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Fight Club Paperback – Sep 27 2005

4.5 out of 5 stars 514 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: WW Norton; New edition edition (Sept. 27 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393327345
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393327342
  • Product Dimensions: 14 x 1.5 x 21.1 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 181 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars 514 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #2,761 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

From Amazon

The only person who gets called Ballardesque more often than Chuck Palahniuk is, well... J.G. Ballard. So, does Portland, Oregon's "torchbearer for the nihilistic generation" deserve that kind of treatment? Yes and no. There is a resemblance between Fight Club and works such as Crash and Cocaine Nights in that both see the innocuous mundanities of everyday life as nothing more than the severely loosened cap on a seething underworld cauldron of unchecked impulse and social atrocity. Welcome to the present-day U.S. of A. As Ballard's characters get their jollies from staging automobile accidents, Palahniuk's yuppies unwind from a day at the office by organizing bloodsport rings and selling soap to fund anarchist overthrows. Let's just say that neither of these guys are going to be called in to do a Full House script rewrite any time soon.

But while the ingredients are the same, Ballard and Palahniuk bake at completely different temperatures. Unlike his British counterpart, who tends to cast his American protagonists in a chilly light, holding them close enough to dissect but far enough away to eliminate any possibility of kinship, Palahniuk isn't happy unless he's first-person front and center, completely entangled in the whole sordid mess. An intensely psychological novel that never runs the risk of becoming clinical, Fight Club is about both the dangers of loyalty and the dreaded weight of leadership, the desire to band together and the compulsion to head for the hills. In short, it's about the pride and horror of being an American, rendered in lethally swift prose. Fight Club's protagonist might occasionally become foggy about who he truly is (you'll see what I mean), but one thing is for certain: you're not likely to forget the book's author. Never mind Ballardesque. Palahniukian here we come! --Bob Michaels --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

Featuring soap made from human fat, waiters at high-class restaurants who do unmentionable things to soup and an underground organization dedicated to inflicting a violent anarchy upon the land, Palahniuk's apocalyptic first novel is clearly not for the faint of heart. The unnamed (and extremely unreliable) narrator, who makes his living investigating accidents for a car company in order to assess their liability, is combating insomnia and a general sense of anomie by attending a steady series of support-group meetings for the grievously ill, at one of which (testicular cancer) he meets a young woman named Marla. She and the narrator get into a love triangle of sorts with Tyler Durden, a mysterious and gleefully destructive young man with whom the narrator starts a fight club, a secret society that offers young professionals the chance to beat one another to a bloody pulp. Mayhem ensues, beginning with the narrator's condo exploding and culminating with a terrorist attack on the world's tallest building. Writing in an ironic deadpan and including something to offend everyone, Palahniuk is a risky writer who takes chances galore, especially with a particularly bizarre plot twist he throws in late in the book. Caustic, outrageous, bleakly funny, violent and always unsettling, Palahniuk's utterly original creation will make even the most jaded reader sit up and take notice. Movie rights to Fox 2000.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
What can I say that hasn't been said before? This book is amazing and exceeded my literary expectations and broadened my horizons for selecting and reading literature. It is a book for men, I don't think many women would understand it. There is violence, romance, discourse on modern living and a few key twists and turns along the way. The main character is basically your every day man who wastes his life away in an office building living out his average life expectancy when things take a turn that transforms his life and the lives of all the other men trapped in modern estrogen based living. There is a binding reason that brings them all together but there is a rule, you don't talk about it.
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This is one of the most original books ever to come down the pike. (What exactly IS a pike, anyway?) The entire novel, written in first person, focuses around an insomniac, unhappy in his life, his job; material comfort means absolutely nothing, despite how much time he's meticulously devoted to furnishing his apartment. The narrator finds comfort in the most unlikely of places: Support groups for various diseases he doesn't even have. This lasts for years until someone else develops the same kind of addiction: The chain-smoking Marla Singer. If you're looking for book without a BIG twist, then pass this one by, for Mr. P. will give you an ending that you won't soon forget. Twist and twisted doesn't even begin to describe this one. And, unlike the fight club in the movie, you CAN talk about it. Without a doubt, one of the most unusual and unique books ever. Also recommended: BARK OF THE DOGWOOD.
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I haven't seen the movie so all that I can comment on is the book. I was expecting a screed against consumerism and instead I got a mediocre psychological thriller.

There is no real philosophy in this book. We all hate consumerism to one degree or another at one time or another. Men getting together to beat the crap out of one another isn't the answer though. Joyous epiphanies through physical pain isn't the answer, although I understand the necessity of the "fight clubs" as a literary device to hold the book together. I don't know what the answer is, maybe just some good old fashioned self-control; maybe it's better to cut up your credit cards than to cut up your fellow man. I enjoyed the afterword most of all, when the author talks directly to the reader and explains what he had in mind when writing "Fight Club" as a short story, before it became a novel, before it became a movie, before it was taken way too seriously by way too many people. I think "Fight Club" would make a great short story, there's really not enough meat to sustain it as a novel.

"Fight Club" isn't as good as I thought it would be, but if you have a spare afternoon, read it and decide for yourself. Palahniuk's writing style is fairly easy going, and the book is an easy read. Just don't look for any deep message, there is none.
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Format: Paperback
Fight Club was the first Chuck Palahniuk novel I read, and I have since become a die-hard fan of his works. I first saw the movie with my friend and fell in love with the story. She was the one who first recommended reading the novel, because according to her, the movie leaves out too many things, and you need to read the book to get the full impact of the story. She couldn't have been more right. I purchased the book and read non-stop for two days, then watched the movie again. It's truly captivating. The best thing, however, is not the story itself but the way in which Palahniuk presents the story. His writing style is one that is brilliant and unique. The characters he creates are intense, and you manage to find parts of yourself that relate the each of them, parts of yourself and your mind that you didn't even know existed. This book is amazing, as are all of Chuck Palahniuk's novels. Would also recommend the following books: Children's Corner by McCrae, Survivor, Plot Against America, and Bark of the Dogwood.
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Living in a nihilistic society where your life needs to be threatened to feel alive, Fight Club takes us to a place beneath the surface, where we are broken down and bottom out before we can recreate ourselves better and stronger. The relationship between the POV and his mentor/nemesis, Tyler Durden, ranges from hero-worship to pure homoerotica. Palahniuk's first novel is a social commentary that gives the proletariat the upper-hand to change the world through planned acts of random violence. One great, great book.
Also recommended: "Choke," "The Losers' Club: Complete Restored Edition" by Richard Perez, "High Fidelity" by Nick Hornby
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If you have ever felt that a book was written specifically for you and speaks to you on a level that is beyond comprehension you will understand how I feel about Fight Club. The unique qualities are endless. The imagination and details are absorbing. But some of the biggest delights I had with Fight Club came from the ever dark sense of humor... or maybe it was just my dark sense of humor. It is easy to see that this book isn’t for everyone. But like it or not this book has and will continue to ingrain itself in pop culture. It is so easy to sit back and marvel at the genius of Palanhiuk in this book. He exposes points that are not easily talked about and feelings that are not easily explained. If you feel like your life needs a violent shake up I would approach this book with caution. The most sobering thing about this book is that even the exaggerations seem logical. People may describe Fight Club as over the top but it needs to be. In a society where what it means to be a man is in need of a punch Fight Club is an uppercut. Check out my first published work Defenseless
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