Invisible Monsters Remix Hardcover – May 29 2012
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Chuck Palahniuk’s stories don’t unfold. They hurtle headlong, changing lanes in threes and banging off the guard rails of modern fiction. . . . Invisible Monsters makes [Fight Club] seem like a leisurely buggy ride. — James Sullivan (San Francisco Chronicle)
Even more fun to read than the first time around. — Seattle
Subtly moving, this singular writer reminds us that real life is often just as tragic, absurd and fabulously perverse as a Palahniuk novel. — Shelf Awareness
About the Author
Chuck Palahniuk is the author of the best-selling novels Fight Club, Survivor, Lullaby, Diary, Rant, Damned, and many other works of fiction. He lives in the Pacific Northwest.
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As far as the story, well, it is one of my favorites by Mr. Palahniuk. I would put "Invisible Monsters" on par with Fight Club: A Novel and Survivor: A Novel. To read this is a reminder of Mr. P's genius with the written word. Highly recommended for fans, and those new to Chuck Palahniuk as well.
Invisible Monsters Remix is the book form of a movie's directer's cut. This is the way Chuck Palahniuk wanted it to be, totally and absolutely. That means added material, hardcover, a new introduction, etc. The entire experience is a fanboy's dream. Do not pass this up.
The plot of this novel is simple, but made complex via distorted point of view and chronological twisting. A super model gets her jaw blown off in a highway accident and must restructure her entire life. But the genius is in the presentation.
Unlike its predecessor, Invisible Monsters Remix is presented as a choose your own adventure style book. The opening of the old novel (which was chapter one previously) is now found all the way at the end of the book, chapter 41. At the end of each chapter, the reader gets a little note that says "Please Jump to Chapter __".
But note the "please".
Like the characters in his works, Chuck is presenting the readers with a choice. And only by breaking the rules does the fun and shine of this book come out. There are hidden "scenes", and a running commentary that shows of some of Palahniuk's excellent essayist skills throughout the novel. The catch is that no chapters ask you to please go there. You must go on that adventure yourself.
It was a pleasant surprise to receive this book much earlier than anticipated, and now that it is in my hands, I cannot wait to dive immediately back in and do some more searching. Invisible Monsters has undergone the entire Brandy Alexander Witness Reincarnation Project, and come out something new. It has a shiny new look (one of my favorite Palahniuk covers to date), a tough, sturdy spine, and maybe even a little bit of nihilist/romantic philosophy to get you through your day.
As I said earlier, do not pass this up. Even if only to read the added material (an excellent introduction and conclusion, some nice tidbits along the way, too, like an entire chapter ABOUT mirrors that must be read by reflection IN a mirror), this book is worth your 20-odd dollars.
However, this is completely useless on the kindle and I had to return the book. I am stunned that no one thought of this or caught this. Right off the bat (after intro explaining how this is all going to work) it tells me to go to chapter 46. Great - this kindle book has not linked chapters. If you go to table of contents, it is just the first page. As such, it would be impossible to read this as it is supposed to be done.
So, everyone interested in Palahniuk's art, knows the plot: a celebrated fashion model gets shot in the face, survives but loses her lower jaw and re-creates herself, simultaneously discovering shocking secrets of her past that influence present and become a reason for the future. More interesting part is the structure of the novel - all chapters are numbered, but plotline is far beyond the linear order. In the end of each chapter, there's a note like, "Please jump to Chapter...".That was quite interesting, and some of the chapters were even printed backwards to be read through the mirror. The author also advises to mark pages in some way to make sure you went through them all. I was going to do so, but then decided to actually keep a log of chapter sequence instead. Turned out, there was Chapter 41 after preview, and I listed it as a Chapter 1, then there was Chapter 1, which I marked as 2, and so on.
The most interesting is Chapter 31 (21), which reads: "The End". Obviously, that was not the end at all. My log was challenged and I knew there was something missing, something that makes the novel a remix besides its structure. So I went back to my list to find out that chapters 3, 9, 13, 16, 18, 25, 27, 30, 36 and 42 weren't mentioned anywhere before, and I started reading from there. Sometimes, those numbers would go in loops, heading back to the previous chapter, but if you really feel the mood of the novel, you can always find your way. It was delightful to see Chapter 42 being the actual Chapter 42.
Those last chapters were truly new and exciting. The novel ended and the other story began. Story so personal and genuine,, that you can clearly hear author's voice and feel his emotions in the process of writing. Very good ending. As always, strong characters.