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Survivor | [Chuck Palahniuk]

Survivor

Tender Branson, the last surviving member of the so-called Creedish Death Cult, is dictating his life story into the flight recorder of Flight 2039, cruising on autopilot at 39,000 feet somewhere over the Pacific Ocean. He is all alone in the airplane, which will crash shortly into the vast Australian outback. But before it does, he will unfold the tale of his journey from an obedient Creedish child and humble domestic servant to an ultra-buffed, steroid-and-collagen-packed media messiah.
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Publisher's Summary

Tender Branson, the last surviving member of the so-called Creedish Death Cult, is dictating his life story into the flight recorder of Flight 2039, cruising on autopilot at 39,000 feet somewhere over the Pacific Ocean. He is all alone in the airplane, which will crash shortly into the vast Australian outback. But before it does, he will unfold the tale of his journey from an obedient Creedish child and humble domestic servant to an ultra-buffed, steroid-and-collagen-packed media messiah.

This is author Chuck Palahniuk at his deadpan peak, a mesmerizing, unnerving, and hilarious satire on the wages of fame and the bedrock lunacy of the modern world.

©1999 Chuck Palahniuk; (P)2006 Blackstone Audio Inc.

What the Critics Say

"A perfect comment on our apocalypse-fixated times." (Spin)
"Brilliantly satiric and savagely funny." (San Francisco Chronicle)
"Mordant....One's sympathy for the improbably doomed hero is fully engaged." (New Yorker)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (970 )
5 star
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Overall
3.9 (632 )
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4.1 (625 )
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3 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Tim United States 08-20-12
    Tim United States 08-20-12 Member Since 2011

    I don't write book reports.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Dark Read"

    I was looking for a dark read for the weekend and a friend of mine suggested Survivor to me. Palahniuk always paints his story with black, grey, dark, with no other colors in the rainbow and maybe that is why I enjoy his writing so much because there is a part of me where I wished that I was like his main characters, very egoistic and demented.

    Survivor is written very well, if you like this kind of slasher genre. The Biblical references, sexual taboo and the ongoing suicides, is just brilliant because it goes against what is norm. You can see Tender's hell from his point of view and can understand his arrogance toward everyone. The descending order with the chapters is a count down to the black box.

    I highly recommend this title. It is 100% gruesome then the Dexter series, which is a total garbage. I just wished that Dexter was Chuck Palahniuk's idea because it would be that much darker without the fluff.

    14 of 18 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dave Westford, MA, United States 11-15-07
    Dave Westford, MA, United States 11-15-07
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    8
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    "very interesting"

    Not your typical book, but very entertaining. I found myself listening to it whenever I could. Full of interesting, but logical twists and turns. A worthy listen.

    8 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cynthia Jewell West Richland, WA, US 10-22-14
    Cynthia Jewell West Richland, WA, US 10-22-14 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Too Negative"
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    No one needs these negative thoughts and images in their heads.


    What was most disappointing about Chuck Palahniuk’s story?

    I listened to the first 15 minutes or so and found the ridiculous darkness of the story to almost be a dark comedy. But then it just didn't let up and I don't want such a negative story running around inside my head so I turned it off.


    What does Paul Garcia bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Narrator was superb, his delivery of creepiness dead-on.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Sad that a character could be such a jerk.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christina 05-18-14
    Christina 05-18-14

    Tech gal

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Mind-expandingly good"
    Any additional comments?

    What a terrific read, with many sentences making you back up and listen to or read again. So original, so full of odd perspectives, that had I a big enough block of time, I would have gotten through in one sitting. I say that about very few books. Caveat: I did a combo of listen and read so I did not hear the entire narration. I was a bit put off by the reader as it did not match the voice in my head from reading it, but that's probably my fault, not the narrator. However, I believe I may have liked reading it better than listening because given the option, I went back to the Kindle book version.
    This book is dark, profound in places, and a sad commentary on society in many ways, so if you're looking for a light read, chick lit, romance or the like, this definitely isn't it.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    jam 07-05-13
    jam 07-05-13

    jam

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Depressing as hell; absurdly funny"

    I've read before that Chuck Palahniuk explores similar themes among his novels, and if you read fight club, reading this would feel very familiar because of the over all tone. When I first read the summary I found the concept to be very interesting, but sadly, I think the delivery couldn't be more disappointing. I know the voice of the book is supposed to sound deadpan, but more than anything it was depressing as hell. The book started out building up painfully slow,and around midway the plot picks up but ends abruptly as you might have predicted early on starting from the first page. (Oddly, the book begins with the last page, and ends on page 1)

    That said, Palahniuk is still a great writer, the writing in the book is as skillful as ever, with satirical references and countless metaphors that would strike you as absurdly funny. Perhaps this is what got most people hooked on the book; but I'm just thinking maybe this kind of satire is not my cup of tea. Even so, perhaps this is as far as I would go with Palahniuk's work. I daresay reading Fight Club and this one would be enough of his best work.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Aden LAFAYETTE, CO, United States 02-27-13
    Aden LAFAYETTE, CO, United States 02-27-13 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Well, I Survived It--But That Ain't Saying Much"

    Trite. Un-original. Disappointing. Predictable. If this audiobook was playing over the intercom system on an auto-pilot guided flight with no one aboard, only vapors in the tanks and engines burning out--I would gladly force the yoke forward and rocket myself terra-bound, but I do not believe the final moments would pass quickly enough to end my suffering. Gilbert Gottfried doing a one-man production of "Little Women," is more appealing than the thought of listening to Survivor again.

    Same character archetypes as in many other Chuck's books. Same nihilistic ennui and dull, achingly obvious reveals.

    Some ideas are best kept scribbled on napkins and not graced with a cover and space on a bookshelf, let alone an audiobook production.

    7 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gavin manchester, Jamaica 05-18-12
    Gavin manchester, Jamaica 05-18-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "excelent buy"

    an excellent book. the characters are interesting and funny in a dark kind of way.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kevin Rochester, MN, United States 02-20-12
    Kevin Rochester, MN, United States 02-20-12 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Very interesting premise."
    What did you love best about Survivor?

    I didn't see that coming.

    This is the 1st novel of Chuck Palahniuk's that I have read/heard. Very unique style and it took me most of the book to figure out how the beginning ties into the rest of the story.

    It kept pulling me along for the ride. I would recommend it if you like strange stories that keep you thinking about how things fit together.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dennis Charlestown, MA, United States 07-27-12
    Dennis Charlestown, MA, United States 07-27-12 Member Since 2014

    Born and raised in the Charlestown section of Boston. Irish-American, music (punk rock), crime & history, or anything having to do with those are my favorite subjects.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great but strange story."

    Not your usual from Chuck but it is a book that I could not stop listening to. I have listened to it more than once since then & while it is a very strange concept, it works & is believable (well most of it anyway).

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    BethAnn Denver, CO, United States 07-14-11
    BethAnn Denver, CO, United States 07-14-11 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I wanted to like this but...."

    I love horror, suspense and just weird stories, so I really wanted to like this, especially with all the good reviews. I just couldn't get into it though. It was just too weird. I might try it again in the future, but I just had a hard time following the story line. I am all for leaving the reader with questions, but it is a fine balance between hooking the reader and confusing the reader. I was confused. Maybe when I am feeling more patient, I will try it again.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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