I received a free copy of this book for honest review.
This one has been a struggle.
The read, writing the review, all of it. I am usually up for a challenge, but life stuff has left me pretty drained. Nevertheless, here we go.
Good Sex, Great Prayers follows the trials of Father Johnstone, minister of the town of Pratt, who feels he is being influenced by demons. But before we get to him (and intermittently going forward) we have to get through the adventures of Some Guy whose twisted, brutal experiments with sex workers leave me nauseated and depressed. I applaud the author for delaying the reveal of the cause of Johnstone’s erratic behaviour (impatience with his congregation, lusting after Madeline Paige, the new girl in town) as well as the connection with him and the antagonist; it’s great for the dramatic tension. But the subject matter of both plotlines is really hard to get through until the point (about a third of the way in) where things start coming together and Johnstone gets some answers. From there it’s a more enjoyable read.
Johnstone is a pretty good protagonist. I like that, once supernatural elements are introduced to him, he struggles to reconcile them with his religion. He doesn’t run screaming, but has an ongoing internal debate about what it all means. And his little dog, Mary — like in The Atheist’s Prayer, I just love the dog. Maybe I should seek out some dog-centric literature to read next. Maybe there’s a Mary/Chuck Norris team-up out there!
Madeline Paige is interesting. I don’t want to reveal too much about her, but her dynamic with Johnstone is pretty awesome.
Billy Burke (The Truck Stop Preacher!) and Some Guy are… bleh. They’re fittingly detestable as villains (my swipe keyboard tried to auto-correct that to ‘violations,’ and I couldn’t agree more) but the sheer amount and detail of sexual violence made my skin crawl. I found large amounts of the book to be a viscerally unpleasant experience.
Which isn’t to say it isn’t worth the read. But to be explicit, I had a lot of trouble moving past a lot of spots in this book. There’s a philosophical and spiritual thread in there that intrigues; but you get graphic brutality along with it.
About the Book – About the Author – Prizes!!!
Welcome to another exciting publishing house spotlight tour from Novel Publicity. Join us as three new titles from Perfect Edge–we’re calling them the Perfect Edge Trinity—tour the blogosphere in a way that just can’t be ignored. And, hey, we’ve got prizes!
About the prizes: Who doesn’t love prizes? You could win either of two $25 Amazon gift cards, an autographed copy of Good Sex, Great Prayers by Brandon Tietz, or an autographed copy of its tour mates, The Atheist’s Prayer by Amy R. Biddle and Subliminal Messiah by Anthony David Jacques. Here’s what you need to do…
- Enter the Rafflecopter contest
- Leave a comment on my blog
That’s it! One random commenter during this tour will win a $25 gift card. Visit more blogs for more chances to win–the full list of participating bloggers can be found HERE. The other $25 gift card and the 3 autographed books will be given out via Rafflecopter. You can find the contest entry form linked below or on the official Perfect Edge Trinity tour page via Novel Publicity. Good luck!
About the book: Pratt has fallen upon strange times. Father Johnstone, who’s served at the helm for the past thirty years, has begun to lose his flock. He dispenses poor marital advice and indulges in the company of lusting widows, both of which he can hardly remember doing. The pastor has never felt more unlike himself, and Madeline Paige—the town’s newest resident—believes she knows the reason. What she reveals will compromise everything Father Johnstone has ever known. Meanwhile, two men beyond Pratt’s county lines administer their own brand of faith. Billy Burke, the truck-stop preacher, tours the Bible Belt advising blue-collar workers how to properly assault a meth-hooker and the best way to protest gay nightclubs. He’s destined to meet a man that’s been operating out of Las Vegas under many different names, experimenting on a myriad of escorts using Christian lingerie, pious role-play, and Biblical paraphernalia. Together, they will push the threshold, and the town of Pratt will serve as the battleground for when faiths clash and lives hang in the balance.
Get Good Sex, Great Prayers through Amazon or Barnes & Noble.
About the author: Brandon Tietz is the author of Out of Touch and Good Sex, Great Prayers. His short stories have been widely published, appearing in Warmed and Bound, Amsterdamned If You Do, Spark (vol. II), and Burnt Tongues, the Chuck Palahniuk anthology. He’s also a columnist at LitReactor.com.
Connect with Brandon on his website, Facebook, Twitter,or GoodReads..
Perfect Edge Books was founded in late 2011 to unite authors whose books weren’t “obviously” commercial. Our books tend to sit in various genres all at once: literary fiction, satire, neo-noir, sci-fi, experimental prose. We believe that literary doesn’t have to mean difficult, and that difficult doesn’t just mean pointless. We prefer to cultivate a word-of-mouth approach to marketing, and keep production as simple as we can. Learn more at www.PerfectEdgeBooks.com.
Learn more about Good Sex, Great Prayers‘s tour mates HERE.