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Search tags: Jacob-M.-Appel
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review 2018-04-10 16:10
The Amazing Mr. Morality
The Amazing Mr. Morality - Jacob M. Appel

Appel's stories are always quirky, fun and imaginative. In my opinion though these were not his best. It felt like there was something missing from most of these stories to make them truly stand out and be great. The big reason I chose to read this was because of the woodchuck on the cover. A failed television producer wants the woodchuck in his yard gone, so he has it relocated only for it to send him written letters begging to come back. I did enjoy that one as well as the long story at the end in which the title of this collection comes from. In it two ethicists writing for rival newspaper columns answer questions such as 'If you’re going to commit a murder, is it worse to kill when the victim is sleeping or awake?' I'll definitely be keeping my eyes open for more from this author.

Thank you to Netgalley and Vandalia Press for an ARC.

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review 2017-11-20 15:54
The Liars' Asylum
The Liars' Asylum - Gilbert Allen;Terry Dubow;Valerie Fioravanti;M.S. Allen;Jacob M. Appel;Kathleen Toomey Jabs;Tom Juvik;Amina Gautier;Nick Healy

This is a collection of eight short stories. Each one is solid and thought-provoking. They're tales about the frustrations of romantic love. For me, nothing seemed to be missing from any of the stories. I really liked "Prisoners of the Multiverse" which tells the tale of a suicidal physicist and his top student, and "The Summer of Interrogatory Subversion" which is about a young girl turning eighteen and her mother renting out their basement to a graduate student who looked like a medieval shepherd and who was deemed creepy by the girl's best friend.

Thank you to Netgalley and Black Lawrence Press for a copy of this book.

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review 2017-11-07 23:55
An okay read
Millard Salter's Last Day - Gilbert Allen;Terry Dubow;Valerie Fioravanti;M.S. Allen;Jacob M. Appel;Kathleen Toomey Jabs;Tom Juvik;Amina Gautier;Nick Healy

The blurb for this one does a good job of summing up the premise, although some things are a bit misleading. As a psychiatrist, our main character does have an up close and personal viewpoint on the affects that aging can have on the mind and body, and like most of us, he doesn't want to go through that or be a burden. He takes it a step further and decides to end his life before the inevitable happens. 

While the book is well-written, and at times humorous, I had a hard time connecting to this character. The story also requires a bit of a suspension of belief on some of things that happened as well as the possibility that all of it happened in the span of one day. I did continue reading, mostly because I kept expecting someone or something to stop the intended suicide and I did have some curiosity about that aspect. I won't give that part away, but I will say that with so many distracting side-stories and a character that I found less than engaging, this one was just too easy to set aside for later. I didn't find that compelling aspect in a story that makes you want to read just one more chapter before turning out the light, making this one just an okay read for me. 

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text 2017-10-31 12:19
#PROMOTIONAL_POST - The Mask of Sanity by Jacob M. Appel
The Mask of Sanity - Jacob M. Appel

On the outside, Dr. Jeremy Balint is a pillar of the community: the youngest division chief at his hospital, a model son to his elderly parents, fiercely devoted to his wife and two young daughters. On the inside, Dr. Jeremy Balint is a high-functioning sociopath—a man who truly believes himself to stand above the ethical norms of society. As long as life treats him well, Balint has no cause to harm others.When life treats him poorly, he reveals the depths of his cold-blooded depravity.

At a cultural moment when the media bombards us with images of so-called “sociopaths” who strive for good and criminals redeemed by repentance, The Mask of Sanity offers an antidote to implausible tales of “evil gone right.” In contrast to fictional predecessors like Dostoyevsky’s Raskolnikov and Camus’s Mersault, Dr. Balint is a man who already “has it all”—and will do everything in his power, no matter how immoral, to keep what he has.


Source: archaeolibrarianologist.blogspot.de/2017/10/promotionalpost-mask-of-sanity-by-jacob.html
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review 2017-09-03 08:02
What is Hiding Behind Your Mask?
The Mask of Sanity - Jacob M. Appel

Another fantastic read from Jacob Appel!! The author, enlisting his vast knowledge of psychology, not only created a convincing character as the serial killer, but also took readers into the murderer’s authentic and methodical plotting and preparations of his ‘kill-plans’. I have not rooted for a killer this intensely since Dexter!
The title, borrowed from the book written by the psychologist, Hervey M. Cleckley, is definitely the best name that could have been given to this book! Many people have their true selves that are hidden and have their ‘masks’ which they show to the public. Often, it is more pleasant to deal with the ‘masks’! This was most certainly the case with this book’s antagonist!
While reading this book, I kept thinking how it was going to end. I kept hoping that it wouldn’t end a certain way, then the story would shift and I hoped it wouldn’t end a different way. I had this battle with myself for the last third of the book. True to his form, Appel did not disappoint; he supplied none of the endings of which I had imagined. The ending was absolutely not expected, and certainly was a perfect choice!

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