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One of the Guys
Miles Derry is a recovering alcoholic who, in his sole pursuit to make his monthly child support payment, has taken on a string of dead-end and often seedy jobs. One night, while working at the Little Pink Bookstore, he comes across a stiff -- in every sense of the word -- who turns out to be a chaplain in the U.S. Navy. Choosing to take the chaplain's identity as a way ...more
Paperback, 320 pages
Published September 26th 2000 by Harper Perennial
(first published 1999)
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This novel is a darkly comic and satiric look at life in the navy. It reminded me of House of God because of its cynicism and obscenity. The premise is entertaining and the main character is satisfyingly deep, even if the rest of the characters aren't. I suspect this book would be better known if it had a stronger ending and didn't stray so close to the pinnacle of satiric military novels: Heller's Catch-22.
"One of the Guys" was a fast read - a seedy and quirky story that reminded me of Chuck Palahniuk's works. The story moves quickly and is an intriguing setup. I also appreciated the view of life on a ship for a Navy chaplain (or someone faking it). While the work will not be on my top ten - or even 100 - list, it's an insightful, comfortable read.