Great Reads brings you book reviews on teen books that parents will love from such great young adult authors as Garth Nix, Clare Dunkle, DJ Machale, Stephanie Meyer and many more.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

"Anti-Christ: A Satirical End of Days"

“Anti-Christ: A Satirical End of Days” is one of those novels that you think is going to go one way, and ends up completely surprising you in a good way. Slightly reminiscent of Piers Anthony’s “Intimations of Immortality” series, “Anti-Christ” centers around one Matthew Ford, a college student who is having the worst luck ever and can’t seem to catch a break. Now, to top it all off, after evicting a ghost from his home, ticks off Jesus (who has taken control of Heaven after God had a stroke), and then in his refusal to comply with Jesus’ command that he take the ghost back (apparently it’s the “rule” that only a priest can exorcise a ghost) finds himself the subject of curse after curse. First, it’s horrible acne, then his philosophy professor fails him, he finds himself impotent…and it only gets worse from there. Matthew doesn't take it lying down though, he instead launches an all out personal war, committing crime after crime in Jesus' name.

Matthew then finds himself approached by Satan himself, who paints a very different picture of what we know happened according to the bible, and Matthew starts to listen. Satan wants to help Matthew become someone important, and through Satan’s machinations, Matthew becomes the next big guru, encouraging humanity to turn away from religion and to follow him. But of course, Satan is the Master of Lies, and has his own plans for Matthew and humanity that just won’t end well for most of us.

Matthew’s journey though, really starts after his “death” and that’s really where the book kicks into high gear. Matthew travels through purgatory with a couple of smugglers (seems Jesus’ idea of Heaven is to segregate it and keep the peace through brainwashing of sorts), meets Buddha and discovers his real destiny.

Author Matthew Moses has created a world not much different from our own, and does so with much thought and philosophy. At first, there seems to be much anger, but the ending give humanity hope despite tragedy, and faith in its purest form. Even though the philosophy of the book is smart and thought provoking, I have to admit that one of my favorite parts of the books comes through an exchange with US President “Lucas” and his VP and Chief of Staff:

“Mr. President, things have taken a turn for the worse in Kashmir.”
Lucas looked up to his Vice. “There is a problem in the sweater industry?” He looked back at his Chief. “Will this have major economic impact?”
“Mr. President, I’m talking about India and Pakistan.”
“Oh, Africa,” Lucas nodded. “Go ahead.”
The Chief almost corrected him but instead thought is was a waste of time. “There have been instances of attacks by Indians on Pakistanis in response to the Parliamentary attacks of a few days ago.”
“How in the hell did Indians get to Africa?”

And the exchange continues. I actually laughed out loud and then read it to my husband…all it needed was a strategically placed “strategory”.

I’d definitely recommend this book as a great read- it’ll make you think, laugh and maybe even get angry. My only negative- I wish that the lead had a different name from the author, but that's just me :). It’s available for purchase at, or you can check out for more information. I do not recommend it for kids and would give it an ages 17 + up rating for language and some “adult” situations.

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