Saturday, June 19, 2010

Pygmy by Chuck Palahniuk

As a rabid Chuck Palahniuk fan, famous author of the cult classic Fight Club boy was  I tickled to get Pygmy  and start it. As I read the first page, my first response was WTF Chuck?!? Another gimmicky style?  Are you trying to drive off readers or just bend our minds?  
Rant and Snuff weren't enough to tickle your creative fancy? The book is written as if it is a first person account of a person whose primary language isn't English, but the account is written in English. For example, flowers are called "plant genitals." 

I almost quit the book, but I kept on, and I finally adapted to the writing style. The story is about Pygmy and his comrades, who were taken from their parents at a very young age and made into weapons of "the state." We never find out which country--Palahniuk does this on purpose--the country who wants to destroy the USA is a composition of what could be many other countries. Anyway, Pygmy and his comrades all enter the USA as foreign exchange students, with their goal to inflict "Operation Havoc."

I really did enjoy the story, even as distracted as I was by the writing. I really wish Ole Chuck would just weave us a few good novels without the gimmicks. He's a great writer, has a huge base and doesn't need to "play." Maybe I'm wrong. Maybe his gimmicks are forever sealing his fate as one of the greatest contemporary writers of our time.

*Note-after having time to stew over this novel, and looking back at how difficult it must have been to write it, I see it in a different light--Palahniuk is a genius.  I rate this one 4 blooms!

Disclosure:  This book was purchased by me and I received no compensation for this review.