- Paperback: 240 pages
- Publisher: Touchstone; Reprint edition (Aug. 20 1997)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0684836270
- ISBN-13: 978-0684836270
- Product Dimensions: 13.3 x 1.8 x 20.3 cm
- Shipping Weight: 181 g
- Average Customer Review: 112 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #154,481 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Exquisite Corpse Paperback – Aug 20 1997
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You've probably heard that this love story about two cannibalistic serial killers (loosely modeled after Dennis Nilsen and Jeffrey Dahmer) is over the top. You've been warned about the lovingly meticulous descriptions of murder and necrophilia. But the novel also features a keen look at the AIDS plague, in a setting almost worth dying for: Brite's doomed aesthetes dance in a sweet, heady New Orleans of milky coffee and beignets, alligators, Billy Holiday tunes, scented candles, pirate radio, swamp French, andouille sausage and one bar for every 175 people. And the structure is the tightest of Brite's books so far. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Publishers Weekly
Blood-soaked sheets, cannibalism, rotting, half-dissected corpses: this gruesome psychological horror novel has all the grue a reader might?or might not?want. Brite (Drawing Blood, 1993), the reigning queen of Generation-X splatterpunks, pulls out the stops in this ghastly tale of two serial killers who find true love over the body of a murdered and mutilated boy in the historic French Quarter of New Orleans. Londoner Andrew Compton, imprisoned for the necrophiliac slayings of 23 young men, escapes from prison by (rather unbelievably) faking his own death and killing the coroners gathered to autopsy his body. Fleeing to Louisiana, he hooks up with Jay Byrne, slacker scion of a wealthy old family, a man whose murders are even more fiendish than Compton's own. Brite is a highly competent stylist with a knack for depicting convincing, if monstrous, characters. Her plot development rests too heavily on coincidence, however, and on an excess of details drawn from the life of real-world serial killer and cannibal Jeffrey Dahmer. Though Brite shifts point of view throughout, she always returns to Compton's first person. This technique gives the narrative rhythm and emotional force but also seems aimed toward intimating the reader in Compton's acts of dehumanization ("the aesthetics of dismemberment") and depravity. And so what Brite really presents here is, ultimately, yet another crimson leaf in the literature of the pornography of violence.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
However, I knew what I was getting into, since this book was reccomended to be by another. P. Brite takes us on a unique journey and I'm glad I'm back.
In this novel, the setting is the mid-1980's a time where fear of AIDS was riding high, and people were dying right and left. In this bare, unemotional world, we meet two serial killers. Jay and Andrew murder for the joy of it, reveling in the corpses that they construct. The murders are graphic and gory, the prose clinical and restrained. Fans of Poppy's flowing poetic prose will find a different thing all together this tome around.
"Exquisite Corpse" was written in this way because it suits the mood of the novel. A world where people are dying from a ravishing disease, and embrace death as an escape. Where we are thrust into the minds of murderers of the most sickening sort. A literal hell on earth, this novel is without love, without hope, without any semblance of normalcy.
Poppy took a chance on writing this novel, and I praise her for it. "Exquisite Corpse" is relatively short, which some will think of as a blessing. The ending is too fast and unsatisfying, as if Poppy just got tired of living in the nightmarish world of depression and depravity that she created.
Still, this novel is worth a look for hardcore Poppy fans only. I would read "Lost Souls" and "Drawing Blood" before delving into this book, though.
Brite's writing is done so well you can almost smell the scents of the decadent French Quarter. Her dialogue is clear, cutting and painfully honest, her imagery so vivid when that first slice is made into the delicate human abdomen you feel your own guts begin to churn. The story is made all the more chilling because of the point of view switches. She takes the reader into the head of not only the victim but the killers as well. Be warned this is not a book for the faint of heart. It's filled with powerful, grotesque erotic images, and unspeakable acts of pain, torture and humiliation. Unlike many other killer novels the author makes no excuses for her characters. They were not molested, beaten or neglected as children.
EXQUISITE CORPSE is a chilling trip into the darkest corners of the human mind and puts a new spin on the idea of eternal love. Exquisitely Frightening.
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