Is This The Worst Book Ever?: 'Moon People'

Is This The Worst Book Ever?

“Moon People has reshaped my literary perceptions."Goodreads reviewer Neil

What I’m going to do before telling you about the epic stinker "Moon People" by Dale M. Courtney is issue a blanket sic statement for the duration of this article. I think that’s important to say before we move forward. Anyway, this is how chapter one of Moon People by Dale M. Courtney opens (source):

This story begins on a Beautiful sunny day in Daytona Beach Florida With a man by the name of David Braymer. A 45-year-old Single man that works at the local High school as a science teacher and astrology in the 12-grade level. Now he’s been here about 5 years and has become kind of partial to a young lady by the name of Cheral Baskel a local restaurant owner in Daytona Beach. At the moment Cheral’s preparing her restaurant for another Shuttle launch at the cape and everyone always gathers at her place because you can see the launch real good at her place. It’s also on the water and its real close to the cape and she really decks the place out.

You probably have questions. That’s understandable. The wonder of "Moon People" is so great, its folly so staggering, that it jams a reader’s ordinary thought process onto a weird separate track that the brain was never meant to use (also sometimes called an “aneurysm”). It’s only through a careful construction of its pieces that we begin to understand the magnitude of what Courtney has created.

And that’s what makes "Moon People" worse than previous claimants to the Worst Book Ever crown ("How to Avoid Huge Ships," "Dildo Cay," "Microwave for One")–its terribleness extends the way a far-reaching, deep-down conspiracy reaches.

So, let’s start at the beginning. and work our way down the rabbit hole. This is the big kahuna.

"Moon People" is a self-published book from Xlibris released in 2008. (It’s important to note that if you type “xlibris” into google, the fourth suggestion is “xblibris scam”, not to mention that a whole bunch of not-nice things get tossed Xlibris’s way online.) It’s a galactic adventure story with a romance thread to boot. It follows David Braymer, who goes from school teacher to outer-space hero (don’t ask how that transition happens) while stationed on Lunar Base 3, where he finds himself in the middle of the aeons-old war between the benign extraterrestrial Powleens and their malignant enemies, the Arcons.

At least that’s how Courtney describes the book in his strange and endearing letter to readers (that closes with Courtney thanking the reader for his time and saying “may God bless your life.”) that prefaces the book. In this letter, he describes parts of the book in great detail while simultaneously leaving gaping sense gaps. He’s particularly interested in telling you about the Lunar Bases:

They are two miles long and one mile in diameter. They also have one very big surprise. All three ships split into three independent working sections. In addition, all three sections have lasers and rockets and their own engine. They also have shields that are a liquid that turns into a solid mass as hard as 4 inches of steel. When exposed to the cold of space. They also have a couple of lounges where everyone goes for fun.

The prose astounds. It is something to be studied (I’m sure you have, but if you haven’t, click the “Look Inside” link on Amazon for the book). Sentences start, seem like they’re going somewhere, but then dead end, calling to my mind The Escalator to Nowhere from The Simpsons. It’s a grammatical train wreck, but somehow Courtney’s spelling is fairly impeccable. At times, it seems like the prose is sniffing around the general area of coherence, only to plunge into complete nonsense (“they woke up starring at each other with a big smile on each other faces”), sort of like the way you would if you had to ad-lib a presentation about dinosaurs, knowing only what you knew about dinosaurs from elementary school. It’s the quarter-competent storytelling going on here that makes the reader’s brain itch, basically having the same effect as “If it wasn’t for my horse, I wouldn’t have spent that year in college.”

But maybe that’s just me, maybe I’m just a rube, because Moon People has A LOT of fans. On Amazon, you’ll find some of the most adoring Courtneyites around. Here are a few:

Sloat Fresno:

This is a book. And Also its a Good book, one to read. The auther who goes by the Name of Daryl M. Corteney really has a nack for Good science Fiction telling. Also the Story.

Now I dont want too Give to much away. In my review, So your going to have to. Read, the Book you’re self. But serve ice it to Say, your going to Read some things here. That you really did’nt expect. I Took one star Off for being Short and Singlespaced. But hey.

Suzanne C:

If you’ve seen my other reviews you know that I have read most of the so-called “great” “writers” from Herbert Melvile (“Moby Dick”) to Charlie Dickens (“Tales of the Two Cities”) to Michael Cricten (“Jurrasic Park”). Some were really good (hint: the one with dinosaurs) and some were not vary good (hint: most of the rest) but Today they all met their match in this Book, The Moon People!

Heres the problem with all these supposebly great authors — none of them writes the way Regular People talk and write on the Internet. But! now along comes a book that not only does that but also solves the other big problems with literater.

Problem #1 – They dont write like normal people (I said this already)Problem #2 – They sometimes write futureistic science fiction that is set in the mid-eighties WHICH IS NOT THE FUTURE. (Looking at you Orwell)Problem #3 – They often spend pages and pages of teh book without Getting to the Point and telling you what the Book is going to be about.

Just read the opening couple of paragraphs and you will be sold on The MOON PEOPLE. This is a story about a guy who is a science teacher and astrology AND also he was a Government U.F.O. scientist. There is a love interest (Cheral). There is a shuttle launch coming up in only 2 days! There is something mysterious, because it’s Halloween. There have been Mysterious Events.

All of that is revealed on PAGE ONE!! Take note, Melvile — you didnt even mention the whale in your story in like the first 600 pages. This guy put all that on the first page and also titeled his book “The Moon People” so you know where were going with this one.

I wish there was a SIX STAR rating because! The Moon People is JSUT THAT GOOD!

FIVE STARS! I cant wait for the Movie and also for the sequel, Moon People 2: Revenge of the Moon People!


I have to say that I’m disappointed. Thought this was an instructional manual. Now I’m $15.99 lighter and I still don’t know how to moon people.

And if you think we’ve hit the bottom of the rabbit hole, brace yourself: "Moon People" has TWO sequels. Two! Not even Charlie Dickens himself could manage two sequels to Tales of the Two Cities.

"Moon People 2: Mars Reborn" was published in January 2009, and in case you were wondering if Courtney’s “style” changed, it didn’t. In this book, Captain David Braymer heads to the Red Planet, and has also apparently dropped his last lover Cheral for Lieutenant Heather Courtney, which I’ll let you figure out where that name comes from. In Moon People 2, “They have a few out of the ordinary experiences that they do not forget any time soon,” and encounter Martians that “have special mental powers like telekinetic and telekinesis and all sorts of mental telepathy powers like mind transference and the power to levitate in the air.” And, according to the book description, “Well everything was going pretty smooth until Galactic war breaks out all over the universe and the final Battle happens in our solar system,” and “If you think all of this sounds good wait till you read the book, its action packed from start to finish.”

The question you’re probably asking is: does Moon People 2 live up to its predecessor? Well, this review should give you your answer:

David Newton:

First of I’ll warn the reader’s that this book has four less page’s than the first Moon People book. So if your looking for the same number of page’s you can maybe take some from the frist Moon People and add it. Maybe two because then both Moon People’s will have 78 page’s. I used pag’es 37-38 but you might like other different page’s.

So but the book. This book the second Moon People 2 was better than Moon People because I was already excited and the first Moon People 1. So I read it. Moon People 2, and it was better at riveting me. So when after reading I gave it to my friend and He said to leave him alone. Because he’s reading Moon People 2, but he doesn’t have Moon People 1! So some parts of it might not make as much sense? But part’s that do are good.

And one might think that with two tremendous successes under his belt, Courtney might choose to laurel sit, except notice his sly wink and nod at the close of Moon People 2‘s description: “It’s some of my best work. And don’t worry some day you just might see something that resembles ‘Moon People 3′coming to your local Book store near you.”

Fans had 15 months to endure before the prophecy came true, because in April of 2010, "MOON PEOPLE 3: VENUS THE GODDESS OF LOVE" WAS PUBLISHED, BRINGIng (sorry, forgot to take caps lock off) much jubilation to the world. What Courtney did with MOON PEOPLE 3 was unleash an all caps bellow of artistry that brought the saga full circle. Instead of trying to summarize the story, I’ll defer to Mr. Courtney himself, from the book description:

Introduction Moon People 3 Thank you for reading my book Moon People 3. My goal in Moon People 3 was to make it as action pact from start to finish just like my first two Moon People books. I had to make a “Grand Finale” so I put everything into Moon People 3. I would also like to talk to you about the Venus genesis in this book for a moment. All of the Venus technical data is accurate and the Venus genesis formula is based on an actual analytical possible “Venus Genesis”. It took me a while to figure out a true Venus genesis possibility. Because of the real high pressure in the atmosphere and on the surface. Also the very high temperatures on the surface. If It wasn’t for me trying to figure out how to do a genesis on Mars and Venus. I would not have believed it possible. But now I believe it really can be done on both planets, Mars and Venus and maybe easier than we all thought. You know it is true that we can not go beyond our solar system because of distance and time in our life cycle. But I submit that we should be concentrating on the planets in our solar system. Could you imagine if we could pull off a Venus genesis or even a Mars genesis. We could colonize another planet in our solar system. Wouldn’t that be the ultimate! Besides all of the above. I hope you don’t mind but I just had to add some “Action Pack Sci-Fi Space Adventure” to the mix also. I hope you enjoy my book Moon People 3. I really enjoyed writing it for you. If you like Moon People 3, I hope you will read 1 And 2 also. I know you will enjoy them. If you have any questions or comments please e-mail me at: Thank you for your time and God Bless. Author Dale M. Courtney Sci-Fi Books “Moon People Trilogy”

If you’re curious, you can read a big chunk of the book at Google Books, including the book’s stirring last page.

And with that, it’s time for this post to close, because blood is starting to come out of my ear. One last excerpt, my dear readers, for it was fun while it lasted. Thank you for your time and God bless.

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