Thursday, April 03, 2008


by Chuck Palahniuk

I read this for book club. I had heard of this author because of his book (and movie) Fight Club which I never really had a desire to read (or see) and I was pleasantly surprised by this book. It is about a “culling song” which kills people. Originally the culling song was supposedly used in times of war or famine to humanly end the suffering of the young, the old, the wounded or dying. The novel however is set in today’s world in which it has been printed in a children’s book of nursery rhymes and consequently led to many accidental deaths. A man who accidently killed his wife and daughter teams up with woman who accidently killed her son and attempt to rid the world of all copies of the nursery rhyme book. I don’t want to give too much plot away but the novel is filled with outrageous characters, darkly funny scenes and witty social commentary.

The characters include a bereaved journalist, a real estate agent who sells and resells haunted houses, a witch, an extortionist/ environmentalist, and a paramedic who likes to have sex with beautiful dead women. There are some wonderful scenes regarding the bombardment of the senses by the noise pollution of the media. His descriptive narrative is unique and vivid, his dialog witty. My only complaint was that I found the end unsatisfying but I still enjoyed the book. If your not scared off by necrophilia and sudden infant death syndrom this dark satire will have you laughing out loud.

1 comment:

Charley said...

It's been a while since I read this, but it certainly made me interested in reading more Palahniuk. I remember a scene with a foot and a church steeple or something like that, and it gives me the shivers.