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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Unforgettable!, 13 Sep 2008
By 
This review is from: Bad Faith (Paperback)
Be warned that when you start this book you'll not be able to put it down! Crammed with a host of memorable characters, a plot that is completely - and all too horribly - believeable, and enough twists and turns to keep you on the edge of your seat, this is a veritable tour de force from a writer I fully expect to - and if there's any justice in the publishing world she most certainly should - win a host of prizes.
Cass and Ming will live in your memory for a very long time, as you laugh with them, cry with them, and battle the forces of The One Church with them.
Tremendous!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Don't pick it up if you're short of time, 13 Sep 2008
By 
Ms. Rowena M. Love (Ayrshire, Scotland) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Bad Faith (Paperback)
This is not a book to lift and lay. The minute you start reading you're gripped by the characters and what is happening to them and are desperate to read on to find what happens to them.

Organised religion, fundamentalism, politics, violent death - not exactly easy subjects, but Gillian Philip's deft handling makes it anything but a difficult read. This would be a fundamentally great book for school book groups (or ones elsewhere, for that matter!) as there is so much to discuss.

I agree with a previous reviewer to say that it's only a matter of time before this book scoops some major prizes.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Astoundingly good, 29 Aug 2008
This review is from: Bad Faith (Paperback)
BAD FAITH is ASTONISHINGLY good. Think Orwell's 1984 with black humour. It's easy TO read but it's not an EASY read. It covers religion, politics, nationalism, crime, parental and teenage angst, relationships, hidden secrets...something for everyone. It's essentially a very dark novel dealing with big issues, but it's written with such a light touch that you actually find yourself sniggering in several parts.

If BAD FAITH doesn't make it onto the shortlists for several prizes then I don't know what will. It certainly gets my vote.

Also worth looking at Spider.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful, 15 Sep 2008
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This review is from: Bad Faith (Paperback)
The previous reviews have said it all. This is a wonderful, satisfying, COMPLETE book. Nothing is wasted, the narrator is so sympathetic and we feel every joy and every pain with her, the socio-political context is drawn with apparent artlessness and simplicity and yet its force is overwhelming. This story has passion, power, tenderness - everything. If there's any justice, it's a must for any self-respecting prize lists.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not just for teenagers, 29 Sep 2008
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This review is from: Bad Faith (Paperback)
BAD FAITH is a page-turning mix of genres: fantasy, political thriller, murder mystery and - touchingly - teenage love story. Gillian Philip shows herself to be mistress of all these in this ambitious novel that tackles big issues without ever getting preachy. Readers of all ages will find it hard to put down. A beautifully written, gripping and complex read. Give three cheers - a star writer is born.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Unputdownable!, 18 Sep 2008
By 
This review is from: Bad Faith (Paperback)
Schedule a good chunk of time for this novel because I can guarantee that whatever your age, you will not be able to put it down. Bad Faith is a murder mystery, but much, much more. Philip paints a vivid picture of an three young people: Cass (who narrates the tale) her boyfriend Ming and her brother Griff, living in a distopian future but one that is created with such a deft touch that the reader is transported instantly into the world of the story. Philip manages to combine lyrical writing, believable characters and real dialogue, with a breathtaking switchback of a plot, by turns funny, moving and terrifying, that will have you reading on the edge of your seat. I was torn between envy of such style, and total involvement. It will carry you along to the end and have you hoping for a sequel!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Complex, dark and compelling dystopia, 28 Jan 2010
By 
This review is from: Bad Faith (Paperback)
Bad Faith is an interesting title for a book. Before I had even started reading I was asking myself: "Can faith ever be a bad thing?" We all need to have faith in ourselves to reach our potential. We all need to have faith in the goodness of humanity. We put our faith in people everyday to achieve the smallest of things and the biggest of things. I guess my answer was No. Faith cannot be a bad thing. Now I've read Bad Faith. I guess you want to know if I believe there is such a thing as bad faith. Honestly? I don't know. In the context of this book my interpretation is that it faith is what you make of it. It has the potential for good and bad.

Cass lives in a world not unlike ours. It may even be ours some time in the future. Religious diversity has been eradicated and replaced by the One Church. People of other faiths have been persecuted or fled into exile. In many ways I didn't fully come to understand how this process of rebranding and monopolisation by the One Church took place in Cassandra's world. I think perhaps that is because as the teller of this dark, complex tale Cassandra wasn't sure herself. Atheists and secularists are depised by the general community but below even them in the social hierarcy are the apostates. Those that have lost their faith and face complete and open discrimination by the popular mass. Cassandra's father is a cleric for the One Church and their family appears to be shielded from the dangers of persecution and intimidation. At the beginning of the novel her brother Griffin is more polictically aware and angry about the injustices in their society. Her parents try to encourage him to silence his political voice. Cassandra doesn't understand the mysterious uncurrents running through her home. The novel explores the destruction of her innocence as much as the frightening dystopian landscape in which she lives.

Cassandra's voice immediately pulled me into the story. It was highly engaging and in some ways quite endearing. I connected with her from the very beginning. Throughout the story, she confronts painful truths and seeks to uncover the dark secrets weaving through her family's past. Cass has her own dreadful truth and lies to balance in her mind too. The book is complex both in terms of story and emotion. There were times when I felt physically repelled by the decriptions of corpses but I just had to keep reading. At other times I was on the brink of tears.

The plot like Cassandra's emotions weaves an intricate pattern which does require close attention. But the novel is worth the effort on the part of the reader because I was transported into Cassandra's repulsive world. I felt that I had experienced these events first hand. Philip should be congratulated on her skill at making this story feel so real. At one point in the novel I actually felt like my heart would explode with the twist in the plot. I also loved the fact that the most harrowing parts of the story are followed by tender moments in Cassandra and Ming's relationship. It gave some much needed relief and moments of hope to what could have otherwise been an entirely disturbing novel.

Overall, Bad Faith is one of the most powerful dystopian novels that I have ever read. It challenged me to consider the meaning of faith and all its different forms. I congratulate Philip on a superb ending which completely swept me away. If you love dystopians novels, then this will be a sure-fire hit with you. A complex, compelling and incredibly powerful read.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely brilliant!, 21 May 2009
By 
Jenny, Wondrous Reads (UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Bad Faith (Paperback)
If I had to describe Bad Faith in three words, I would say it's unusual, clever and original. Gillian Philip has managed to create a brilliant plot, which reads as a thriller crossed with urban realism.

Cass and Ming are very well written characters, and I liked them both equally. Their relationship was realisic and easy to identify with, which made them that much more likeable. The secondary characters were also a big part of the book, and were all written with depth and personality.

The inclusion of humour was a surprise to me, as I didn't think it sounded like the kind of book that would be funny. The author has a real knack for writing dialogue, and I think this is the main reason the book was so easy to read. It flowed easily, and never seemed to lull or slow down.

The plot itself occasionally reminded me of an episode of CSI or Bones, which is a good thing. With almost every chapter, my hunches and expectations were proved wrong, and the final conclusion was shocking and unexpected. My only complaint would be that I sometimes got confused with all the religious groups and militias, though I think that is probably down to my own thin knowledge on the subject, and not a reflection on the writing or story.

I didn't know what to expect from this book when I received it, but I'm so glad I gave it a chance and read it. It's much better than the summary makes it sound, and I really enjoyed it.

4.5/5
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gripping and chilling, 3 July 2011
By 
Rebecca Brown (Stockton, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Bad Faith (Paperback)
I expected to enjoy this, and Bad Faith didn't let me down. Once again Gillian Philip creates the most vivid, REAL characters and gives them a story that you don't want to stop reading. Bad Faith is the perfect novel for teenagers who love an edgy crime story but will be enjoyed by adults just as much. More than that, however, it's an enthralling picture of badly society can turn out. Highly recommended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bad Faith, brilliant story, 2 Aug 2010
This review is from: Bad Faith (Paperback)
It is hard enough being a teenager, but when the country in which you live has been taken over by the One Church and your unsuitable boyfriend is the son of infidels, things become even more difficult. And then try adding in a dead body and family secrets of the very worst kind.
Gillian Philip's book kept me engrossed, I believed in her teenagers and their families, I believed in the religious gangs and the corrupt One Church leaders, and loved the black humour that ran through the book.
They say that the Devil has the best tunes; I'm beginning to think that teenagers have the best books....
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Bad Faith
Bad Faith by Gillian Philip (Paperback - 20 Aug 2008)
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