Monday, June 02, 2008

Snuff, by Chuck Palahniuk

(hb; 2008)

From the inside flap:

"Cassie Wright, porn priestess, intends to cap her legendary career by breaking the world record for serial fornication. On camera. With six hundred men. Snuff unfolds from the perspectives of Mr. 72, Mr. 137, and Mr. 600, who await their turn on camera in a very crowded green room. This wild, lethally funny, and thoroughly researched novel brings the huge yet underacknowledged presence of pornography in contemporary life into the realm of literary fiction at last..."


Rife and peopled with ironies and good-intentions-gone-darkly-tragic, this mordant, fast, funny read is one of Palahniuk's best novels to date. It's not as shocking as Fight Club, but theme- and tone-wise, it reads like a logical follow-up to Rant, which maintained Palahniuk's puzzle-piece journalistic style and sly ideas, many of which are supported by Palahniuk's trademark, quoted factoids.

For those put off by Palahniuk's narrative ickiness (Palahniuk has a fondness to writing about bodily fluids and the less savory aspects of humanity), this may be the novel to read; Snuff, despite its pornographic subject matter, is surprisingly less gross, and gentler than many of his previous works (one exception is Diary, which has a female narrator).

By all means, check this out.

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