Hi everyone! This is my fourth book review (woohoo)! I want to say a huge thank you again to everyone who has checked out this blog and also my YouTube channel. It means so much to know my opinion on books is useful for you all. Anyway. This is my book review on The ‘Testament of Gideon Mack’ by John Robertson. Now, I need to give a little background as to why I chose this book because it’s very different to the books I have been reviewing on here so far. I wanted to try something new, and found myself caught between a long fairy-tale type book, or this one. I am ashamed to admit that the cover swayed me to this one. I know, I know, never judge a book by its cover. But… it was a nice cover. Before I review this book, I want to briefly mention that the story line had SO much potential… and it wasn’t used. This book was… (shudder) boring. Well, it bored me. The reviews on the back call it a classic and one book that is thought provoking and rings so true. All I could think was… “does it?” I didn’t find this book interesting at all! There was such a good story line that just got drowned and wasted in the book.
The blurb reads: ‘For Gideon Mack, faithless minister, unfaithful husband and troubled soul, the existence of God, let alone the Devil, is no more credible than that of ghosts or fairies. Until the day he falls into a gorge and is rescued by someone who might just be Satan himself…’
I give this book 1/5 for how put-down-able it was. 1! So low! But honestly, it was a very hard read. The story is just too slow for me and I never actively thought “Oh I really want to pick up my book and read for a few hours!” It was more like, “Oh… I should probably read for a bit”. Never a good sign. I just felt disappointed. The story has such potential and yet just doesn’t follow through. Maybe I should have had a peek at the inside before I bought the book. Then I may have known that it wasn’t anywhere near as exciting as the blurb makes it out to be.
I give the book 4/5 for characters. I know what you’re thinking… “How can a book be so boring and yet the characters are so good?” Well, if anyone reads this book and works it out, please let me know. The book is pretty much just about Gideon Mack (obviously) and for some unknown reason I really warmed to him! He’s not particularly nice, very disconnected, very not like me, and somehow I really liked him. Robertson writes him well, as I don’t think he’s supposed to be made out to be much of a hero. In fact, at the start of the book, it seems he is quite a bad person. So why did I like him? Not sure. I just did. I wish very much that the story had gone a different, more interesting way, and Gideon could have been one of my favourite characters in a favourite book.
I give the book 3/5 for originality. Yes, the story is disappointing and dull, but it is original. Can’t take that away from it. I mean, has anyone else heard of a book about a corrupt minister who meets the devil? Uh, no. Although the story really did leave me wanting more (and not in the “wow, I can’t put it down” way), I can completely appreciate the cleverness and depth of it.
Overall, I give The Testament of Gideon Mack 2/5. It was a mind-numbing story that just had SO MUCH POTENTIAL (sigh). Although I really can’t appreciate the story, Gideon was great, and I loved the clever way the reader is made to attach to a baddy without realising it. Robertson, I’m very sorry for the harsh critic, but please re-write the book because the story idea is so good!
Thank you all for reading! My next review will be ‘You’re The One That I Want’ by Giovanna Fletcher. Check out my YouTube channel this week for my vlog of this review at: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCUVbkvW7oss6mwjckRTDiLg/videos