Friday, August 16, 2013


by Chuck Palahniuk
241 pgs

Agent Number 67 is one of several children sent to The United States as sleeper agents to one day unleash Operation Havoc. Each was taken from their respective families at a very young age to be indoctrinated and trained to one day carry out a deadly attack that would cripple America and bring glory to themselves and their homeland.

The book is written as an epistolary novel, each chapter being written by Agent Number 67 (nicknamed "Pygmy" by his host family due to his diminutive size) in the form of a report to his handlers back home on the various aspects of American culture he's exposed to and the progress of Operation Havoc.

Unfortunately for me, the story was overshadowed by Palahniuk's choice of writing style. The entire book is written in broken and incorrect English. Imagine reading a book written in Pig Latin. It's decipherable, and for a page or so it might be interesting, but eventually it becomes tiresome and distracting. Here's an example taken from the chapter where Pygmy attends his first choral class at the school he's attending:

For official example, purpose lesson titled "Junior Swing Choir" many potential brilliant youth compelled sing song depicting precipitate remain pummel head of operative me. Complain how both feet too large size for sleeping mattress. Idiot nonsense song. Next sing how past visited arid landscape aboard equine of no title. All student compelled, no option.

This is the second book in a row by Palahniuk that's been a disappointment. Tell-All was the worst book I read all of 2012, and this one is in the running for 2013. It probably won't be the last book by him that I'll read considering how good Fight Club and Rant were, but he's running out of chances with me.

★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆

No comments:

Post a Comment