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3 out of 4 stars
Review by James Craft
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This was a wholly unique book in some ways. The descriptions of characters and ideas were often very interesting in how they were described. For example, the woman Joe loved was called his ‘woman of the Euphrates’ throughout the beginning of the story and the author constantly refers to the Essence, or his Essence. The Essence occasionally gets caught in a blender and grinded up during scenes that are emotional and heart wrenching for Joe. Certain parts of the book felt abstract at times, and the author created some clever and interesting ways of symbolizing how Joe felt during different situations.
In addition to the abstract descriptions of emotion, there were certain depictions of events throughout the book that were handled with casual brilliance. For example, there is a scene in which Joe is talking to his lover about how he only has a few things to finish before they can leave for Paris and get married. She questions his decision, but he deals with a Quarry in front of her and reinforces their desire to achieve this goal before moving on. The most meaningful part of this section is afterwards when Joe goes off and interacts with many other partiers. Eventually we come to this line in the story: ‘He staggered off as far as the rail might take him. He trusted it. The thing seemed loyal, like a pet wolf.’ Such descriptions and alliterations in this story are always well-crafted and it is clear the author put a lot of care into crafting these moments.
However, the book was not without problems: one of the weakest aspects of the entire work was the formatting. For example, everything is left-aligned rather than justified, and the indentation at the beginning of new sections and chapters was incorrect. There should have been no indentation to start new sections. Also, each chapter began with a partial line of all-caps which felt entirely unnecessary. These mistakes had a compounding effect that made this feel less like a novel and more like a college term paper at various points.
That being said, even though the presentation was lacking, the story was not. The Weapon of My Delusion by Ambrose Vendetto Bruno was a fun and interesting read and it earns a 3 out of 4 star rating for trying to do something new and creative. The author had a very tongue-in-cheek way of writing that really brought the story to life, and certain characters like Nadine helped counterbalance Joe. This book broke a lot of molds and was very clever even though certain parts of the execution were lacking. All in all, I think that anyone who enjoys stories that tell a dramatic series of events but with a lot of humor and crazy moments mixed in will really love this book.
The Weapon of My Delusion
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