Book Recommendation / Review : Geek Love

I have a new book to recommend to you today! (see the last one here) But this time it’s a novel.

Let me preface by telling you this : I AM THE PICKIEST READER EVER. No joke. In high school I read a lot because I was bored. Extra time in class? You could find me reading. Study hall? You could find me reading. On the bus? You could find me reading. I read a lot of serial killer books (loooved Helter Skelter!), Hunter S. Thompson and biographies on Kurt Cobain. (I have literally read every book written in English about him/Nirvana). But somewhere along the line I got picky.  I now find it really hard to get interested in a book. If it isn’t weird, gory or shocking – I’m not interested.

I discovered Geek Love by Katherine Dunn by finding it in a book of lists. It was in a list titled “Top Ten Disturbing Books” along side a few books from my very favorite author Chuck Palahniuk. I immediately ran over to find it, and read the back. It peeked my interest but not enough for me to buy it right away. Eventually I got desperate enough for a good book that I went back and bought it. After getting started I tore through the book, completely engrossed and intrigued.

The plot (quoted from Geek Love’s wikipedia page);

“The novel is the story of a traveling carnival run by Aloysius “Al” Binewski and his wife “Crystal” Lil. When the business begins to fail, the couple devise an idea to breed their own freak show, using various drugs and radioactive material to alter the genes of their children. The results are Arturo (“Arty”), a boy with flippers for hands and feet; Electra (“Elly”) and Iphigenia (“Iphy”), Siamese Twins; Olympia (“Oly”), a hunchbacked albino dwarf; and Fortunato (“Chick”), the normal-looking baby of the family who has telekinetic powers.
Oly tells the story of her family in the form of a novel written for her daughter Miranda.”

Sounds completely ridiculous right? That’s because it is, but in the best way. Katherine Dunn has such a way with words and you will be able to picture each character perfectly right down to the smallest details. The way the characters all looked (perhaps even felt?) to me was so incredibly vivid.

It’s been about a month since I finished the book but I really did want to blog about just in case someone is in the same picky book reader boat as me and has trouble finding things to get lost in. (plus I can’t get it off my mind!) If at least one person reads this post and goes “oh my gosh, that is so my style of book” – because it’s certainly not a book for everyone – I will be one happy little kitten!

I liked it so much it even earned a spot on my special shelf next to all my Chuck Palahniuk books. 😉

You can find Geek Love here! If you read it let me know what you think! that is if you’re not totally freaked out by the whole plot to begin with! 😉
xoxo

Author: Kaylah

Just a green haired gal from Cleveland, Ohio.

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  • I work at a thrift store, and Geek Love caught my eye. I didn't pick it up though, until I read your review! Can't wait to read it and SO glad it was still there months after I first saw it! It was meant to be.

  • I LOVE GEEK LOVE!!! That is my all time favorite book ever! I've even bought a first addition signed by her, eleven days after I was born, weird. Her other books are good and definitely have that Dunn mouth-watering appeal but Geek Love takes the cake and shoves it in your face every time…
    I can't help but ball my eyes out every time I get to the end

  • Oh my gosh, I remember reading this review when you first published it and I convinced my aunt to by it for me for my birthday (7 months ago). I started reading it 3 weeks ago and just finished it today. Holy crap, this was one of the best books I've read in so long. It was very shocking and eye-opening and incredibly well written (and I must say… the end was a DOOZY). I was a little hesitant to read it at first, but it ended up being nothing like I expected – it was so much better. I just wanted to say thanks for introducing me to a new favorite. <3 ("_")

  • I know I'm late to the party on this post but I've just started getting in to your blog and while walking through the forest of posts I got hit it the face by this branch of a review! YES. SOMEONE ELSE who loves Geek Love as fervently as I. I'm obsessed with freak shows and circus politics, so it was perfect for me – but I think you're right, it's not for everyone – when I finished I gave it to a few of my friends in a fit of evangelical excitement and a few of them were too weirded out by it to finish -although compared to the whole literary canon its really quite vanilla. OEDIPUS. LOLITA. THE TURN OF THE SCREW. Now that's fucked up. Anyway, I'm so glad you adore it too – your blog is beyond awesome, thanks for sharing such wonderful and quality content with us all! 🙂