Monday, October 25, 2010

Book Review: Mr. Monster

Dan Wells's new release, Mr. Monster is a perfect read for the Halloween season. You'll be scared, creeped out, and entertained with a story that's hard to put down. I enjoyed his first book in the John Cleaver series, I am not a Serial Killer. Dan Wells did a great job in maintaining the same "edge of your seat" story with Mr. Monster, taking his readers to an even higher level of horror, without being disgusting.
Teenager, John Cleaver, is battling to keep a part of him suppressed, a part that thinks about things that serial killers would. When he discovers that he has feelings for Brooke, and she reciprocates, he discovers that perhaps he can keep Mr. Monster in check, and that he is not the creep he had always imagined people thought he was. But another serial killer has brutalized John's small town. He is obsessed with learning more about the case--mostly in an effort to make sure that his role in murding the first serial killer, who happened to be non-human demon, does not become known. He is taken prisoner by this new killer and discovers that it is another demon. The demon has imprisoned several women in a discusting, barricaded house, where he keeps them chained up as his "toys." John is able to rise above his Mr. Monster tendancies and is instrumental in destroying this demon as well.
This book would probably never make it into Deseret Book, even though Dan Wells is a local LDS author. It's not a G-rated book, but it's not R-rated either. My fourteen year old daughter read it and loved it, and I had no problem letting her read it. It's in the horror genre. What do you expect, Ernest Scared Stupid?

Sunday, October 17, 2010

The Making of Something Different: the F.A.I.T.H. Fund

Yes, I'm a little late in posting my Mid-month Make something Madness entry. That's because I've been busy making something--a charity. Need propted the idea. I wanted to involved the primary children of my ward in our ward temple month. The difficulty of attending the temple of the native people of the Marshall Islands was also brought to my attention. Thus I created a way to involve the primary children  in a fund-raising project to send Pacific islanders to the temple. The name of the non-profit charity is Faith Fund. F.A.I.T.H. standing for Fly An Islander To Heaven.
The kids ate up the opportunity like ice cream. They are working hard, and I do not doubt that they will accomplish the goals we set in our first meeting.

In the meantime I have discovered that I did not need to organize a non-profit charity association with the IRS after all. A similar fund already existed in the LDS church. I didn't know about it when I jumped into the project. My bishop didn't even know about it. In fact, that was part of the reason he gave me so that I couldn't undertake this project through the ward. He said there wasn't a place for it on the tithing slip, and thus for accounting and tax purposes he couldn't give me the O.K. Also the church discouraged us to do any kind of fund raising. But because I felt strongly I needed to undertake this project, I proceeded on my own, establishing my own charity with the IRS.
When I heard about the temple assistence program a few days ago, I was bummed. I didn't need to set up the Faith Fund. But I realized it will be more motivating for the children to have their efforts go to specific individuals rather than going into a big slush pile to be distrubted to unknown people via lots of red tape. They will be able to see a picture of the people they helped send to the temple, as well as hear their stories, etc. The project is still worthwile and I am not sorry for having created it.

For more information on operation F.A.I.T.H., check out my blog,