[KINDLE] ❄ Rant: An Oral Biography of Buster Casey By Chuck Palahniuk – Agedanna.info
Buster Rant Casey Just May Be The Most Efficient Serial Killer Of Our Time A High School Rebel, Rant Casey Escapes From His Small Town Home For The Big City Where He Becomes The Leader Of An Urban Demolition Derby Called Party Crashing Rant Casey Will Die A Spectacular Highway Death, After Which His Friends Gather The Testimony Needed To Build An Oral History Of His Short, Violent Life Chuck Palahniuk is the literary equivalent of punk rock In a book that pulls on varied and important themes, Rant An Oral History of Buster Casey manages to feature an exceptionally peculiar storyline that never stops at its primary goal being a hell of a good time This is a book that deals with important topics, like religion and the meaning of life, but doesn t keep itself neatly organized and stacked with pristine white pages Instead, Rant is a beautiful book with pages askew that just happens to be covered in the dirt and slime of real life Pulling on the underused oral biography format, Palahniuk is able to fully flesh out a huge cast of characters and an immense story in a relatively quick read Essentially, this is a novel with the long expositional passages replaced with non stop dialogue It is initially jarring, but this novel pulls from a history of stories being told conversationally The format of oral history reinforces the themes of the novel the development of fame and legend through, essentially, word of mouth, while also being a stylistic and enjoyable experience The plot Honestly, I don t even want to talk too much about what happens in Rant There is a lot of joy in not knowing what you are in for The novel is roughly divided into three acts, and each one plays on a different part of our main character s Buster Rant Casey life This novel never stays stagnant, and moves with the speed of a Party Crashing vehicle on a collision course All the same, on this second read, it had me flipping back to the start to pick up the trail of candy crumbs pill capsules Palahniuk has deftly interwoven for a stellar finish This novel is sci fi, in that it is set in the future, but doesn t use its genre moorings as a crutch Rant is a character study through and through Oh, and its weird As in, some of the weirdest stuff you may have ever read in a novel Bottom line, you aren t going to read many books as unique or as much fun as Rant There s other stuff too, but don t read up about it, go in clean You ll come out dirty, but you ll have been highly entertained in the process. I m not a Chuck P fan simply because he is edgy or because I get off on the so called depravity of his often violent and sexual themes I know a few folks like that What I enjoyed most about this book was the structure, the measured reveal Based on the oral tradition, each chapter is composed of brief statements from a cast of dozens Individually, these narrators are hopelessly unreliable, but taken together they form a whole picture that is true than any single testimony could be I m a sucker for an unreliable narrator, so give me a couple dozen and I m in heaven Some critics accuse the author of choosing gruesome subject matter for shock value, but in this book, at least I found the weaving of those violent themes to be compelling rather than repugnant Another aspect I appreciated was the inclusion of experts whose testimonies were full of academic and theoretical pontifications I think that was Chuck poking fun at himself and his edgy reputation. What the hell Let me first say I love Chuck P I love his usually disturbing stories and weird characters I don t mind the fact that he seems a little crazy, and I don t mind all of the sex he writes about I also don t mind the gory gross factor I like him This book was just bad in my opinion Maybe if I knew it had an amazing ending I could have pushed through the last half, but after the first half of this book I realized I didn t care at all about Buster, or his story So I stopped reading This book seemed to be over the top in grossness which seemed like he was relying on pure shock value I also didn t much enjoy the writing in oral history fashion, but he made it clear this is how it was going to be since page one so that s my own fault.I m giving this two stars instead of one, because I so always enjoy his humor, and it s present in this book again The writing is still good, I just found the story lacking.I don t think I would recommend this book to anyone.I want to read another Chuck P book right away, so that this isn t the last experience in my mindNot sure which one to move onto next, though. This is the story of a small town hell raiser named Buster Rant Casey who did some slightly unusual things when he was growing up like collecting bucketfuls of his classmate s teeth Young Rant also angers animals than Steve Irwin so that they ll bite him and infect him with rabies which he deliberately spreads to his class mates After he grows up and moves to the city, Rant joins a disenfranchised part of society forced by law to stay in their homes during the day and who get their kicks by crashing cars into each other After his spectacular fiery death, the government labels him a bio terrorist who unleashed a deadly outbreak of rabies while others claim that Rant may have had a larger destiny than anyone can imagine.And that s not even the weirdest or most twisted part of the story This is my second favorite Chuck Palahniuk novel after Fight Club Rant s story is told as an oral history by a variety of friends and enemies The mishmash of weird anecdotes about a guy who seems to be completely fucked in the head eventually coalesce into a wild narrative that almost makes an audible click as the story starts locking together Like all of Chuck P s books, it s disturbing and gory and gross and funny and definitely not for the faint of heart or easily offended As soon as I finished it the first time a few years ago, I knew I d come back to it again because this is one of those story where knowing the ending gives you a whole different spin on things your second time through. A Brief CaveatIt feels somewhat strange and almost in bad taste to be reviewing a Chuck Palahnuik book because this just happened If you don t want to search through the link Paquita one of the coolest peeps on Goodreads made mention of the fact that Chuck P had recommended the book she had just read and if she had known that, then she probably wouldn t have read the book because she doesn t care much for the stylings of Mr Palahniuk Enter a crazed, rabid fan of Chuck P who starts criticizing Paquita s tastes A bit of witty banter ensues which leads to the most insane, misogynistic troll tirade I ve ever seen That crazed fan was promptly shouted down by a loyal troll fighting clan of goodreaders but then several sock puppets joined in on the bashing I d like to leave all that emotional baggage at the door and continue this review as if none of this happened and attempt to address the book and its author on their own terms.Introductionary Quote, S.penkevich Style, to Set the Mood Thematic WeightMe and Death, separated at birth PreconceptionsI m drawing from an extremely small sample size, but there seems to be a positive correlation between my fellow literature lovers and those who dislike the cut of Palahniuk s jib The opposite seems to be true as well I know several people who fashion themselves as casual readers but still love to read Chuck Palahniuk haven t you read Fight Club It s the greatest thing ever, dude It seems natural for a person such as myself then to associate the two together and draw a larger conclusion, given the data presented, that Chuck P., while very well being a good writer for the plebeians, may not be the writer that I could ever get into, only one about whom I could have a full arms extended appreciation and to which I could say well, I certainly see the appeal, but it s not my cup of tea Zounds Induction be damned, because I m here to say that I straight up loved this book Sure, it s not perfect Sure, he is pulp in a certain sense Sure, he wears his Vonnegut Pynchon inspiration on his sleeve but the guy still knows a thing or two about writing that I think we all can appreciate, hold hands and sing kumbaya to.Plot SummaryThis book centers around the enigmatic figure of Buster Rant Casey, a character that is involved in a variety of juvenile activities as a child and eventually joins a group of people called nighttimers that participate in party crashing not what you re thinking here The act of party crashing involves tagging a target car and allowing everyone else to attack said targeted car in an attempt to destroy it the people inside Writing StyleThe book is told in oral biography format, which means that the book is a series of interviews with all the people in Rant s life, as they talk about all of his misadventures and shenanigans The only person who doesn t get a voice is Rant himself view spoiler and Rant s father, because it is Rant hide spoiler It s not everyday you read a book about rabies, the origins of God, time travel, and bumper cars Seeing that this is a Chuck Palahniuk book, I shouldn t be surprised that this novel hops barriers and barrels through genres without a single fuck given for your comfort or confusion level Buster Rant Casey can tell you what you had for breakfast three days ago, what kind of flowers you have waiting in a vase back at home, and whether your shower head is steel or bronze simply by eating your pussy That s talent folks Of course, all this is explained, but for a while all you can do is laugh Rant An Oral Biography of Buster Casey is so fucking absurd that you will begin to think you are reading bizarro fiction And then, about 2 3 of the way through, everything starts making a shade of lunatic sense Before it s all over everything is explained and you re left wondering how in the Greater Balls of Christ Palahniuk managed to juggle all these different voices and plot threads into one cogent narrative Invisible Monsters is still my favorite of his works, but this is the new runner up Sorry Choke, but this book is smarter than you Don t feel bad You re still good, but not as good as RantFunny side note I didn t finish this the first time I read it because it seemed like a book full of character interviews and I fucking hate that shit This time I powered through Damn glad I did All the fucking stars In summation You ll need your thinking caps if you re going to appreciate this one The book is written the way it is for a reason Every character is important, and all thread tie together by the end A lot of people will hate this book I get that But it does not deserve their hatred.Final Judgment Fight Club references are rad. History is nothing except monsters or victims Or witnessesChuck Palahniuk, RantHE was close He was so damn close He just didn t close it at the end It was a poem that ended in a whimper The mixture was nearly perfect, just not flammable But don t say Chuck didn t try I imagine Palahniuk had Ballard s Crash and Benford s Timescape, several Oral Histories, and perhaps even Hofstadter s G del, Escher, Bach An Eternal Golden Braid sitting on his shelf as he wrote this Reading Rant was like watching a blind guy juggle a bunch of balls, some are on fire, and some you realize are actually burning cats Palahniuk exists on an edge of grotesque, absurdity and social criticism that sometimes makes you lose sight of the shore You forget what the normal is You forget the boundaries You are caught between a weird night and equally bizarre day You aren t sure what to do so you just keep digging reading Five major takeaways from this novel which I might one day delve into deeper if I ever find myself with too much Liminal time or space in between 1 Rabies Bites2 Hyperosmia Hypergeusia 3 Time Travel Incest4 Party Crashing Night Day5 Oral History Myth making ChristianityAnyway, I enjoyed the novel It flew But it just ended meh No bang No cliff Just a strange, absurd, grotesque, incestuous loop. WTF did I just read and why did I finish it This book is a mish mash of narrators, grossness, time travel, car crashes, a rabies plague, segregation and dull characters I kept hoping it would improve and then it was just over This story somewhat follows a dull witted character named Buster or Rant as he s better known who gets off on catching rabies His attraction to pain and rabies eventually leads to a rabies plague The story is told from the various and far too many points of view of people who stumbled across Rant during his life In this world people are either daytimers or nighttimers The two don t mix, they have curfews and are fined if they break em The problem here, besides 20 too many narrators, is that they all have different opinions about what Rant did or didn t do and it s hard to discern what is truth, lie or confusion It took many a rewinding before I just let the frigging thing go and then things started to gel somewhat From what I can gather Rant grows up in a stereotypical small white trashy town which appears to be the dumping ground for unwanted dogs, tampons and used condoms Somehow he has a superhuman sense of smell and can sniff out a soiled condom or tampon and know from whom it once belonged to Now that s a talent there I ll never envy Lucky for Rant there seems to be lots of them floating about in this town as the sex tornado hits constantly and strews everyone s gross trash hither and fro This book is gross for no other than to ick out the reader This is fine if the book is fun but it s not It s boring and the characters unsympathetic So what did I learn Rant, our dashing lead whom all the woman later adore, spends his toddlerhood picking his nose when he s supposed to be napping, rolling it into black balls of goo and sticking it on the wall above his head Did I really need to know that He inoculates himself with venom from various critters and rabid animals at an early age When he reaches his teens he can not only sniff out the owner of a tampon but he gets a close looksee at most of the female genitalia in town and can name the previous owner of every bloody tampon he finds littering his yard simply by its shape There are some things we never need to know about a person Seriously.The book then rambles about with people adding their two cents about mostly boring bits of Rant Buster s life as he purposely infects himself with rabies and then spreads the infection all about And then time travel enters the picture and my brain explodes.I like weird books but they have to be interesting This one just wasn t. First off, a disclaimer I love Chuck P like a brother If the man was on dialysis I d give him a kidney even if I only had one good one left and consider it payback for all the stories of his that I ve enjoyed since discovering his work The lowdown Rant tells the story of Rant Casey a small town kid that turns his little town on it s ear before moving to the city to continue his work The book is comprised of accounts from people that knew Rant with only second hand accounts of his words and deeds and no perspective from our hero In that way, it s almost Biblical Although it is science fiction and a pretty far departure on the whole from Chuck Palahniuk s previous books, it s not as far off from what I expect out of him as Diary But Palahniuk s voice and eye are still there and elements of the book like character relationships and atmosphere are reminiscent of earlier books like Choke From the beginning, it s not clear where or when the setting is The place seemed to me to be a small desert town Time seemed to be anytime in the past century It s a brilliant device that Palahniuk never wavers from in the first half of the book It makes the reading a bit unsettling The significance of that displacement just builds throughout the book The characterization in this book is pretty amazing A strong and compelling vision of Rant is built as a charismatic, smart, wild man, but nobody describes him as such throughout the book Nobody says, Rant was crazy or sexy or maddening or 6 2 with brown hair and hazel eyes, but as the characters tell of their relationships with Rant the picture of him starts to come into focus The very memorable and alluring characters that populate the story by contributing to the oral history are intriguing and become fully fleshed out as the story progresses as well I really don t want to give it away, so if you haven t read the book, don t read the next line, butthe most interesting thing about this book to me was the future Palahnik creates out of what seems to be the past time It s very real and although it s not clear if it s 20 years down the road or 200, it s very believable which makes the book frightening to contemplate at times I very much loved how the past of Rant s childhood could have been the 1930s or the 1990s or any time until Bodie talks about plugging in The sci fi aspect of Rant really set the wheels of the story into motion and made it so much interesting than if Rant had been stuck in Middleton trading gold for teeth the entire book.