The Cupid War by Timothy Carter

Posted by on Jun 30, 2014 in Book Reviews, Ontario | 0 comments

The Cupid WarSummary: When Ricky accidently falls off a bridge after deciding not to kill himself, he’s a little ticked off. In the afterlife he is assigned to become a Cupid, getting trained in the art of making people fall in love so they will be happy. But it’s not all Valentines and yearning looks, instead the Cupids are waging a war against the Suicides; dark, shadowy creatures who attach themselves to people and suck the will to live right out of them with depression and despair. In an unheard of twist, Ricky encounters a live Suicide in a girl named Susan who plagued him in his own life. Realizing that not all the Cupids are on the same page when it comes to defeating the Suicides, Ricky has to stand up to the Cupids in charge to change things, but he might just be in over his head.

Number of Pages: 229

Age Range: 13-15

Review: Reading The Cupid War by Timothy Carter was like watching a video game unfold in my head. Ricky Fallon dies falling off the bridge he was going to jump off before he changes his mind, and afterwards he is assigned to be a cupid, making people fall in love by reaching into their chests and sending love there. The new form Ricky takes is complete with a skin-tight leotard featuring a heart on the chest and the lack of vital male anatomy bits, effectively making him a eunuch.

What follows reminded me of Kingdom Hearts, the Disney video game with the Heartless, only in Carter’s book they are called the Suicides and are responsible for the world’s despair. If they touch you or plague you, chances are your spirit will be so overcome by depression that you will kill yourself. The only way to conquer the Suicides is through love, love being the weapon aimed like a laser blasting them into oblivion. Ricky’s job is to foster new love, but also protect people from the Suicides.

Each couple matched up earns food for the Cupid, the pure substance of Love Ricky says tastes like corn and cheese. While Cupids don’t need to sleep, after encountering Suicides they need to recharge by eating, and in desperate cases by having a mainline of love to renew them.

Ricky seems to adapt to his new life easily in some respects, but when he encounters Susan, the girl who dragged him down into depression going after another guy, he is determined to put an end to it. Things are more complicated than he suspects though, as Susan seems to be a living Suicide who can drag others down at will and is being protected by some of the Cupids themselves. There’s a conspiracy going on, and Ricky is going to get to the bottom of it.

The Cupid War is an easier read and I generally understood what was going on, although I had questions when Ricky began a relationship with Trina, a live girl who could hear and then see the Cupids. At first his main obstacle is vibrating at the same frequency as her so they can kiss, but I’m pretty sure eventually he’s going to miss other things.

Carter prefaces his book by talking about mood disorders, and I think The Cupid War was a fantastical explanation of why some people are dragged down by depression and others aren’t, and how plugging into the “Source,” meaning God, can refresh a person and make life worth living again. It’s a lighter explanation of a serious topic and as a reader I wasn’t quite sure what to make of it.

Memorable Quotes: Unfortunately I was using my Kindle for this title and cannot seem to access my bookmarks. If I end up figuring it out I will add them later.

The Cupid War by Timothy Carter is published by Flux, (2011)

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