June 26, 2017

Pygmy by Chuck Palahniuk

pygmyChuck Palanuik is one of my favourite authors, so I was looking forward to reading Pygmy a lot. And it doesn’t disappoint.

Once you get used to the writing style (not as hard as A Clockwork Orange) it’s a fascinating book. Pygmy is a child terrorist sent to the USA on a school exchange, and the book is his reports on the mission. That includes some reports reminising back to the time of being recruited and the training.

I felt the story is more about how American society functions than the terrorism aspect – Palahniuk is using the eyes of Pygmy and the actions of the terrorist cell to highlight the shortcomings of modern western society.

There’s a lot of humour here, as well as some really shocking moments.

Another fascinating book.

The Stepford Wives by Ira Levin

the stepford wivesI picked The Stepford Wives up in one of Amazon’s Kindle sales. I’m really glad I did.

Like many I’ve always understood the phrase “Stepford Wives”, but never really understood the full concept of the book. (I’ve not seen either film, yet, either).

The edition I read has a great intro by Chuck Palahniuk which I found very useful to understand the full scenario in which the book was written.

I was surprised by how short the book is (I think I’d got it a little confused with the tome-like Valley of the Dolls), and it’s also pretty scary.

It tells the story of Joanna Eberhart and her family as they move out of New York to the small town of Stepford. Where something odd is going on, with all the women these perfect wives.

It really gripped me, and I think it’s one I’ll def be reading again, and wishing for a different outcome.

Rant by Chuck Palahniuk

rantAnother brain-twister from Chuck Palahniuk – I swear this one stopped me from sleeping.

Rant is an oral history of the life of Buster (aka Rant) Casey. It’s told by friends, family, acquantences and more. As you read the different points of view it becomes increaseingly hard to seperate fact and fantasy.. but once you get reading you’ll realise that’s quite an essential piece of the tail.

As per usual there’s a theory to be explored with Palahniuk. This time it’s time-travel, segregation, and germ-warfare. Quite a heady mix -but it all comes together VERY well.

I can’t say too much more about the content – or it’ll spoil the story.

But I really do recommend it, it’s a read that will make you think. Although not exactly a page-turner it will grip you and drive you back for the next instalment.

Top 10 Books I most want for Christmas 2010

As Christmas bears down on us, and now Super Thursday is out of the way I thought I’d put together a little list of the 10 books I’d most like to find under the tree this Xmas.

This list is comprised of the books I haven’t yet read by my favourite authors, and also a few curve balls!

Generation A by Douglas Coupland
JPod by Douglas Coupland
I’ve read most of his works, and as yet I’ve not come across one I didn’t enjoy on multiple levels – easy to read, and un-put-downable, yet also pretty deep and intelligent.

The Pregnant Widow by Martin Amis
I love Martin Amis’ books. In fact London Fields is my no 1 favourite book (must give it a re-read in 2011), so his latest offering is definitely on the current wish list.

Tell-All by Chuck Palahniuk
Pygmy by Chuck Palahniuk
He writes such wonderful stories, and always an awesome take on modern society. These are his latest two, and I feel rather embarrassed I haven’t read either of them yet.

Glamorama by Bret Easton Ellis
I’ve read pathetically little of B.E.E. Just American Psycho (which is even better than the film), and Less Than Zero. Glamorama seems like the obvious next step.

Riddley Walker by Russell Hoban
I forget who recommended this one to me – but I keep forgetting to buy it!

Morvern Callar by Alan Warner
Another author I’ve read scarily little of. This one has been on the list for YEARS! Definitely time to get it done.

The Beautiful and Damned by F Scott Fitzgerald
I’ve read most of his books – yet this one evades me!

Psychogeography by Will Self
I’ve read several of his novels but not enough of his other writing.

Freedom by Jonathan Franzen
SO much written about this one I feel I should find out what all the fuss is about.