So, here we have dull, inert, 40-ish Michel, who hates his job, has no partner or o...more
If you don’t want to read about the gory details of fleshy entangulations and of bodily fluid by the bucketful, then you need to steer well clear of M. Houellebecq. He’s all about that.
The sex is like the worst kind of bad cartoon porn and we can’t possibly be meant to take it seriously. I don’t really know what it’s doing in here. He’s trying to make a serious or black-comedy ironic point about the state of first world/third world relationships and how e...more
The protagonist -- who's more or less to be identified with the author -- enjoys just about nothing other than sex, and even that leaves him numb by the end. Yes yes much of the plot involves his being in love, but he and his love interest (a fantasy creature who always has a cup of coffee for him after his morning blowjob) never seem...more
I don't think I can say anything about the misogyny that hasn't already been said. Yes, it's misogynistic. Boringly, predictably so. We get it; women are stupid, worthless whores. Is it wrong of me to wish for a little more innovation in my morning dose of bigotry?
But look at Valérie, some say. Valérie is perfect (which is a problem in itself). She has it all: youth, outstanding looks, superior skills in bed, a lot of money, a very...more
A vicious and incredibly bleak social critique that is as subtle and incendiary as a suicide bomber. Houellebecq’s horror and hatred of our modern world spills from nearly every page; nothing is sacred and no one is spared. The novel is narrated by Michel, a pessimistic middle-aged man who, to his mind, lives in an era so corroded by consumerism, narcissism and terrorism that genuine human contact or happiness can only be obtained through the blissful abandon of sexual orgasm – even if it’s with...more
What is it? Essentially, sociological investigation and provocation through the lens of the international tourism economy:
I liked holiday brochures, their abstraction, their way of condensing the places of the world into a limited sequence of possible pleasures and fares. I was particularly fond of the star rating system, whic...more
this book is not without flaws, in particular its stra...more
I would like to refer to my friend Jean's...more
e.g. published a half decade before THE SHOCK DOCTRINE, houellebecq writes about a corporate office in suburban France:
"'It's strange,' he said to her. 'Here we are inside the company like well-fed beasts of burden. And outside are the predators, the savage world. I was in S...more
What bothers me the most is his vulgarism and literally - pornography (he could write sex scenes in much more subtle way) and mostly because of this I didn't gave 4 stars.
This book is very well-written (except for the dirty sex scenes that I didn't like), and full of brilliant insights of global politics, economics, sex-tourism, politics and religions, the nature of the individual, the meaning of life.... A very...more
And MH is a philosophical novelist, not the sexist and transgressive novelist whom many critics make him out to be.
Because I don't have a lot of time right now, I'm just going to provide a quotation from the end of Platform, one that I hope will interest you enough to...more
Nemyslím si, že se kniha bude číst za dalších 50 let, protože málokdo asi bude chápat narážky na evropskou politiku, ekonomickou situaci Francie a další dobově podmíněné reálie, díky kterým je kniha dnes tak atraktivní. Kniha je zábavnou a přitom přesnou diagnózu neuróz současné západní společnosti. Nejzábavnější jsou úšklebky nad fungováním velkých korporací, úv...more
(I'd also like to point out I didn't know it h...more
A detached man of critical views and strong sexual needs inherits his murdered father and goes on a trip to Thailand. The writing is provocative, and would be more so if I thought that the author was the narrator. He's annoying, funny, disgusting and sexy. There's a resemblance to Camus, too. And Celine.
The opening part is brilliant, an ode to Camus' "Stranger". I actually read the first few pages a while ago in a cafe and got hooked; couldn't get it out of my mind and finally got the book and started reading it.
I guess Houellebecq is not your traditional novelist -say, like Marquez or Pamuk- with a passion for storytelling. In his first book, "Whatever," he actually confesses that the novel form is not a suitable means to convey the problems of...more
É na Tailândia que Michel conhece Valérie, uma mulher que trabalha no sector turístico (prime...more
Michel is a detached, frustrated and sex obsessed man whose father is murdered by a conservative Muslim (Michel's father was having an affair with the man's sister). Michel goes on...more
I feel delighted that I got more from this book than did Mr Somerville. He's not wro...more