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Attack Of The Unsinkable Rubber Ducks Hardcover – 2 Aug 2007
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Sharply satirical and poignantly funny, this is a gripping and highly entertaining read. (Time Out)
Chris Brookmyre is a genius. (Mirror)
Brookmyre has no equal. (Maxim)
Exhilerating linguistic fluency and keenly subversive intelligence (Scotland on Sunday)
Bad language. Scatalogical humour. Razor wit. Convoluted plot. High readability. It's the new Christopher Brookmyre thriller.See all Product description
Top customer reviews
I raced through this book in a couple of days. The plot was gripping and surprisingly believable given the subject matter. It is an unusual presentation from Brookmyre, and I must admit it kept me guessing for some time. There was one plot point that I saw coming, but my feeling is that the whole book had been leading me towards it and that the author's intention was for me to pick it up when I did rather than when the big reveal came along later.
It differs from previous Jack Parlebane novels in a number of ways, the most obvious being a lack of swearing, gore, and strong Scots dialect, all of which gives it a more authoritative and less comedic tone. It is told in the first-person, but from three main viewpoints, which at times appears deliberately confusing as you don't know at the start of each chapter which of the characters you are on board with. The new characters are all strong and well-rounded and I especially liked the many slightly geeky references.
Overall I found it to be a really enjoyable and even educational book and would certainly recommend it, although there will be those readers who won't be satisfied by how it all turns out at the end.
It might be slightly toned-down and lacking the usual barrage of one-liners, but Brookmyre's mordant sarcasm and bitter cynicism is still there, and there is no slacking in the writer's mischievous debunking of the establishment. If anything, his target in 'Rubber Ducks' is a rather more pertinent one than the usual government-led conspiracies, small-time ned gangsters and anonymous terrorist organisations. In his targeting of the fraudsters and tricksters who call themselves mediums, spiritualists and psychic entertainers, it's not too much of a stretch to see he is attacking the credulous public's growing tolerance and acceptance for the unscientific beliefs of Creationism and Intelligent Design and their encroachment into the nation's classrooms. (A few sideswipes at the Holyrood and the Daily Mail don't go amiss either).
Anyone looking for the familiar explosive Brookmyre pyrotechnics is going to be disappointed by this new book, but those who consider the author a talented writer will be delighted to see him develop his style and range and put all that bitter rage towards something more meaningful than the enjoyable but all-blurred-into-one homogeneity of his previous books. It's not perfect however. Brookmyre attempts a few sleights of hand of his own here which are delightful to see play out - his research into the tricks of the trade is evident and he makes a convincing case - but the major revelations are rather predictable in their outcome. Still, it's a welcome new change of direction and a progressive one that is very promising indeed.
Brookmyre is at his sarcastic windmill tilting best with this book. Git it up yer - a stoater.
I cannot agree with those who scored this low, it cannot be for reasons of poor plot or development, but each to his own. Not suitable for Christians, Muslims, Spiritualists or other believers in the absurd etc etc you have been warned.
A very, very entertaining read.