Genres: Fiction, Short Stories, Anthology
Publication Date: May 26th 2015
2 OUT OF 5 STARS
Disclaimer: A free copy was received through the Goodreads First Reads program.
A collection of transgressive short stories written by Palahniuk over the course of a decade, including some previously published pieces.
It’s hard to start with this book, it’s story are mostly held up on cheap shock and gross-out tactics while relying on attempts to add surprising twists at the ending. At least one story is written in a faked dialect nearly impossible to read and only one or two stand out as actually having a good premise and decent execution. I certainly can’t unread these stories but it’s not because they were good.
I can remember every gross-out gimmick, but none of the characters names. I can remember that Palahniuk uses the word “anymore” in strange places and seems to be a little preoccupied with foreskin. Full of twisted views on love, marriage and women, it’s a mess. It was not entirely unenjoyable, but it’s clear Palahniuk valued cheap gimmicks above any characterization or plot.
This book seeks to offend and disgust it’s readers and to that end I imagine it will be very successful. Otherwise it’s just not very good.