The exhilarating debut novel by iconic filmmaker David Cronenberg: the story of two journalists whose entanglement in a French philosopher's death becomes a surreal journey into global conspiracy.
Stylish and camera-obsessed, Naomi and Nathan thrive on the yellow journalism of the social-media age. They are lovers and competitors - nomadic freelancers in pursuit of sensation and depravity, encountering each other only in airport hotels and browser windows.
Naomi finds herself drawn to the headlines surrounding Célestine and Aristide Arosteguy, Marxist philosophers and sexual libertines. Célestine has been found dead and mutilated in her Paris apartment. Aristide has disappeared. Police suspect him of killing her and consuming parts of her body. With the help of an eccentric graduate student named Hervé Blomqvist, Naomi sets off in pursuit of Aristide. As she delves deeper into Célestine and Aristide's lives, disturbing details emerge about their sex life - which included trysts with Hervé and others. Can Naomi trust Hervé to help her?
Nathan, meanwhile, is in Budapest photographing the controversial work of an unlicensed surgeon named Zoltán Molnár, once sought by Interpol for organ trafficking. After sleeping with one of Molnár's patients, Nathan contracts a rare STD called Roiphe's. Nathan then travels to Toronto, determined to meet the man who discovered the syndrome. Dr. Barry Roiphe, Nathan learns, now studies his own adult daughter, whose bizarre behavior masks a devastating secret. These parallel narratives become entwined in a gripping, dreamlike plot that involves geopolitics, 3-D printing, North Korea, the Cannes Film Festival, cancer, and, in an incredible number of varieties, sex. Consumed is an exuberant, provocative debut novel from one of the world’s leading film directors.
©2014 David Cronenberg Productions, Ltd. All rights reserved. (P)2014 Simon & Schuster, Inc. All rights reserved.
Free dumb isnt free
I probably will listen again at some point. This is a compelling example of how novels should be read.
I read the book first, so there were no surprises with regards to plot.
This is the only performance by Hurt I have listened to, but his reading style adds so much to the characters in this novel.
"Consumed" is a very cerebral novel; it affects you more in a critical, philosophical manner. For those who enjoy Cronenberg's films, I think this novel has a similar characteristic where there is an element of shock and awe in the aesthetic of the storytelling, but the impression you're left with is far more intellectual in nature.
When I read the book I felt like the characters lacked the kind of depth that affects a reader in any lasting way. There wasn't anything particularly memorable about the characters; they seemed to be written with great intuition, but were ultimately forgettable. Listening to the audiobook didn't necessarily change my impression, but it did give the characters a sense of nuance that makes them feel human and relatable. Will Hurt's performance make these characters stand out in my memory? No, not really, I'm almost certain I will still forget them, but I do enjoy the story more and it will make the novel as a whole more memorable.
I didn't like this at all. too much philosophy and photography...not enough action for me.
Ive tried to like this book for hours and thought i would finish it just to honor Cronenberg, and perhaps one day i will. But for now, I gotta move on. Hurt wounds like he can't remember what he was just saying and, while its certainly interesting to hear him be peculiar, its also highly dismissible. As for the story, ehhhh......there only seem to be a few parts that stray from the "how bizarre can this interaction get?" trope, leaving the dialogue flat, the sex boring and repetitive, and the storyline seeming only to be a vehicle for more opportunities for bizarre interactions.
Ill let you know when i get there, so close but it seems so far away.
um, yes, although he is the most interesting part of the book.
Consumed is expertly narrated by William Hurt. At first, his style bothered me, as it seemed much more "dramatic" than a typical narration, but by the end, it felt as if I were listening to a radio play more than a traditional audiobook.
The story is classic Cronenberg. If you're a fan like me, this is like a grand buffet of what I've missed from his last decade of films. Unsettling, amusing, erotic, horrific and mundane, often all at the same time. If you enjoy a strange tale that unfolds in unexpected directions this does not disappoint. If you're looking for a plot that you feel "makes sense", this may not be the book for you.
My favorite line: "Have you heard of 3D philosophical tissue printing?"
I know some folks thought the ending was rushed, but I was okay with it. It was a strange first novel by a very quirky screenwriter and director, so i was ready for it.
Almost anyone. I found his voice to be so distracting with the pauses and sentence phrasing. I did think his accents were great, however.
Readers familiar with the movies of Cronenberg will find many similar themes in Consumed. Themes of medical fetishism, insects, sci-fi gadgetry, global conspiracy and often grotesque, one-way transformation abound. While the themes may be familiar, the novel's direction was not and that is part of what I found captivating about this book.
The storyline is both modern and international. Modern tech, like tablets and digital photography are featured heavily in the plot and help give the story a contemporary feel. As we follow two photo journalist who are pursuing their own news stories in separate parts of the world, it is their cameras and computers that are indispensable intermediaries to each other.
I have only listened to one other narration by William Hurt. I forget which of Hemingway's stories it was but it was a disappointing listen, in part because Hurt sounded tired and nonchalant the whole time. I found Hurt's performance in Consumed to be nearly flawless. All of his accents were good and all of his characters were believable. I enjoyed hearing him take a sentence and prolong syllables or add an emphasis in a less then obvious way so as to provide nuance and destroy verbal monotony. Yet the overall feel of Hurt's narration is always calm even when things are tense.
If you've enjoyed the movies that spanned Cronenberg's career, then Consumed is a no-brainer.
I couldn't even finish this book. I'm sorry I wasted my money. It is very slow and boring. Not at all my "cup of tea". I would NOT recommend this book to anyone.
No. William Hurt did a fine job of reading this book, although I am not sure how he stayed awake.
The absence of a plot.
Was only able to listen to the first two hours of this story,
Gave up. Simply could not hold my attention.}
Not a book to listen to when driving a car.
Probably would have never published the book to begin with.
Remove from library of available material.
If I could, I would gladly return the book for a refund.
I have been listening to books for years and this is the first review I have written. I chose to do this because I think this is the worst book I have ever listened to from Audible. The story is inane, slow and just boring. To top it off William Hurt narrates at glacial speed. I thought the speed was wrong on my playback, but it was just the narrator. In summary this listen is just awful, the only book I have not and will not finish.
It is a terrible story. Not interesting, not believable, totally not engaging.
Too slow and overly dramatic.
All of them
Don't waste your time and money.
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