Thursday, July 10, 2014

Recently Read:Choke

Author: Chuck Palahniuk
Genre: Adult Fiction
Year Published: 2001
Status: Stand Alone
Page Count: 293
Rating:  4/5

I read my first Chuck Palahniuk book in the form of Choke. I was aware of Palahniuk's reputation and was unsure if I would like his books, or if I would think his books were too weird, but I enjoyed it.

Choke is the story of Victor. He is a twenty-five year old medical school dropout with a delusional mother, and a sex addiction. In order to support himself, Victor and his best friend Denny go to fancy restaurants, where Victor then pretends to choke on his food and allows strangers to save him. He finds that once someone saves your life, they feel responsible for you and the strangers send him money.

This book's plot is extremely unique. Victor is an intriguing and very messed up character. It's so interesting to read his narration of the story and see what is happening in his mind. Palahniuk's writing is really great. This book is worth the read just for the writing. His writing just flows so well, and he has such great control of his characters and the reader. I loved how Victor's mind had a repeating pattern of thinking, and Palahnuik had repeated sentences that were structured the same, but said different things, if that makes any sense. There was on passage in particular in this book that really struck me as great writing, and made me stop reading to think about the writing for a little while (Pages 140-141 for those who have read the book).

This work, along with a lot of his other works, are often categorized as transgressive fiction, which focuses on characters that feel confined by society's norms and expectations and often break free of these norms in unusual ways. Many people also classify his works as satire. I can see their thinking, but I think this piece is a very loose satire. This books could be interpenetrated as making a statement about addictions, but it's debatable if that statement is satirical. (If you are looking for good satire start with Jonathon Swift.) This book is really interesting to discuss with others.    

From what I can gather, this is a lot of Palahniuk fans' least favorite book of his, which is very promising for his other books. I'm interested in reading more from him. Fight Club is at the top of my list, I have seen and enjoyed the movie, and I am interested in his short stories and other works as well.

Leave me your Palahniuk recommendations.     

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