I admit I am biased about this book. I read it as a teenager and it was one of my formative experiences. However, I would not be so biased if it were not genuinely great. This is a novel which plumbs parts of human experience that are not usually dealt with so bluntly. For example, it has things to say about body anxieties that are almost unheard today. And it has one of the best portrayals of the concept of the horror of the ordinary that I have ever seen. It is what I point to when I want to explain that concept to people who have never felt it.
Let me put it this way, I have read this book at least five times in the last five years. Then I downloaded this audiobook, and I have listened to it twice in the last two weeks. It is just that good.
If you are not in the mainstream, if you are a freak, you owe yourself this book. Really.
This was my first exposure to Poppy Z Brite, actually. I'd previously avoided her out of a desire to avoid the cliches. But sometimes, cliches exist for a reason. Poppy Z Brite is like chocolate and absinthe for breakfast. Her work is dark and decadent and delicious. Chris Patton's reading was entirely competent and his voice is well suited for the teenagers in this story. I've already listened to this twice and I expect to listen to it again in the future. I only hope Audible acquires more work by Poppy Z Brite.
I found this book light and amusing, with a delightful flavour of morbidity. It is great if you want something along those lines. It is not High Literature, but it is not intended to be. The reader gives it the proper tone and I didn't catch any mispronunciations. However, it does drag at the end and become focused on letting the plot twist, rather than on the writing.
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