Book Review: The Hating Game by Sally Thorne

Debut author Sally Thorne bursts on the scene with a hilarious and sexy workplace comedy all about that thin, fine line between hate and love.

Nemesis (n.) 1) An opponent or rival whom a person cannot best or overcome.
2) A person’s undoing
3) Joshua Templeman

Lucy Hutton has always been certain that the nice girl can get the corner office. She’s charming and accommodating and prides herself on being loved by everyone at Bexley & Gamin. Everyone except for coldly efficient, impeccably attired, physically intimidating Joshua Templeman. And the feeling is mutual.

Trapped in a shared office together 40 (OK, 50 or 60) hours a week, they’ve become entrenched in an addictive, ridiculous never-ending game of one-upmanship. There’s the Staring Game. The Mirror Game. The HR Game. Lucy can’t let Joshua beat her at anything—especially when a huge new promotion goes up for the taking.

If Lucy wins this game, she’ll be Joshua’s boss. If she loses, she’ll resign. So why is she suddenly having steamy dreams about Joshua, and dressing for work like she’s got a hot date? After a perfectly innocent elevator ride ends with an earth shattering kiss, Lucy starts to wonder whether she’s got Joshua Templeman all wrong.

Maybe Lucy Hutton doesn’t hate Joshua Templeman. And maybe, he doesn’t hate her either. Or maybe this is just another game.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange of an honest review. No payments made between me and the publisher.

The Hating Game is the first book I’ve read from Sally Thorne. I accidentally watched the movie but I’m not 100% paying attention. So, I’ve decided to finally read the book and I’m glad that I did I will now compare the movie and the book once I re-watch the movie. First, I liked this book cover it’s simple and catchy and it makes me curious what’s the extent of this game? What actually is the hating game? Didn’t you readers got curious as well?

The book contains amazing characters, I can’t imagine working with someone whom I will actually hate, I don’t like hating people. LOL. Okay, back to my review, Lucy and Joshua is funny together. They tease each other like kids, there’s an old saying, the more you hate the more you love and this book really showed it. They’re cute together and lovely, I’m not sure what more I love, them teasing or being in love? Lucy is a simple woman who plainly wants to achieve her dreams, her family owns a farm and she haven’t visited back home for a while, but Lucy is very close with her parents. Joshua is her colleague who I can say is handsome and tall man. He’s somehow not close with his dad since he didn’t follow the path of being a doctor or a surgeon. His father treats him differently. These two characters Lucy and Josh, they have a lot of differences but, they make the whole story fun their love and hate relationship isn’t something that’s irritating. I love these two!

The book is fun to read and I laughed at some parts of it although, I have a confession, I had a hard time to finish it, I’m probably too busy with work or, just too distracted with every thing around me. Anyhow, I’m glad I did finish the book which I really enjoyed reading. I’m looking forward to read more Sally Thorne books. Any recommendation what to read next?

My Ratings

Sally Thorne is the USA Today bestselling author of the office rom-com The Hating Game (2016). It is her debut novel that has sold in over twenty-five countries and is being made into a major motion picture, directed by Peter Hutchings and starring Lucy Hale and Austin Stowell. Filming wrapped in December 2020. It was named in the top 20 romance novels of 2016 by the Washington Post and was a top ten finalist in the Goodreads Choice Awards romance category. The Hating Game has been cited as a book that has reinvigorated the romantic comedy genre.

Sally’s much anticipated second novel, 99 Percent Mine, was released on 29 January 2019 by William Morrow Books and debuted at #37 on the USA Today Bestseller List.

Source: Goodreads

Birthday Giveaway!

Hello to friends, readers and fellow bloggers! It’s my birth month! So, I have decided to conduct another giveaway. I haven’t done this for a while and I’d love to take this opportunity to give back. This giveaway is open INTERNATIONAL but, make sure that BOOK DEPOSITORY delivers in your country. Also, take note that, there will be delays on delivery once the winner has been chosen, this is due to COVID situation and some deliveries are affected, but rest assured that you’ll receive the book/s.

Giveaway guidelines isn’t hard, all you have to do is follow the rafflecopter instructions. This will end on February 28th and I’d announce the winner to my social media accounts and here on my blog. Without further ado, you may follow this link for the giveaway instructions:

Rafflecopter Giveaway

That’s it!!! Good luck everyone and may you all have an amazing year ahead!

PS. for those who will tweet, you may do that once a day for extra points!

PPS. try to open the links in other browser/s if the Rafflecopter isn’t showing or, you may access via your laptop/PC web browsers

Book Review: The Love Hypothesis by Ali Hazelwood

As a third-year Ph.D. candidate, Olive Smith doesn’t believe in lasting romantic relationships–but her best friend does, and that’s what got her into this situation. Convincing Anh that Olive is dating and well on her way to a happily ever after was always going to take more than hand-wavy Jedi mind tricks: Scientists require proof. So, like any self-respecting biologist, Olive panics and kisses the first man she sees.

That man is none other than Adam Carlsen, a young hotshot professor–and well-known ass. Which is why Olive is positively floored when Stanford’s reigning lab tyrant agrees to keep her charade a secret and be her fake boyfriend. But when a big science conference goes haywire, putting Olive’s career on the Bunsen burner, Adam surprises her again with his unyielding support and even more unyielding… six-pack abs.

Suddenly their little experiment feels dangerously close to combustion. And Olive discovers that the only thing more complicated than a hypothesis on love is putting her own heart under the microscope.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange of an honest review. No payments made between me and the publisher.

I’ve read this book a while back and I’ve been meaning to write a book review but I can’t make myself to. I’m not sure how to express myself on this. The Love Hypothesis is a hype! and all I could say was it was worth it. I end up buying a Book of the Month copy before finishing the other half of the story and I end up reading from the start so I could put the tabs. This book is a fast, enjoyable and funny read. I’d definitely read this again if I got time! And, FYI there’s an Adam POV!

The book is really awesome! I loved every parts of it! But, it’s funny that Olive didn’t realize right away that the guy (Adam) is the guy she already met all those years ago. Olive and Adam is such a perfect match. It’s not everyday you’ll find someone like them, right? It’s fun to see them together. I’d love to read more about them and their love story. Olive is just an overthinker woman and Adam is the guy who put all things together, he’s calm and he understands his assignment well.

Some people thinks the book is too cheesy, or something, but… I think, it’s the kind of book that you’d want to read when you think you need a good romance and a good laugh. This romcom book made me laugh a lot and made me want to read things over and over. I keep telling my friends to read it too! I hope this book gets a book 2 though! It deserves another story with Olive and Adam in it!

My Ratings

I’m Ali, and I write contemporary romcom novels about women in STEM and academia. I love cats, Nutella, and side ponytails. I’m also currently learning to crochet, so as you can tell I’m a super busy gal with an intense and exciting life!

Source: Goodreads

Book Review: In The Wild Light by Jeff Zentner

Life in a small Appalachian town is not easy. Cash lost his mother to an opioid addiction and his Papaw is dying slowly from emphysema. Dodging drug dealers and watching out for his best friend, Delaney, is second nature. He’s been spending his summer mowing lawns while she works at Dairy Queen.

But when Delaney manages to secure both of them full rides to an elite prep school in Connecticut, Cash will have to grapple with his need to protect and love Delaney, and his love for the grandparents who saved him and the town he would have to leave behind

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange of an honest review. No payments made between me and the publisher.

Jeff Zentner is one of the authors that I could say my “automatic read”. It’s just, when they publish a new book, without further ado, I’ll get their book and read it. I don’t even read the blurb, I just know it will be beautiful. In The Wild Light didn’t disappoint. It’s worth reading, it gets me in some way and I can relate. The book actually made me cry in some parts of it. I even tweet and tagged Jeff Zentner about it (sorry not sorry!) I love the book so much and I need the physical copy of it, unfortunately it’s not available locally yet (Philippines, FullyBooked please have more copy?)

Cash and Delaney are solid. They are best friends and they are the type of person who will do anything for their friend. One big opportunity came which took a few convincing but, eventually, both agreed to try and grab it. Despite all the worries and fearful idea, this opportunity is their big shot. Both characters grew differently as the story goes, Cash and Delaney discovered new things like a normal teenager would, and to add up, these two have the world around their shoulders, lifting something heavy and the only people they got for support is each other. Cash is a good man/teenager who lives with his grandparents since his parents died in an accident. He manages his own business (mowing lawns) to help his grandma and save up for school. He’s an adorable kid who worries for his grandpa who’s sick. Cash is like an average kid who befriended a genius girl, Delaney. She’s smart, determined and does things her way. She wanted to become a doctor and save lives of people who needs the most. She made a promise to Cash’s grandpa. Delaney works in Dairy Queen to make ends meet, she has her own family issues and she needed to support herself.

This book inspired me to do all the things that you’re afraid to do. Trust yourself and eventually things will get better. Also, family is a big factor of the life decisions. In the Wild Light is such an amazing book. Once again, Jeff Zentner written an amazing work. I’m not surprised that there are a lot of praise already, it’s worth reading. I’d still get my copy once it’s available to complete my Jeff Zentner collection (I hope there’s signed hardbound too!)

My Ratings

Jeff Zentner lives in Nashville, Tennessee. He came to writing through music, starting his creative life as a guitarist and eventually becoming a songwriter. He’s released five albums and appeared on recordings with Iggy Pop, Nick Cave, Warren Ellis, Thurston Moore, Debbie Harry, Mark Lanegan, and Lydia Lunch, among others.

Now he writes novels for young adults. He became interested in writing for young adults after volunteering at the Tennessee Teen Rock Camp and Southern Girls Rock Camp. As a kid, his parents would take him to the library and drop him off, where he would read until closing time. He worked at various bookstores through high school and college.

He speaks fluent Portuguese, having lived in the Amazon region of Brazil for two years.

Source: Goodreads

July Wrap Up!

It’s a wrappppp!!!!

So far… despite the busy week, I’ve managed to read three books this month! I’m hoping to read more this coming July. I also joined a blog tour and I haven’t done that in ages so it’s fun! Take a look at my R-E-A-D books this month.

This is the book I reviewed and I’ve been part of a book tour. I haven’t read this kind of book in a while, it’s a fantasy book and there’s a lot going on, but in a good way. This book is the second part of the series, two books have been published so far and I’m waiting for the third! I’m sure you’ll like this. Readers can check my book review here.

Nina LaCour didn’t disappoint me!!! I loved this book. I somehow can relate on this, also I thought it’s some kind of a horror type of book but, aahhhh.. nope.. it is something else. Something more deep, entertaining and emotional. I liked this book a lot more than readers can imagine. I’ll recommend for you all to read this.

This book is cute!!! the character is a Swiftie! (I AM TOO!) I could relate on that also, she’s an IT geek (points-to-self). It’s a quick read kind of book. I bet readers will like this as well, I’d love to reread this when I get some time again.

This is not a lot but every books I read were awesome! What’s your JULY wrap up? Let me see! ^_^

Book Review: My Epic Spring Break (Up)

A fun and upbeat paperback original romance about a girl who finds a cheat sheet for love.

Spring break . . . heartache?

For coder extraordinaire Ashley, high school is all about prepping for college. Her love life? Virtually nonexistent. She’s never been on a date. Never been kissed. Never been in love.

When her plans veer off course, Ashley realizes she might be missing out on her high school experience. Now that spring break is finally here, Ashley vows to have fun . . . and, for the first time, follow her heart.

Starting with Walker Beech, her gorgeous, maybe-not-so-unrequited crush. But with Jason Eisler–her childhood friend turned prankster–in the picture, trouble is bound to follow. Will Ashley’s epic spring break lead her to love, or will her heart crash and burn?

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange of an honest review. No payments made between me and the publisher.

I’ve been looking for a book that is a quick read, something that’s entertaining, and uplifting moods, after a few minutes of browsing from my to-be-read (tbr) pile I found this book. I got curious, I don’t usually read an excerpt because I wanted to be surprised about what the book has to offer. Annddd, this book did not disappoint. I got sucked into the story because of two things, coding and Taylor Swift. I’m a swiftie too and I love being one, it connects life stuff sometimes, I just can relate.

My Epic Spring Break (Up), is a good book that I think every high schooler can relate to. It’s love, seeking for adventures, dealing with the future and aiming for what you want before college comes. The characters are just so lovely and I liked the friendships between these characters. They’re just amazing and they never give up on their goals. It’s a bit sad when Ashley had to experience losing but it turns out, that’s just another opportunity for her in a different direction. She’s lucky that she has everyone’s support behind her back, no matter what it takes friends, family are there for her.

The concept of the book is just simply beautiful. I’m sure every reader will love it. It’s simple yet entertaining. And oh… before I forget, Walker Beech, there’s something about him that I am curious about, at the same time I don’t like this guy, he smells trouble. But I’d love to know his side of story (can there be one?!) It’s going to be nice if there’s another book like this, or some other point of view from this book.

“I’ll never give up on my dreams.”

This one is my favorite quote from this book. It inspired me at some point. It’s true, never give up on your dreams no matter how hard that is. It’s always good to have purpose, to have something to look up to and inspire yourself to do more and challenge yourself on achieving those dreams.

My Ratings

Kristin Rockaway is a native New Yorker and recovering corporate software engineer. After working in the IT industry for far too many years, she finally traded the city for the surf and chased her dreams out to Southern California, where she spends her days happily writing stories instead of code. When she’s not working, she enjoys spending time with her husband and son, browsing the aisles of her neighborhood bookstores, and trying to catch up on sleep.

Summer Bucket List 2021

I hear the beach calling for me! Summer is near. I usually enjoy winter, but this one was rough and I’m definitely ready for a new season. 


Summers in Manitoba are hot and humid. sometimes temperatures reach up to 35 C. We go through many fire watch’s, intense storm warnings and even the odd terrifying tornado. But, summers in Manitoba bring the most amazing waves at the beach, and the most beautiful gardens that seem to dance in the suns rays.


My summers are usually very laid back and filled with a lot of time at my parents house swimming. I find my days fly by so fast and I’m not left with as many intentional memories as I’d want. I’m really trying this year to be intentional and purposeful. So, here are 10 things I want to do, visit, see, or experience!


SUMMER 2021
1. Take a walk in a different town.

2. Tie dye some shirts with the kids.

3. Paint and hide rocks.

4. See a waterfall.

5. Paint my toe nails.

6. Watch a sunset.

7. Read in a park.

8. Try swimming in the beach.

9. Take A LOT of photos.

10. Laugh every single day. The uncontrollable kind.


I want this summer to fuel my soul. It’s been a tough year. It’s time for a different season.


What’s on your summer bucket list?

Love Always,

Enn

PAGE LINKS

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December 2020 Book Haul

Hey everyone! I know this is a late post but, I still want to share my book haul last year, December 2020. I pretty much completed the one’s in my list and I don’t have regrets on buying them. I haven’t read all of the books yet because I’m still reading the books I bought prior December.

These are gifts from my friends. I love everything in this photo ^_^
December gifts for myself ‘coz why not? I found the books I’m looking for while we were roaming around the bookstore
I got everything from a book sale!!! It was really a good buy
Everything here will be read and used by next month!!! I’m super excited. More books to read and I got my journal too

So that’s it.. I mostly share my photos at my book Instagram account. You may check that here too: instagram.com/homeofabooklover

I’ll post my January book haul soon too and some book reviews. I have a lot of books to review both e-books and physical books. I can do this!!! *fingers crossed*

What’s your first read for February? Share it will ya? I’d like to check it out too!

Book Feature: Bell Hammers by Lancelot Schaubert

PRANKS. OIL. PROTEST. JOKES BETWEEN NEWLYWEDS.

AND ONE HILARIOUS SIEGE OF A MAJOR CORPORATION.

Remmy grows up with Beth in Bellhammer, Illinois as oil and coal companies rob the land of everything that made it paradise. Under his Grandad, he learns how to properly prank his neighbors, friends, and foes. Beth tries to fix Remmy by taking him to church. Under his Daddy, Remmy starts the Bell Hammer Construction Company, which depends on contracts from Texarco Oil. And Beth argues with him about how to build a better business. Together, Remmy and Beth start to build a great neighborhood of “merry men” carpenters: a paradise of s’mores, porch furniture, newborn babies, and summer trips to Branson where their boys pop the tops off of the neighborhood’s two hundred soda bottles. Their witty banter builds a kind of castle among a growing nostalgia.

Then one of Jim Johnstone’s faulty Texarco oil derricks falls down on their house and poisons their neighborhood’s well.

Poisoned wells escalate to torched dog houses. Torched dog houses escalate to stolen carpentry tools and cancelled contracts. Cancelled contracts escalate to eminent domain. Sick of the attacks from Texaco Oil on his neighborhood, Remmy assembles his merry men:

“We need the world’s greatest prank. One grand glorious jest that’ll bloody the nose of that tyrant. Besides, pranks and jokes don’t got no consequences, right?”


Book Excerpt

WILSON REMUS

1941

Buckass naked in hot, hand-boiled bathtub suds, playing with his tin New York dairy truck and some

Spur Cola bottles, he heard old Rooney’s brakes set to squelching.

“Aww shit.” He was six years old. “Aw shitty shit shit.”

They didn’t have no school buses back then, you see, just one room schoolhouses dotting the countryside like peppercorns tossed sparingly over a pot of boiled taters. And if you weren’t gonna walk five miles to school one way, you’d better get your ass in line for old Rooney’s flatbed truck when it pulled up to your street corner when them brakes squelched out loud.

Remmy jumped up quick as a cat scared by a cucumber and ran out without drying himself. “Rooney! Rooney!” Momma Midge cried after but it was of no use.

It started to go and all of his classmates and Elizabeth too stared at him with suds all down his naked body as he

sprinted across that hot dirt road and it picked up on his feet till the soles went black and he caught the truck just barely and plopped buckass naked on the back with the rest of them.

The other kids stared. One snorted.

Rooney slammed on the brakes with a fresh squelch and craned his head out the window. “The hell, Remmy?”

“The hell, Old Man Rooney?”

“Don’t you the hell me, boy, you’re buckass nekked!” The kids giggled then. Specially Elizabeth.

Remmy blushed a bit. He was naked, but not quite old enough to be ashamed. Not quite. “So?”

“So you can’t go to Sunday school nekked, Remmy!”

“You can’t go to Sunday school without me, Old

Rooney!”

“Well… well you’re nekked though.”

“Well so what? Skin and mind ain’t the same.”

“Don’t get smart with me now. Don’t you start.”

“Honest, Old Man Rooney, I’d rather go to school naked than to stay home covered but dumb.”

Rooney shook his head. “Go put on your britches. I’ll wait.” Remmy scooted off the back of that pickup and got about five feet before he heard the kids pointing and laughing. He looked down — some of the limestone dust in the back of that flatbed had stuck to his butt, and now he had a white ass to offset them black soles. Full white moon and hooves of black. Like a whitetail buck.

But they got him to class, they did. Him and the others. He sat down and tried his best to wink at Beth. He winked and he winked and fidgeted in his chair, the limestone working his buttcheeks like sandpaper.

Beth never did wink back no matter how much work Remmy’d put into winking her way. He’d give anything just to be able to fall asleep in the safety of her older, softer arms and wish the world and its scaffolding and fist fights away. Oh and its hate too, yup. But she didn’t seem fond of that idea, the winking and the kissing and the holding, or even the noticing him, really, busy as she was with her maths.

Maybe she’d seen enough of him for the day, all things in mind.

Remmy’d been in the second grade at the time and learning from Miss Witt in the one-room school. Miss Witt said, “Well it looks like we got six students and four oil people today.”

The children of parents not employed at Texarco laughed and pointed at the rest. The children of oil parents blushed. That included Beth.

“Missing one oil person,” Miss Witt said. “Where’s Jim Johnstone?”

“Probably painting himself black with tar,” Remmy said.

“You quit,” Beth said to Remmy.

Beth being one of them oil people put him in one of them tight spot dilemma problems, it did. Remmy went to school there along with a few other kids, learning his grammars, how to make his thoughts into clean words, but mostly just winking at Beth Donder and hoping she’d wink back.

Fat.

Chance.

She was five years older than him, which made her twelve or something. That combined with his oil people comments made it damned near impossible he’d get a wink out of her. He remembered the news came in on a Sunday morning in the middle of the Sunday school and the winking and her age.

Jim Johnstone came running in hot and sweating like a creek-dipped mink in his winter wear, that look on his face like he had bad news nobody else knew about and he’d only tell you once you begged him good and long to reveal his secrets. Except it must have been extra bad cause he said,

“Miss Witt! Miss Witt! Turn on the radio!” She turned it on.

“—C. Hello NBC. This is KTU in Honolulu, Hawaii. I am speaking from the roof of the Advertiser Publishing Company Building. We have witnessed this morning the distant view a brief full battle of Pearl Harbor and the severe bombing of Pearl Harbor by enemy planes, undoubtedly Japanese. The city of Honolulu has also been attacked and considerable damage done. This battle has been going on for nearly three hours. One of the bombs dropped within fifty feet of our KTU tower. It is no joke. It is a real war. The public of Honolulu has been advised to keep in their homes and away from the Army and Navy. There has been serious fighting going on in the air and the sea. The heavy shooting seems to be—” Static cut off the broadcast. Then the voice went silent. The kids did too.

Remmy didn’t like how quiet it was so he got up and went into the corner of the schoolhouse and dropped his britches — which showed his limestone-white ass — and started peeing in the mop bucket.

Miss Witt shouted, “Good Lord, Remmy, what on earth! Why are you doing that?”

“Cause I got good aim,” he said. “Why else?” The kids laughed.

Remmy turned his aim a bit while they was laughing and sprayed a little on Jim Johnstone’s notebook just cause that boy liked being the bearer of bad news. Miss Witt sent him home early and, though happy that he made the kids laugh instead of thinking about the new war, in later years Remmy would say to me, “I couldn’t believe I did that. I guess I always enjoyed the power of a good prank.”

They had rationing after that. You couldn’t buy sugar or coffee or gasoline or anything without a stamp, which you got from the ration board. It mattered how far you had to drive to work which messed up his Daddy John’s milk jug gathering, since Daddy John had finally saved up enough to ditch the wagon and get a la bumba of a car.

Forced Daddy John to take more time building homes and sheds and things for men in the oil fields. Daddy John wasn’t that close in to begin with, but Remmy hated the government for taking away his dad even further and hated Texarco for keeping him. It took away too his chance of one day having Beth to rock him to sleep safe away from shouting and wars like a good mother, curbing travel like that. See, you had to ride with somebody else wherever you went so you didn’t drive so many cars. If you wore out your tires, you had to get a permit for another one — one at a time instead of a set. Couldn’t get meat, so Remmy’d shoot squirrels and rabbits with his slingshot and cook them, and that’s no lie.

Remmy stole stories from the one room school house — for one, cause they were expensive, books, and for another, cause boys made fun of other boys for reading and so he needed to read in private, and for a third, cause if he didn’t like the book — say it tried to sound smarter than it really was deep down — and if rations got real bad, he could always use the front pages to wipe his ass.

They’d had themselves a farm — a peaceful place out away from the oil fields and out away from the milk driving, where at least one Saturday a month Remmy’d been able to play out in the yard with Daddy John. He missed the smell of that farm — the sweet corn and shitty smell of good fertile soil. But because of the travel curbing, they moved in from the farm. Moved in to the big city: Odin, Illinois. Traffic was awful when you had a twenty-four street town. They sold most of it, his parents and the farm, but they brought a couple pigs along. Them pigs was an anchor for a while, keeping Remmy joined to that heavenly garden on earth. Other people had pig pens in the back. John David — Remmy’s Daddy — raised them so they could have some pork.

When the pig got turned into pork, the anchor was cut loose and he was free floating in Odin. Midge — Remmy’s Momma — kept chickens so they could have those, but they weren’t half the people pigs were. The chicken coops went in the side yard, and those chickens never really settled down either after the move. Remmy got it: foxes everywhere.

Shoes was hard to get all of a sudden. Hell, when he was on the farm he’d loved going barefoot, and as soon as he needed shoes to walk around town on account of moving into town on account of the war, he couldn’t get good shoes also on account of the war, which wasn’t fair no matter how he looked at it. Had to sole them and put heels on them over and over again, wishing he had Moses’ shoes that never wore out. Couldn’t buy hardly anything. So everybody dug in and did what they could do.

They had paper drives. Remmy took his paper around to people’s houses and tied it in bundles and stuck it up on the wagon and sold it, hoping the money would help Daddy John not work so hard and then maybe have some time to the family. Never really worked, though. What’d they sell the paper for? Well for cardboard, for shipping crates for the war. Some of them crates had munitions, stuff for the war. Oh, yeah, they had a pants factory. Pants for the army. Cause you can’t go to war with your horse running loose out of its barn, the other seven-year-olds boys all said. Specially the streakers.

Remmy had to admit that he knew something about that.

Yeah it was the big plant that’d done the bottled cola there, Spur Cola from Bellhammer, Illinois? Remmy watched that plant close one day in the war for the pants and watched them take all of those bottles — just a bunch of them — and he followed them out and saw people dump them into a specific mine shaft. Yeah, that cola plant’d shut down and turned into a place for making pants that kept the horses of the respective army men in their respective barns. That and saltpeter.

Well when they abandoned that coal mine around the same time, everybody dumped their trash down in there, down in the mine. So it seemed right when the time came to do so to lower all those full and sealed Spur Cola bottles down that shaft. Remmy watched them do it just to make room for the pants, and he was just a little boy, so he wasn’t strong enough to go down in there and get them bottles, but he reminded himself of the place: the old railroad, the groundwork of the truck stop, the shoe factory, and the bottle factory near the mine. He did. Because he asked The Good Lord, “Good Lord, will you help me remember this place?”

And The Good Lord said back, “Remmy, I will.

Remember me, Remmy.”

And Remmy said, “Good Lord, I will.”

So Remmy memorized it and The Good Lord both. Some days he’d come back and mark the spot with his toe or a flag made of a stick and a rag or write his name in the dirt there with his piss just to make sure he still knew all them bottles were hid down in there. And one day he’d come back and dig up all those bottles, cause there wasn’t another Spur Cola in the world but in Bellhammer, Illinois, and therefore one day those Spur Cola bottles would be prime rare antiques, and so he’d dig up all of them and sell them one at a time on the big city auction block. A regular old Sotheby’s, yes sir. And then he’d have enough money to buy his Daddy John a vacation for just the two of them in some castle somewhere in Ireland or Germany or Camelot — somewhere where they have those old castles and throw jokes like jesters at all the dumb tyrants around the world. He wanted to build the biggest castle out of the world’s greatest joke. Best part about throwing jokes and pranking tyrants is that there ain’t no consequences for a good joke, and yet they change people’s minds. Kind of like the joke he’d told about the castle he’d built the year before out of the Lincoln Logs in the back of the horse wagon, back when he’d gotten lost and Daddy John had shouted. That was before they’d moved in from the safety of the farm — their Little Egypt castle. Before everything went to hell and they’d treated each other like Bloody Williamson.