never read that one but Iris Murdoch’s great, A Severed Head is a hoot
under the net is great
I had never heard of Coupland before I happened across JPod in one of those “take a book, leave a book” shelves in France. I had no idea what to expect, and it started off with a long stream of nihilistic consciousness. “Great!” I thought. “Another Chuck Palahniuk!”
But I stuck with it, and thank christ I did, because it got very funny, very quickly. On top of that, as soon as I finished I felt compelled to read every single one of his books, which I did over a period of three months or so. Now he’s one of my all time favourites too.
But that said, I’ve no idea how I’d feel about JPod if I approached it with preconceptions.
One of the characters in Catch-22 ends up with the name Major Major Major Major Major Major. Or something.
Kurt Vonnegut – Cat’s Cradle
The Complete Works of William Shakespeare.
Might give it another try then, used to be obsessed with him and would by proof copies of his books on eBay before they were out, even have his book about Lego and the one in Japanese. Have you seen the jpod tv show? It’s on Netflix
Barely read any books on account of my abject stupidity, but Catch-22 is hysterical in places. I embarrassed myself on the train or the break room at work a lot while I was reading it, because it would make me snort-laugh a lot. You know when you see a person laughing at book in a public place and think what an oddball they are? I was that sadsack for a few weeks.
timewaster letters is a great shout. was frequently in tears reading that.
I think the wider story behind his name and the fact that (if I remember correctly) his father kept the name a secret from Major’s mother for so long that, when she found out, she immediately died of shock was also funny, in the dark and slightly horrifying way typical of the novel.
The only other Heller book I read was Something Happened, which was so powerfully bleak that I don’t think I ever want to go back to it.
On the plus side, seeing people unguardedly laughing at something they’re reading / listening to in public is one of the most life-affirming things to witness. I kind of have to think that, given the amount of times podcasts have made me look very weird in public places.
Catch-22 is the funniest book I’ve ever read. where do you get the impression it’s po-faced and boring?
I like it because it pretty much entirely makes fun of men and how stupid they are all the time.
The Broom of the System by DFW is pretty funny. the Gilligan’s Island-themed restaurant bit was the first time a book ever made me actuaLOL.
Mick Foleys first book
That’s awesome! When me and my pals were all reading his stuff years back we realised he was still alive and half formulated a plan to go see him in the hopes that his world would be like the ones in his writing. Obviously never did it though. Depp would have made a shit film of it but someone should adapt him definitely. Onion Eaters would be good.
Keep meaning to read either this or Infinite Jest (as in I’m tempted to start with Broom first, but wonder whether I could just jump right into Infinite Jest).
Good As Gold is another funny one by him, bit like Catch 22 but about Jewish identity and business if I remember rightly. But yeah sometimes he gets real bleak
Ooh, I got a Father Ted spin-off book that I’d not heard of before for Christmas. It was framed as a series of parish newsletters, and has a very Viz sensibility to it. ActuaLOLs abound.
I did Broom then Jest. however, you’ve done Gravity’s Rainbow, so you’d be fine going straight into it Jest.
read Broom first, though.