 14 days in order to control spam. I will approve your legitimate comments as soon as I can.

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