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Pontypool Changes Everything Paperback – 29 Oct 2009


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Product details

  • Paperback: 276 pages
  • Publisher: ECW PRESS (29 Oct. 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1550228811
  • ISBN-13: 978-1550228816
  • Product Dimensions: 12.6 x 1.7 x 20.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 589,407 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

3.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By SeaGoat under Sirius on 29 Feb. 2012
Format: Paperback
Word is Virus. William Burroughs may have approved. An utterly enthralling film led me to the book at the outbreak-source of the movie. The film was the most creative, unusual (and least bloody) "zombie" flick for years, that had this seen-it-all film nut glued to the screen. The book has not disappointed. I give it 5 stars for its originality. Thirty years ago my critical method lectures and seminars on post-structuralism, semiotics and the shifting sands of sounds would have breathed easier with this guide to surviving the word virus. Do see the film too, Pontypool [DVD] [2008]
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 1 Aug. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
If you're looking for no-effort, comfortable reading, this isn't it. If you've seen the movie and now look to the book for a deeper explanation of the events that dog Grant Mazzy and Sydney Briar, look elsewhere. Pontypool Changes Everything is, by turns, a zombie novel, a literary painting, an exploration of semiotics and a series of vignettes. It has room in it for chapter-long indulgences explaining the nature of the AMPS virus and for fully-mobile, self-aware zombie newborns. The concept - a virus that exists in meaning, infecting reality and contracted in the transition between dream and waking, communicated by language and understanding, is interesting, but ultimately hard to take in without some prior understanding of the terms involved. It requires a glossary, and a willingness to see the familiar zombie genre translated into the metaphysical. Burgess even adds an afterword admitting that this isn't the book he would write today, so perhaps the movie, which he also scripted, is the better story. Give it a go, but be prepared to feel, occasionally, as if you've turned up for the wrong lecture.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Graham Tilston on 1 May 2010
Format: Paperback
This book is fantastic, I watched the film and loved it then found out it was based on a book so had to read it! Great service got to me quickly!
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By Swamptin on 2 Aug. 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A very enjoyable, if quite confusing, read. I found it a struggle at times to fully understand what was going on, but never struggled to read on. The author himself dislikes how the book reads, but to be fair it adds to the atmosphere of the story. The film adaptation is worth a look too, but it doesn't cover the same scope as the book.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Kuzman Katkalov on 29 Nov. 2009
Format: Paperback
Pontypool makes sense by triggering hidden associations between facts, circumstances and memories, creating a fragile, isolated and seemingly consistent world of its own. Any attempt to decipher it in detail leaves you with an open mouth and a dead stare, while your brain struggles with pieces of phrases from the text, unconsciously mimicking the symptoms of the sublinguistic virus depicted in the book. Without a fixed, absolute point of view it paints the plot as a bleak, layered construct that obviously serves a different purpose than entertaining you with a zombie story, offering an unusual metaphor every second sentence. Plot turns like death, disease and murder of a character in the book are being treated without drama, but as common circumstances and are easy to miss. The realization comes minutes later, makes you halt and return to the line where a womans face gets eaten off her and wonder how you could have missed it. The second part is easier to read and is closer to the horror genre than the beginning of the book, but is by no means your popcorn splatter trash.

The afterword by Burgess offers great insight about his intentions and what this book actually is - a "magnification of the least recognizable parts of his thoughts and feelings". He himself admits that the book is by no means a great one, and I have to agree; but it still was a great experience for me to read it, and definitely a recommendation for those who liked the movie.
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