Jacob's Reviews > Liver: A Fictional Organ with a Surface Anatomy of Four Lobes

Liver by Will Self
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's review
Oct 26, 2009

really liked it
bookshelves: 2007-2009, first-reads, i-own, short-fiction, culling-the-herd
Read from November 16 to 20, 2009

November 2009

In "Foie Humaine," it's always a Tuesday afternoon at the Plantation Club, the most cunt-filled private pub in London, and proprietor Val Carmichael (the cunt) is drowning the barman's liver in vodka--and he might succeed, if his own (liver, that is) doesn't fail him first. Elsewhere, in "Leberknödel," a woman with terminal liver cancer goes to Zurich to end her own life--only to mysteriously (miraculously?) recover after changing her mind. An advertisor in "Prometheus" re-enacts an old Greek myth (much to the delight of a liver-eating vulture), and in "Birdy Num Num," everyone in Tony Riley's little drug den, especially Billy Chobham, is completely fucked up--just ask the virus that's infected them all.

I've heard of Will Self, and remember seeing a few of his story collections in stores, but I just added him to my To Read list (Volume 3) and promptly forgot. But I found Liver advertised as a GoodReads First Reads giveaway, entered on a whim, and won. Awesome. Will Self has some interesting stories to tell, and the impressive vocabulary with which to tell them (although you may, briefly, doubt that when learning about the many and varied uses of the word "cunt" in "Foie Humaine"). It's hard to judge a writer on four stories/novellas alone, so I'll definitely give Self another try.
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04/01/2016 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-6 of 6) (6 new)

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message 1: by Alan (new)

Alan he's big over here, always on telly as a pundit, a caustic, sarky bastard. One time he was caught shooting up on Blair's plane, I think..
I've read a few things by him, and intend to read more - he's funny and erudite - but always find other things to read somehow.

Rand it's a novel, not a collection.

Jacob Felt like a collection.

Rand The general consensus seems to agree with you. I thought the same thing until the end of the book, when all the parts converged.

Jacob Gotcha. I didn't care much for the last two sections, especially "Birdy Num Num," so I probably skimmed a bit.

Rand okay now i think i was wrong, on account of Birdy Num Num being included in the collection of stories/novellas that his [Undivided Self]. Apologies.

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