8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: Vernon God Little (Paperback)
From the press coverage at Booker time, this was clearly going to be a novel I would either enjoy enormously or become extremely irritated with. Fortunately it proved to be the former, despite some loss of conviction and narrative energy in the mid-late stages. A rather odd comment on the blurb says that it is 'the only novel quite unlike any other' (so what does Tristram Shandy resemble?), but it is true that it is difficult to categorise: at some stages it even lurches towards the detective story. As a rites of passage story it holds up pretty well, but as a satire on contemporary American society it is hilarious: unfair, perhaps, even obvious, but still hilarious. The most remarkable feature is the essential goodness of the main character: not the likeliest or most fashionable quality for a foul-mouthed, anti-social teenager, especially one on the wrong end of a murder hunt. In my ignorance of the other contestants I can't say whether this is a worthy Booker winner, but, if entertainment is one of the criteria, it was bound to be a contender.