Book Review: In the Image of Man by Mark Long
A humorously written satire about human nature and our belief in religion.
I absolutely loved In the Image of Man. Fun, quirky and easy to read, this novel was a pleasure to read at the end of a long day.
The first few pages jumped very quickly between point-of-views and scenes leaving little time to build an affinity with the characters, but then the omniscient narrator found his voice. I pictured him as a crotchety old man in a bar telling tales over his pint — and boy was I listening!
Once I was introduced to Bob, a hungry godling looking for belief, I was hooked. The story quickly settled into a strong cast of personable main characters that made me sorry to see the book end (but happy to know there is a sequel coming).
The author’s sharp wit had me in stitches as he took me an on a journey observing and trying to decipher the oddities of humanity, as Bob amassed a small following of believers in the Church of Bob. No spoilers, but the characterizations and insight into what makes someone put their faith in a religion or a god, and what society shuns as outlandish or even mentally ill, made me reconsider what I take at face value and accept as fact.
A fantastic debut novel, Long should be proud of the plot and engaging characters. The wording was simple and clear, and I believe the author will further develop his voice and style with the second book in the series, Afterlife, which is on my must-read list!
Overall, I recommend this book to those who like their science fiction and fantasy rooted in reality such that the story doesn’t cross too far over the line of believability. A unique story with a fantastic blend of humor, satire, and metaphysical and visionary prose, the novel was unconventional, hilarious and thought-provoking at the same time. And who’s to say there's not a spark flying around my toaster just waiting for someone to believe in it?