Saturday, June 15, 2013

Sex on the Moon: 1 Star

Sex on the Moon by Ben Mezrich

Few things annoy me more than a non-fiction book that is more fiction than reality. With high hopes, I started this book of a kid who steals moon rocks for his girlfriend, only to be immediately confused by the tone. The author gives details he couldn't possibly know. I don't mind the idea of writing nonfiction as a narrative, but when you take as many liberties as Mezrich, it's time to call it fiction that's based on a true story. His main source of information was the culprit, Thad Roberts. Through personal research, it doesn't take long to learn that most of the other players and facts of the case, label Thad a manipulative liar. His tale of thievery, while interested, is tarnished with lies and exaggerations. 

Despite my disappointment in the labeling of this book, the tale itself annoyed me. The guy starts out pleating for sympathy and blaming all else in his life for his actions. This tale of "love" is nothing even close. Thad plotted to steal the rocks and even located a buyer long before he met the girl. The girl, mind you, was young and wide-eyed, obviously manipulated by Thad, who was much older, oh, and very much married. And he knew her less than a month. This guy blames his actions on not only his religious parents and strict Mormon upbringing, but even on his wife and NASA for their classification of "trash" rocks. The problem being, Thad stole rocks that took one man years to obtain through proper channels and lost his life's work, a man who was nothing but gracious to Thad. I was thoroughly disgusted by this tale. 

The worst part was the women involved. His poor wife discovered her husband's infidelity when he called to be bailed out. Then when she sent divorce papers, he decided to call her to apologize. She merely told him she hoped he was enjoying the his new friends in prison. He then goes off on how cruel she was to say that to him. Seriously? You want sympathy? No. You get none. 

Sadly, this will be made into a Hollywood movie and he will be portrayed as the genius who made an innocent mistake for love. It's sad really. I hope Tiffany Fowler (Rebecca in the book) was able to seek therapy and move past this and I hope his now ex-wife has found happiness. As far as Thad, I guess he is on to manipulate an even larger audience.

I do not recommend this book and will NOT see the movie if/when it is made. 

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