Reviews

Mercury Falls, by Robert Kroese

kjbbiddle's review against another edition

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5.0

witty. entertaining. liked the characters and found the story to be pretty original as well.

jianali's review against another edition

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5.0

very funny and well written. I read it in one sitting because I could not put it down!

sticksnstout's review against another edition

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4.0

This book was a lot of fun. It takes what we know of the unknown and twists it around in the most unlikely manner.

esadday's review against another edition

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4.0

Interesting Start to the Series

This is the story of trying to stop the apocalypse. It was amusing and great to listen to while I was cleaning. Mercury, an angel, chose to fall from heaven with the intent of saving the world. In this first book, at least, he succeeds. But that’s not a spoiler. It’s how it all unfolds that is what’s interesting and entertaining.

fenny_42's review against another edition

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4.0

Mercury Falls centers around the coming Armageddon and certain PAIs (Persons of Apocalyptic Interest). The two big main characters are Mercury, a wayward angel who does pretty much what he wants when he wants for reasons only he knows about; and Christine, a journalist working for a reputable newspaper, traveling the USA and writing about end-of-the-world cults and their doomsday predictions. Her boss and owner of The Banner, Harry, has had the lifelong ambition to be the first newspaper to correctly document the pending apocalypse. This is why Christine has been sent to interview most anyone who claims they know the date of Armageddon.

The novel follows Christine’s travels around the US, and eventually to the Middle East, and all the attempts to either support or negate Armageddon made by humans, angels, and demons alike. Her plans go astray when Karl Grissom, a 37-year-old who still lives with his mom, is named the Antichrist by a competition based on a popular young adult series. Hilarity and fast-paced calamity ensue.

Though it took me an insane amount of time to read this book (I started it in early 2012), it was actually pretty enjoyable. Kroese portrays Heaven as a huge bureaucracy that in order to get anything done has to step on so many toes in its other departments that nothing ever gets done. None of the angels really know who “the big guy upstairs” is, where humans go when they die, or what the plan after Armageddon is. Half the fun of the story comes from the fact that disgruntled angels act pretty much like humans.

My favorite character is Mercury himself, the best–and really only–anti-establishment angel out there. I could never really guess his motives or which side he was on, whether it was pro- or anti-Armageddon, as the book calls it. He really throws everyone for a loop when he starts building snowmen instead of ushering in Armageddon like he’s supposed to be doing. Although the plot did move along quickly in this book, it was really the unique characters and creative Heaven that Kroese created (portals, a planeport limbo) that made the book so much fun to read.

Once I got over the initial push, about the first 100 pages, it got interesting and amusing and hard to put down. The contrasts of Christine’s apathy towards religion, Harry’s fanaticism, and Mercury’s mischief of minor miracles make this semi-religious book extremely lighthearted. Once I got into it, Mercury Falls was an easy, quick read. I’d recommend it if you want a humorous look on Armageddon.

jaybirdy's review

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adventurous funny hopeful lighthearted mysterious medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

4.0

cheezvshcrvst's review against another edition

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1.0

Trite, cliche, unoriginal glib. While the conclusion was fun to read, this novel is hardly satisfying. The humor insisted upon itself, the commentary was more pervasive than satirical, and the characters were one-dimensional.

cathepsut's review against another edition

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I don't know why I keep picking up humorous fiction. I rarely find it funny or otherwise interesting. It's just silly. Sorry, error in judgement, not for me.

kateofmind's review against another edition

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4.0

A fine example of Apocalypse slapstick, which is really the only way to treat the eschatological, no?

vittorioseg's review against another edition

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2.0

It was mediocre.

Oh don't get me wrong, for those whose this book is the first one, it would be a laugh. It has witty, it has irony and it has many jokes. But that's like saying that those who have never read high fantasy would find the Belgarath to be groundbreaking. After so many books of Pratchett, Adams, and Aragon (Fimfiction, look it up) this was so very rehearsed and bland I honestly had to put down the book after the joke of "My life is anew, now I'm dead" with the corpse in page... something. I knew what the joke was going to be and then realized that almost all the jokes and witticism was telegraphed because they had been done by other authors over and over again.

This is more like a blueprint of how to create a post-modernism parody of Omen that anything else.

But it would have been great if it wasn't for the protagonist. Christine is annoying. She is annoying because she doesn't have a soul, a character. She is a plot coupon that act as the dialogue and the story demands. She has nothing and is aware of nothing but what she must for the story to continue. I honestly couldn't describe it but "I plucky reporter fed up mess up things because she has nothing better to do" and that seems to be it.

Why does she try to save Carl at the beginning? Because then the story would fall apart. She knows that (at that moment) he is the anti-christ and he could destroy the entire world. She had SEEN the powers that be exist and the revelations are real, yet she drives and saves and keep saving a man that could destroy the world and slaughter untold millions because "she si moral" or some nonsense while at the same time saying she wants to stop the apocalypse. It doesn't make sense. Later she is validated, but at the moment she makes de decision she has no way of knowing that. She decided (like in the cabin in the house) that one life is worth more than all of the humanity and that makes her a monster. At least the angels go the excuse that is another race and they are elementals immortals. Yet she continues to say that she is anti-apocalypse while her actions are counterproductive to that in almost every way and the only reason she acts as a heroine is because the world bends backward to make her right.

Its annoying. Her reasoning doesn't look like she is intelligent but that the author is spoon feeding her the answers. In many ways, she is far worse than Carl yet we are supposed to root for her.

And Mercury happens to know everybody and do everything and it's jarring. Honestly, I don't get Mercury. Not as an angel or as an unmotivated worker, but in why he is so competent? Why he is so capable when everybody is literally drones?

So this is a bland novel that tries to be deep but it fails miserable. It doesn't say anything new, doesn't have an interesting premise and the characters are barely constructed.

But if you are new into this settings, this is a great way to start. Is light, is inoffensive and it doesn't force to anything too hard that it could not be enjoyable for a, say airport wait or when you need to rest for other readings.