Sunday, January 23, 2005

A Chuck Palahniuk Two-fer

My most recent (completed) reading has been two books by Chuck Palahniuk (the author of Fight Club), Lullaby and Invisible Monsters. I've read a number of his books before, and these were probably my least favorite, although they were both amusing. Lullaby seems to be technically a better book, with a better plot line, a more creative idea behind it, and just more well-written overall. The basic premise is a reporter finds out there's a lullaby in a book that's actually a "culling" song (used to weed out the infirm and starving once upon a time) that's been causing crib deaths and other deaths. He embarks on a journey to eliminate the extant copies, and is forced to deal with the fact that his absolute power corrupts absolutely. However, I actually enjoyed Invisible Monsters, about a model who loses her face in an accident and her subsequent travels cross country with her ex-boyfriend and a transvestite, more, perhaps because Palahniuk just made everyone's relationship to everyone else so intermeshed and unreasonably coincidental that it was fun trying to think of how he was going to interconnect the characters next. That, and it had perhaps the best quote of both books:

"Go figure, but Texans seem to be a lot more comfortable around disastrous
house fires than they are around anal sex." (p. 276).

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