Bad Life Decisions: Make Me Read Theodore Beale

Written by Natalie Luhrs

I'm a lifelong geek with a passion for books and social justice.

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May 28, 2015

While I was at Balticon this past weekend, my husband sent me a text message.  It was a picture of a book.  It was horrifying.  It was this:

War in Heaven, Theodore Beale

Reader, I asked him to buy it.

Why, you ask?

So you can help me raise some money for RAINN (or a charity in your country which does the same sort of work).  For every $5 donated to RAINN, I will read and  live tweet one page of this 399 page delight with the hashtag #readingVD. I’ll also re-publish the tweets and add additional commentary by chapter here at Pretty Terrible–those’ll go up as I finish each chapter (there are 29 chapters in the book, as well as a prologue and an author’s note).

However, I’m not going to read any of it until we’ve raised at least $500–and I’d like to raise that by June 11.  If we manage to raise $2,000 I will read the entirety of Theodore Beale’s Eternal Warriors™: The War in Heaven™.

Here’s the back cover copy:

Mariel thought she was the guardian angel of an ordinary boy–until the night an army of fallen angels took an unholy interest in her charge. Overcome by an angel prince of awesome power, Mariel can only watch as an even greater terror descends upon Christopher’s home then vanishes with him.

Christopher had never believed in angels, or even in God, Heaven, or Hell. But he had never imagined an angel like Kaym, with his hard-core style, terrible beauty, and distinctly unangelic disposition. Kaym has important friends and incredible power of his own–power that Christopher can share, if he’ll join their fellowship and take up their crusade.

And Christopher is willing. He’s tired of following all the rules, and being Kaym’s friend comes with some very appealing perks. In fact, once he has wings and the ability to fly, storming the gates of Heaven sounds like a lot of fun. Still, when he discovers his slightly out-of-favor angels are just as happy to be called demons, even Christopher becomes a bit disturbed…

Sounds super-great and awesome, yes? Cannot wait to find out what Kaym’s “hard-core style” is. One can hope it’s a Metallica t-shirt, black jeans, and a mullet.

So how is this going to work?  Pretty simple: make a donation to RAINN for at least $5 and send proof of your donation (along with the amount of your donation) to mercurysalts at pretty-terrible dot com and I’ll update the total amount raised below. If we hit $500 on or before June 11, I’ll start reading.

I’ll even make the first donation myself.

Donations to RAINN: $5,125/$2,000

Okay then! Looks like this thing is HAPPENING.  If you want me to read the entire book, we still need to raise $2,000.  Or, you know, more. More is good, as RAINN does necessary and important work.

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  1. Steve

    And I thought watching Michael Bag movies for charity was quite an undertaking… Will bourbon be involved?

  2. Kari Sperring

    I donated £25 (about $38 at current exchange rates( to Women’s Aid, which does similar work to RAINN here in the UK.
    I hope you get the full $500.

  3. Rafael

    “Awesome power”?

    Really? I get what the word means, but it reads like the writer was stroking his mullet while rocking out to Slayer.

  4. Natalie Luhrs

    @Rafael: Well, to be completely fair to Teddy, he probably didn’t write the back cover copy.

  5. --E

    Heh, I thought you were being sarcastic with the (TM), but I see that is on the cover!


  6. yamamanama

    I read this piece of crap a long time ago, back when it was free.

  7. Beth N.

    This sounds like it will be fun. And your choice of hashtag made me laugh out loud (yes, I am twelve years old).

    I really do hope that the novel goes well beyond the tepid adolescent wish fulfillment promised by the cover copy–well, of course a teenaged boy would be the central focus of a celestial conflict!–and well into a WTFery that would justify the efforts you put into it. Looking forward to your tweets!

  8. Michal

    Air guitar angel!

  9. gary massey

    Wait I enjoyed the series years ago and was actually hoping for the 4th book(never happened). Now is the author a complete wacko, yes but so was L. Ron and he actually had some good work go figure.

  10. Kate

    “… an angel like Kaym, with his hard-core style, terrible beauty, and distinctly unangelic disposition.” He’s a Kpop idol! *rubs hand together* Eeeeexcellent.

    I’m puzzled by the non-standard capitalisation of heaven and hell. (Perhaps it’s appropriate in a fantasy setting?)

  11. Lexin (@mpmrommel)

    I have donated £50 to Women’s Aid in the UK. I think that comes out to about $75. Looking forward to it!

    I read one of Vox Day’s books once…oh, my ears and whiskers!

  12. Tim Lieder

    I was trying to parody the book but it seems parody-proof since how can you make it even more ridiculous than it already is. When paragraphs like –

    Mariel smiled as she watched the boy return to his computer and begin hesitantly typing again. The paper was more than half finished, so she felt this particular battle was well in hand. Another thirty minutes, and Christopher would be free to run downstairs to the PlayStation and play his new football game. Thank God she’d been able to convince Mrs. Lewis that “Bloody Fist of Death” was really not an appropriate game for a teenager. Or anyone, for that matter.

    Are written without shame or irony, I weep for humanity.

    Or at very least I marvel at the publisher who read a chapter on an angel making sure that a teenager did his homework and said “Yes! This! This is what I’m looking for!”

    • Natalie Luhrs

      @ Tim: WordPress agrees, as it marked your comment as spam. Presumably because this writing is about as scintillating as some of the word salad that spammers use. 😀

  13. yamamanama

    Venereal Disease says he’ll be more impressed if you read A Throne of Bones instead.

    He can’t be wrong all the time. My reaction to A Throne of Bones was “zzzzzzzzzzzz.” I’d be impressed too.

  14. yamamanama

    Wait, did Dox Day actually trademark the title?

    • Natalie Luhrs

      Someone did! There was a video game, too.

  15. Ouranosaurus

    Just donated $13.42 Canadian, or $10 of your “American dollars.” Two more pages!


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