Lights Out in Wonderland
Gabriel Brockwell—aesthete, philosopher, disaffected twenty-something decadent—is thinking terminal. He's decided to kill himself—but not immediately. His destination is Wonderland. The style of the journey is all that's to be decided.
Traveling between London, Tokyo, and Berlin, Gabriel is in search of the bacchanal to obliterate all previous parties. His adventure takes...more
The story begins with Gabriel Brockwell - dreamer, quasi-misanthrope, unfulfilled artist, paradoxically both a pursuer of ultimate decadence and an anti-capitalist - deciding to kill himself... but not quite immediately. The next 300 pages tell the fantastical tale o...more
There's a lot going on here. DBC Pierre really goes beyond what he did well in Vernon God Little and takes it to the next level: The little footnotes, the recipes, the little system of neologisms he's created, they all add up to make for a notetaking-worthy read.
Sure, there are some parts where it starts to slow down (the entirety of Tokyo; the beginning of Berlin), but it quickly picks up speed and heads to a completely ludicrous, yet satisfying wrap-up.
And yes, there are some heavy-hand...more
There isn’t a name for my situation. Firstly because I decided to kill myself. And then because of this idea:
I don’t have to do it immediately.
Whoosh, through a little door. It’s a limbo.
I need never answer the phone again or pay a bill. My credit score no longer matters. Fears and compulsions don’t matter. Socks don’t matter. Because I’ll be dead. And who am I to die? A microwave chef. A writer of pamphlets. A product of our time. A failed studen...more
I bought it a year ago, at the Parisian Shakespeare & Company bookstore and I have no idea why it took me so long to get it started.
Never in my life have I come across such a relatable character and so many plot twists. I'm sitting here all stunned, in all honesty: I don't know what to say. I'll just leave you with a few quotes:
"There isn't a name for my situation. Firstly because I decided to kill myself. And then because of this idea: I don't have to do it im...more
I both liked and disliked the style of writing. Mostly, I loved it. It was descriptive like a poet, but methodical too. But I didn't need the need to use so many asterix*. The odd one or two where information is needed, sure. But I found so many, p...more
However, I think the book is a bit marmite-y and it just wasn't for me and my poor tired brain this week! The writing is incredible. It's addictive and evocative and as you follow Gabriel Brockwell through his self enforced final days on earth you travel at break neck speed through loathing him and loving him and certainly feel like you've travell...more
There were moments that I thought a paragraph, or 2-3 pages flowed nicely.
Sometimes the writing felt so disjointed I had to put the book down and come back for it to make sense. Though I actually rather liked the style of using foot notes for separate rants - and that was an aspect o...more
In LOW… I didn’t. I legitimately hated…I can’t even remembe...more
Gabriel isn't really a likable guy though. He's mo...more
But there's genius bizarre and then there's just bizarre, and this is unfortunate...more
The book starts with the story's narrator informing you the read that he is about to kill himself. Well, ok I am now hooked, tell me more!
It continues with his journey and making his final huzzah with friends and places around the world he wants to spend time...more
This has been sitting on my bookshelf for about a year, and nothing could have made me go through with it other than the prospect of being stuck on a desert island with no other books... which is more or less what happened. I'm quite glad that I did- it's not as annoying/pretentious/choppy as it seems in the first couple of pages.
Actually, the writing is really beautiful at times. Bordering on insane, but pretty. And the book is, honestly, very crazy. But something makes it st...more
Oh, I don't know. I wasn't as enraptured with this book the second time around as I was the first - it lost me toward the end - but I still very much loved and enjoyed it, and I came off it feeling excellent, so I guess the five-star rating shall remain. To me, it's not as narratively cohesive as Vernon God Little (which I also reread a couple weeks ago) but it's a little more, I don't know, thematically substantial? I don't even know if I believe that. I just.. really, really rel...more
The book is all about excess, how to get it, and how to keep it going. On this level, it's a kind of meditation on th...more
The main thing I liked was Gabriel's absurd situation, it ends up dragging you in and I found I wanted to keep reading to see what the twists of fate would have him doing next. The suicidal aspect gave it a nic...more
Pierre's observations are sharp, scathing, and (depending on your point of view) pretty close to the mark. (This, I think, is most obvious in the footnote thingies, so I'd urge everyone...more
I hated Catcher in the Rye. I know it's supposed to be some kind of iconic book about about teenage angst or something, but to me Holden Caulfield was just sort of a whiny twit who created most of his problems himself. Boohooo! My parents don't understand me and my lack of effort is resulting in poor school performance and OMG SOMETIMES ADULTS LI...more
The protagonist of this boo...more
'Lights Out In Wonderland' mimics the experience of getting drunk almost precisely. It quickly gathers momentum and insanity, and rips to the heart of our current state and time in a way you wouldn't expect. It's both the greatest argument for and against our existence.
Then it's over, and we come to the reason th...more
Pierre was awarded the Booker Prize for fiction on 14 October 2003 for his novel Vernon God Little.
He is the third Australian to be so honoured, although he has...more