Thursday, December 13, 2007

Invisible Monsters by Chuck Palaniuk

Holy crap, did this book suck. The review is going to be one big spoiler.

I'll summarize the plot as quickly as possible. The protagonist is a former model who had the bottom of her face shotgunned off. She travels around the country with her ex-boyfriend, a former cop/male hooker, and Brandy Alexander, a transexual “queen supreme.” Together, they run around the countryside, stealing drugs from old rich people. There's also a former best friend, Evie, who mostly stopped associated with Daisy. Brandy and Protagonist are both slipping female hormones into Boyfriend's drinks, so he is developing breasts and crying a lot.

So, here are the twists: Brandy is Protagonist's twin brohter, who she didn't recognize because of the sex change operation. He doesn't recognize her because half her face is gone. Also, we find out that Protagonist shot her own face off because... well, because Palaniuk had an idea that might have sounded neat when I was 15. She shot off the bottom of her face because it was the thing she least wanted to do. Same reason Brother became Brandy. Duh. Oh, also, Evie turns out to be a transsexual too, and Brandy blows her away at the end. At least, I think it's Brandy who does that.

Despite its pulpy sensationalism, Invisible Monsters was unbelievably dull. This is the second Palaniuk I've read (Diary was the first), and I feel fairly confident in saying that he's a total hack. There's nothing compelling or interesting in his work. Only a grade-school subversiveness and lots of dirty words. This book wasn't worth the time it took to write this review.


Christopher said...


Anonymous said...

Personally I prefer Survivor, Choke, and Fight Club by Palahniuk. I found Invisible Monsters to be funny. Choke is funny, too, and Survivor and Fight Club are more gritty and dark. You should give them a try before giving up on the guy.