Lullaby
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Lullaby

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3.71 of 5 stars 3.71  ·  rating details  ·  57,375 ratings  ·  1,949 reviews
Carl Streator is a reporter investigating Sudden Infant Death Syndrome for a soft-news feature. After responding to several calls with paramedics, he notices that all the dead children were read the same poem from the same library book the night before they died. It's a 'culling song' - an ancient African spell for euthanising sick or old people. Researching it, he meets a...more
Paperback, 260 pages
Published June 5th 2003 by Vintage (first published July 28th 1999)
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Fight Club by Chuck PalahniukInvisible Monsters by Chuck PalahniukSurvivor by Chuck PalahniukChoke by Chuck PalahniukLullaby by Chuck Palahniuk
Best Chuck Palahniuk Books
5th out of 20 books — 288 voters
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Best Transgressive Fiction
21st out of 192 books — 300 voters


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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Jeff
Aug 05, 2007 Jeff rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who dye their hair black.
Oh Chuck Palahniuk, why do the kids love you? Years and years and years have passed while I have worked in a bookstore and every single year is the same, some kind of cool hipster guy or girl will come in and ask for anything by Chuck Palahniuk, bestowing praises upon his writing. Okay, I get it. The hipsters love him. Brad Pitt was in a movie based on a Palahnuik book, which was about crazy wacky anarchy, which the young hipsters love.
So, I finally sat myself down and cracked open this lovely b...more
Kemper
To most people a lullaby is a soothing song meant to help coax a child to sleep, but in Chuck Palahniuk’s hands it becomes a death spell that can kill anyone. Of course, that’s not twisted enough for Chuckie P. so he had to throw in some witchcraft, necrophilia and dead babies to really make it a party.

Carl Streator is a newspaper reporter working on a feature about infant crib deaths, and he has his own tragic experience in that area. When Streator sees a book containing an African chant at se...more
Matt
Aug 07, 2007 Matt rated it 1 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: no.
Shelves: badnovels
Chuck has never been a very good writer. He comes up with interesting ideas, uses them as a vehicle for a shitty novel, then I read it, and am disappointed every time. I have since stopped reading his books but my girlfriend says they still suck.
Chloe
When you pick up a Chuck Palahniuk book you know that you are going to plunge ever-so-briefly into a raging torrent of absurdity, horror so whimsical that you laugh even as you cringe, and insightful looks at contemporary living. It seems a cheap shot to call his work formulaic, but once you've read through 6 or 7 of his books, the pattern emerges and you have a vague idea of what to expect.

It was Lullaby that finally brought this realization home to me. You have the protagonist, a man who seems...more
Michael Breen
Jul 29, 2007 Michael Breen rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Everyone
Shelves: goodstuff
The war of who can crank their radio louder than their neighbor. Avoiding the big picture by looking at things too closely. Big Brother filling your head with marketing noise 24-7 so you he doesn't have to worry about what your thoughts cause he created them. Control. Unlikely families. Journalism. These are the tried-and-true themes that Palahniuk has worked before in other forms in other books and they all come together nicely with Chuck's dead pan, sarcastic sense of humor. The premise of the...more
Sean
The only novel by the acclaimed author of Fight Club that I've read, this book is more or less an essay concerning the contaminating effects caused by the constant "noise" to which Americans have grown accustomed in their lives. Be it mass media, advertisements everywhere one turns, or talking heads always telling one what to do and when to do it, this noise is everywhere, and utterly inescapable, the author argues. While I generally agree with the author's displeasure over constant sensory over...more
Nate
Mar 27, 2008 Nate rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone with a great sense of humor and/or Palaniuk fans
Shelves: favorites
Palahniuk makes another social statement(criticism) with Lullaby, but this time with more humor than he's mustered in any of his other books. It definitely helps to be somewhat cynical about the modern world, if you want to enjoy this book (good rule of thumb w/ any C.P books). But even if you love life, there's much to appreciate in the this book, mainly the fact that it's hysterically funny and the events that occur that are really bizarre.
The story revolves around the main character who stu...more
O.M. Grey
May 15, 2013 O.M. Grey rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: No one
Brilliant. That's the word, the only word, that came to mind as I started reading Palahniuk's Lullaby. I struggled to keep reading, as I was too impressed with the prose. As a writer, reading Palahniuk made me feel like a dancing monkey in comparison.

By the time I hit the halfway mark, I struggled to keep reading for an altogether different reason. It had become too fragmented, repetitive, and just plain boring.

At the beginning, this passage stopped me. Full stop. Absolute. No going further out...more
Lauren
Lullaby was my first book to read by Chuck Palahniuk. I was so very impressed with his writing style and his well-crafted story.

Assigned to investigate Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, a reporter uncovers an ancient culling spell. When he learns the power of the spell, and the damage it can do, he sets out with some other very interesting characters, to remove this poem/spell from every library and bookstore in the country.

In my opinion, the power of Palahniuk's style is in his use of repeated phra...more
Catten
Palahniuk, the Portlander (Oregon, not Maine) who wrote the cult classic Fight Club, has four other novels. One of them is Lullaby, which might or might not be just as off-the-wall as its more popular brother.

The book opens with a scene from a real estate office. Helen Hoover Boyle and her assistant Mona listen to a police scanner for deaths (and potential sales) and field calls from frightened new homeowners who have bought what Helen calls "distressed" (haunted) houses. Helen sells the same ho...more
Michele
Aside from not knowing how to pronounce this author's last name, reading this book was quick and easy (I read it in three days worth of bus rides to school and back). But just because it's an easy read doesn't mean it's not thought provoking.

Palahniuk wrote Fight Club which was made into a movie starring Brad Pitt and Edward Norton. (If you haven't seen the movie, go see it - it combines the uncertainty of a Sixth Sense or the confusion of a Memento with the light hearted social critique/comment...more
Nicholas
Aug 10, 2008 Nicholas rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: First time Chuck Palahniuk readers.
Attention Readers of Edgy Black Writings, of Chuck Palahniuk

If you've read Lullaby and have felt bored you are not alone.

OKay, so this is my fourth Palahniuk book and I enjoyed the first three so much (Survivor, Choke, & Invisible Monsters)and I was very excited to read this. I got through most of it and felt really bored and unsatisfied. I mean I love the idea of the culling song and having the power to kill by voice even if you just say it in your head but I think the characters and the pl...more
Guido
Un romanzo basato su un'idea non nuovissima ma comunque interessante: una filastrocca che uccide all'istante la persona a cui viene recitata, e personaggi sufficientemente folli da sfruttare senza troppi ripensamenti un potere simile. La filastrocca, che consente di dare libero sfogo a rancori repressi da anni, potrebbe essere la "cura" per una società che non sa trovare momenti di silenzio, fatta di individui che si illudono di pensare liberamente, governati in realtà dal Grande Fratello dei me...more
Marco Tamborrino
Divertente e terribilmente reale. Diventa forse un po' troppo confuso alla fine, ma comunque un ottimo libro, indubbiamente superiore a Fight Club. Sublime il personaggio di Helen Hoover Boyle.
April
I really need to sort out my feelings with Palahniuk. Since Fight Club bewitched the eyes and souls of friends, I was convinced one way or another I'd end up favoring him above other authors as some sort of writing genius.
However, I read Invisible Monsters a few years ago and I simply couldn't get into it. It remains abandoned on my shelf with an array of other books that have failed to attain my interest. Maybe it's because I was too young at the time and I just couldn't be bothered to finish...more
Rayna
Oct 04, 2012 Rayna rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2012
I recently stated to a friend that I had serious reservations about reading a Chuck Palahniuk novel. I, like many, do not like to be typecast into certain roles. Due to my age, interests, and lets just admit it, "quirks," I am a perfect candidate for membership in the Chuck Palahniuk fan club. Yet, for the majority of my adult life thus far I have been fighting the urge to, "drink the kool-aid," my scenester peers seem to enjoy so much. How very scenester of me, right? I mean come on, I gave the...more
Tim
Like all of Palahniuk’s work, Lullaby is a fairly strange, twisted take on society. In this case, the focus is on folklore and the rather corrupt moral compass that seems to drive modern man.

For anyone who’s read Palahniuk before, you probably already know what to expect from his writing. He uses a fairly informal tone and relies on short, rapid sentences to keep the action moving. His characters are painted in vivid, near comic terms at times, and their motivations are fairly transparent. The...more
Dana
My interest in Palahniuk was selfish: since suffering the loss of a loved one, experiencing a mental breakdown at PDX airport and, two days later, being terminated from my hellish job and thrown blindly into unemployment with no health insurance, no savings and a laundry list of neurological pills that needed popping (prescribing, and purchasing, too...) I was desperate for a distraction.

This book is aaaaallllllll about the distraction, the noise, and the general clusterfuck that spins on aroun...more
Missy
The Basics

Carl Streator is an investigative journalist, and he has been tasked with finding a pattern among babies who died of crib death. He does find a pattern. The same book of poems in each house, marked on the same page. It turns out this is a culling song, and anyone who hears it dies. Now that Streator has this power, controlling it is turning out to be a challenge.

My Thoughts

Palahniuk wrote this book as a reaction to his father’s death, and it does concern itself heavily with the topic o...more
Troy Blackford
I'm not really able to put my finger on exactly why I didn't enjoy this more than I did. It's a good book, but it can never escape the feeling that it could have been an amazing book. There are so many weird and interesting ideas that are thrown into it without being developed or a part of the story - you get the sense that there are ideas for about six amazing short stories that are just casually tossed into this book for window dressing.

There's a lot to like here, but I found myself borderlin...more
Whitney
It's been a few years since I read this book but I just happened to see it in my recommendations and wanted to nip this in the bud before GoodReads decided to do me anymore favors.
I remember reading this with expectations built on everyone telling me how great and awesome it was. Even though I wasn't into spreading my literary wings at the time, I gave it a go because who doesn't trust their friends? Liars, all of them.

Lullaby is like some pretentious, avant-garde art piece that is supposed to...more
Kristina King
Hi. It's been a while.

After reading Galapagos, I set off to read some short stories. I read "Colony" by Philip K. Dick (awesome!) but then I had enough. If I am trying to read a load of books and write about them, reading short stories is antithetical.

On to a review: my first experience of reading Chuck Palahniuk wasn't bad, but it didn't help me understand why so many people enjoy his work. That was Choke (which, BTW, the film comes out next month). I really had to understand the hype, so I rea...more
Silver
This is my second book, the first being Fight Club, and I am fast becoming a fan of Chuck Palahniuk. This was a fascinating book, the kind of book that grips the reader by the throat and doesn't not let go to the end. I could not wait to see where it was going next, and what was going to happen.

One of the great things about this book was that it was so many different things at once. It is a little bit horror, a bit of satire, a bit of a mystery, a bit fantasy, and a love story all rolled up into...more
Jenni Lou
The only real knowledge I had about Chuck Palahnuik was though the film Fight Club. (Which a terrific flick and excellently directed and photographed. It’s gotta be in my top 25-50 of all time.) I had never read one of his books before. Until now. I checked Lullaby out of the library as I was browsing around looking for something new and interesting. The librarian who checked me out remarked that he is one of her favorite authors and she owns all of his books. So I was intrigued. And this book?

I...more
Theresa Flores
Imagine a plague you catch through your ears.

Lullaby is about a culling song found on page 27 of Poems and Rhymes from Around the World. Once thought or spoken, the culling song will kill its target-- may be an enemy or may be just an innocent victim. Carl Streator, the novel's narrator, is now on a hunt with a woman named Helen Hoover Boyle, to search for all the remaining copies of the culling song to destroy it-- or so he thought that was all there was.

4.25-4.5 stars.Classic Chuck Palahniuk...more
Jerry Ghazali
Bayangkan jika salah satu bait-bait koleksi puisi yang kamu baca rupanya mentera pembunuh dan bait-bait itu tanpa sengaja pula dilagukan oleh ibu bapa untuk mendodoi bayi tidur, padahal membunuh lalu dikaitkan pula kematian bayi itu dengan Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), kematian tanpa punca.

Bayangkan jika bait-bait puisi itu mula bermain dengan sendiri di dalam kepala kamu dan orang berdekatan kamu pula maut tanpa punca dan secara tak langsung kamu menjadi mirip kepada malaikat maut.

Bayang...more
Angeld01
Jul 03, 2008 Angeld01 rated it 1 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: no one
Very disappointing book.I have always wanted to read a Chuck Palahniuk book. I think that "Flight Club" (the movie) makes a lot of good points about the state of society etc. I got this book as an audio book & I still couldn't finish it. If I had to hear Carl Streator count one more time...And I cannot stand in descending order, Helen Hoover Boyle, Mona & especially Oyster. Who thinks he's an activist, but is really just a pretentious a-hole. Make your characters interesting, but serious...more
Valerie
Feb 05, 2008 Valerie rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Valerie by: Kim
I'd never read anything by Palahniuk before Lullaby, and I found his voice and style to be original - I was drawn in by the fact that it was unlike other books I've read, although I did think he could be a little heavy-handed getting his point across. Yes, I know - media saturation is bad! We're becoming homogenized! We're waiting to be fed our thoughts by the TV! I HEAR YOU, CHUCK!

That said, there were enough funny, witty, scathing remarks and situations in this book that made me laugh, or just...more
Olethros
-Duérmete, niño… y tú, jefe pesado, y tú, policía inoportuno, y tú, inocente… -.

Género. Novela.

Lo que nos cuenta. Carl Streator es un periodista que investiga sobre la muerte súbita infantil, síndrome que le arrebató un hijo, para descubrir que el poema de la página 27 del libro “Poemas y rimas del mundo entero”, del que se imprimieron 500 copias, tiene el poder de matar a aquellos a los que odia quien lo esté leyendo.

¿Quiere saber más del libro, sin spoilers? Visite:

http://librosdeolethros.blog...more
Marat M. Yavrumyan
Առաջին անգամն է, որ չգիտեմ էլ ինչ գրեմ, հակասականության առումով։ Եթե հաշվի առնենք, որ գիրքը գրվել է, եթե ճիշտ եմ հիշում՝ սպանության ու դրա դատավարության, որտեղ Պալանիկը նաև վկա էր, դրանից հետո ու ենթադրում եմ, որ դրա ազդեցության տակ, ապա անպայման սպասում ես կյանքի փիլիսոփայություն ու սպանության իմաստը, մահվան իմաստը, ապրելու իմաստը՝ ապրելու ջանք թափել թե չթափել, կորուստը ապրելու, հաղթահարելու փորձերը, հաղթահարել արժելու կամ չարժելու իմաստը ու նման բաներ, դրանք հասկանալու փորձ։ Կա այս ամենը գրքու...more
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Palahniuk 49 259 May 02, 2013 05:18PM  
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2546
Written in stolen moments under truck chassis and on park benches to a soundtrack of The Downward Spiral and Pablo Honey, Fight Club came into existence. The adaptation of Fight Club was a flop at the box office, but achieved cult status on DVD. The film’s popularity drove sales of the novel. Chuck put out two novels in 1999, Survivor and Invisible Monsters. Choke, published in 2001, became Chuck’...more
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“Big Brother isn’t watching. He’s singing and dancing. He’s pulling rabbits out of a hat. Big Brother’s busy holding your attention every moment you’re awake. He’s making sure you’re always distracted. He’s making sure you’re fully absorbed.” 385 likes
“Maybe you don't go to hell for the things you do. Maybe you go to hell for the things you don't do. The things you don't finish.” 304 likes
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