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A Postmodern Belch

3.82  ·  Rating details ·  45 ratings  ·  33 reviews
This edition of A Postmodern Belch has been discredited. Pending article 9.6 of the Creative Commons Licence, portions of this work contain improperly brushed syllables taken from a 1978 edition of A Postmodern Belch and inelegantly buffered clauses taken from a 1997 edition of A Postmodern Belch. This edition of A Postmodern Belch is adapted from the 2007 edition of A Pos ...more
Paperback, 334 pages
Published October 9th 2012 by The Estate of Lydia Dutch
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MJ Nicholls
Oct 09, 2012 marked it as my-writing
Interview with The Author

MJ: You are The Author of this undergraduate folly, correct?
MJ: I am.
MJ: What did you hope to gain by self-publishing a no-holds-barred tricksy embarrassment like this?
MJ: Love and acclaim.
MJ: Ha!
MJ: Just kidding. I hoped to free myself from the self-conscious novel. From the tiresome limitations of self-reference.
MJ: Did you succeed?
MJ: Once you let doubt and awareness creep in you’re never free.
MJ: Tell us about the novel.
MJ: Three characters, Harold (based on me), Ly
Nathan "N.R." Gaddis
Oct 09, 2012 added it
Recommends it for: Gilbert Sorrentino
Recommended to Nathan "N.R." by: Greggg
Shelves: gr-author-hype

riverbelch, past Isold and Mark’s, from post of mod to belch of bay, brings us unfortunately to a terrible farce. -- Jimmy Jamesons Coo-Caw

"13THREE (3) more Likes and it'll be my most popul’aire Review : even more popul’aire than that one I wrote for the MAX-DFW-BIO." -- That Guy Who Always Thinks Of The Children.

“Belch is a sort of Glass wherein beholders do generally discover their own g.b.d. in their own f.a.c.e,; which is the Chief Reason for that kind Reception it meets with in the world, a
Ian "Marvin" Graye
What Would Happen If I Tried to Enter Someone Else’s Novel?

Earlier this year, this triplasian 333 page volume was delivered to my modest residence by a vehicle whose only identifying marks were a muted trumpet logo and the acronym W.A.S.T.E. (I think that's an acronym? MJ, help me).

My wife, FM Sushi, was typically suspicious that I had received a parcel from somebody called "Lulu", well "", to be precise.

Knowing my private affairs as she does (she manages my Gmail account for both remune
David Katzman
Nov 16, 2012 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: South-Parkian humor, intellectual cleverness, hatred of commercial fiction & outstanding wordplay
Recommended to David by: Me
This review will be a review of this review. Let’s begin by reviewing that first sentence. It contained a significant redundancy. Could it have been shortened to “This will be a review of this review”? It could have been but then it wouldn’t have had as much impact. And the “this” becomes slightly ambiguous. This what? This word? No, as it stands I think it was the most striking introductory sentence I could come up with to indicate that what follows the first sentence will be a review of the re ...more
Scribble Orca
Oct 17, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Seriously?
Recommended to Scribble by: We're obviously not friends

A few weeks ago, a Mr B. May sent me a putrid decaying fungus on behalf of author M.J. Nicholls. The specimen in question is languishing on my shelf of current vivisections, tagged, naturally, Purposefully Debauched Fantasies. Odd how prophetic that hastily constructed euphemism resolved itself to be.

Since this particular fungus has a tendency to sprout monstrous recursions of itself (excuse the use of the word monstrous, the author scatters it magnanimously, along with other appendages of an ex
Oct 09, 2012 rated it really liked it
Nate Dorr's innate natural ability to review novels has emanated a novel review of a novel kind of novel... kind of... novel... Has he opened a dorr door he cannot close? Have I deconstructed the deconstructivist construction of a review before I've even read the thing? And does that make it a pre-post-review reading or a pre-post-erous review reading, or... glurg!

Oops! Sorry, that was a little belch trying to escape.

Has MJ invented Belchin' literature (as opposed to Belgian
Stephen M
All the characters represented in this review, including the first person singular, are entirely fictitious and bear no relation to any person living or dead.

Upon finishing that literary-bottom-feeding, Necrophagous waste of paper known as A Postmortem Malaise, Ms. Aerin Pithe-Bot propelled that postmodern prattle across her room in a perfect parabolic arc; it moved for some five whole seconds at a rate of fifteen miles per hour until its isomorphic accent and decent was ended on the edge of the
Arthur Graham
Nov 27, 2012 rated it really liked it
334 pages of pure drivel that I enjoyed tremendously from start to finish. Nicholls may be one of the most self-conscious writers I've ever read, but that's not to say I imagine him flexing his scrawny muscles in the bathroom mirror, wincing at his pale, pustular reflection as he compulsively combs his ever-thinning hair like some present-day Prufrock personified. Rather, he is self-conscious in the sense that he seems to understand his worth as a writer, which can ultimately be boiled down to t ...more
First off, I have to disclose a conflict of interest here: I am full of gooey, mushy, warm treacle coloured feelings for MJ, ever since he waved his electronic penis at me in the first minute after I joined GR a year ago and stumbled on his Italo Calvino ‘if on a winter night a traveller....’review, which, may I say, is a classic and ought to be required reading for all GRers. The comments thread there is also a hoot, and not least because it was there that MJ first fell in love with my back bre ...more
"Well, Manny," said Manny, "You've finished the book. Now obviously you want to post a review? Here, I've got a few all made up. Just say which one you like best. How about this? 'A dazzling tour de force that masterfully pays homage to Joyce, Pynchon and Sterne, while simultaneously deconstructing-'"

"Bollocks," said Manny without even waiting for the conclusion.

The rest of this review is available elsewhere (the location cannot be given for Goodreads policy reasons)
Oct 09, 2012 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Megha by: Mother of three recently widowed Scots

Samuel Beckett wrote a play in which nothing happens, twice. MJ Nicholls wrote a novel in which nothing happens, four times. The novel instantly created ripples in literary circles and many a scholars have already written dissertations on this work. Out of jealousy, some forgotten author is said to have started a rumor that Nicholls locked up her three children - Greg, Lydia and Harold - in a matchbox and made them write the novel for her. To avoid any unpleasant questions regarding this controv
Oliver Katz
Jan 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I knew the author MJ Nicholls for a brief and regrettable period in Edinburgh (2004-2007). He spent his undergraduate degree leching after pretties with his unwashed hair and line in barely mumbled Wildecisms: “Hey. Like The Velvet Underground? Like Sonic Youth? Like inarticulate plebs from backwater shitholes who wash twice a year?”
I was a Jewish gayster from London who could speak English and had no interest in social alienation and self-loathing. Our one point of convergence was postmodern
Gail Winfree
Jan 23, 2014 rated it really liked it
I’ve just finished reading MJ Nicholls’ “A Postmodern Belch” and still trying to figure out what I’ve read. This is a book with an attitude. Actually, it’s a book with many attitudes. It’s a book that’s been around since before the beginning of time and keeps appearing in infinite versions, all with attitudes.

At first, it might seem that the author is out of control; but in fact, he is in complete control. The thing is we don’t know who the author is, nor what he/she is in control of. Could the
Nate D
Oct 09, 2012 marked it as read-in-2012
Was this tirelessly self-conscious and self-destructing novel designed to drive the reader into revolt? It anticipates such, at least, as a crowd of Readers actually put in a late appearance to complain (capping earlier complaints from several different authors).

There have by now been postmodern deconstructions of essentially every element of writing and storytelling, but less effort has been expended on deconstructing the idea of postmodern deconstruction. This is, then, an exhausting exhausti
Oct 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: books-with-me
I am the most important character in this novel, A Postmodern Belch. I gave this novel three stars for the bits I am in because I was always taught by my folksies to be modest, and because, quite honestly, I do not have the imaginative capacity for values greater than three. My name is Greg and in this novel I play a character (funnily enough!) named Greg who finds himself embroiled in many larks with two other characters, Lydia and Harold. Since starring as the most important character in A Pos ...more
Mar 25, 2014 added it
Shelves: 21st-century
This book sets out to be--and succeeds in being--the most self-conscious novel going. It is principally a work of humor, while it tackles some of the challenges and dilemmas that postmodern writing raises. The author has a knack for the humorous venting of spleen. While he is entertaining us, one gets the impression that he has some sincere bitterness towards *both* the cynical commercialization of art *and* empty psuedo-art frippery, and thus he satirizes both while simultaneously struggling to ...more
PLEASE NOT: This non-review of A Postmodern Belch refers to the edition with the Imbecilic Supererogatory Belch Number (ISBN) 9781291980349 (nine trillion, seven hundred eighty-one billion, two hundred ninety-one million, nine hundred eighty thousand, three hundred and seven-square). Published: 173 days ago by The Estate of Lydia Dutch. Edition language: English (sort of). Mass: 560 grams. Dimensions: 15.24 centimeters by 22.86 centimeters by 334 pages. Paperback with adhesive binding. Color: bl ...more
Oct 16, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: brain-candy
Postmodern is defined as noting or pertaining to architecture of the late 20th century, appearing in the 1960s, that consciously uses complex forms, fantasy, and allusions to historic styles, in contrast to the austere forms and emphasis on utility of standard modern architecture. Allusions is the word that sticks out most to me. I have never read anything like this sort of book in my entire life. I have to be honest and say, I had a difficult time following it. But my overall opinion would prob ...more
Oct 21, 2012 rated it did not like it
A Nephronimous Botch.

As Artaud claimed in 1923, "we are born, we live, we die in an environment of lies" - but factual inaccuracies are another matter. Of course one cannot expect every fiction writer to have a working knowledge, especially one that has biology in it. Neither, though, would one anticipate such flagrant exhibition of this lack. It could be argued that the author, insofar as his fairyland makes no attempt to adhere to reality, has waived his responsibility to the laws governing th
Oct 09, 2012 marked it as to-read
Sonovabitch. I just laid down actual money for this. We'll see what shows up in a week or two. I might just find an oversize package sitting on my front porch one day, and out'll jump a lithe, quick-tongued Scot demanding room and board gratis. He'll rifle through my things, don my suits, diddle my women, eat my food, leave trails of crumbs and bottles and torn pages from my books about the house, and then be gone like a ghost. I just know it. Nothin' for it but to Waldo Jeffers the lad before t ...more
David Lentz
Nov 20, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I am tempted to attempt a non-review of this non-novel but the book is just too good and I don't want to be misunderstood of dealing frivolously with a major literary contribution by a young novelist who has shown real flashes of genius in an early novel. I also would advise readers that, if you haven't read much of the post-modern novelists, then you may want to read a few from the 1960's or later, and then read this novel thereafter. Nicholls has a few postmodern names to drop, including Pynch ...more
Craig Stone
Mar 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This is the kind of book publishing companies pretend they print.

A Post Modern Belch deserves massive recognition as a work of complete brilliance. A book about every book ever written that doesn't need to resort to dirty tactics like linear storytelling and A + B = C. You don’t need to have a history degree on literature, you don’t need to have read every book penned to understand it – you just need to have an imagination and a sense of humour. In a nutshell, it’s a book where the author loses
Written after reading part of the first sentence. I was incited to do so. The stars are a combination of hearsay and my expectation of the capabilities of MJ. I am Scottish in my use of stars - that is, they may be free, but that is no reason to be extravangant with them - and hence my praise may be regarded as lavish.

A conversation which might have taken place with J. an autistic person of forthright opinions, the precise delivery of which is completely predictable.

J: Why did you make me read t
Pareyeah Myxios
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sean DeLauder
Jan 20, 2013 marked it as to-read
I'm not sure what I feel about this book other than I feel it very strongly. If I am ever capable of parsing the genuine from the false, either in the content of the book or of these reviews, it will confirm with some certainty that the final thread tying me to my sanity has at last frayed and broken. I suspect this is precisely what the author intended. ...more
Ferdinand Magellan
Oct 22, 2012 rated it did not like it
Epitaph on an Inquirent

Direction, of a kind, was what he was after,
And the books that he wrote were easy to understand
He knew Gilbert Golly like the back of his hand,
And was greatly interested in barmy elites;
When he laughed, suggestible monitors burst with laughter,
And when he cried, the little children chased him through streets.
Jan 26, 2015 rated it really liked it
3.5 rounded up because:

a) it finally ended (or did it?) YES, I'm saying it did, because I read all the gr reviews before the book, and I'm not going to count any possible (probable?) dialogues in my own mind as extra material (available here at $29.99 per..) No. I will drown them with alcohol. And then I will burn them. with fire.

b) alcohol. for some reason not related to this book I thought it might be interesting/healthful/beneficial to ... take a break from this substance (and perhaps others)
Peter Hayes
Jul 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Great imaginative novel (or non-novel yes yes yes ok) that smashes Pynchon and Vonnegut and others in the balls while at the same time slapping them on the butt affectionately. Or maybe that was all in my mind, who knows. Great book nonetheless.
Ned Rifle
Oct 17, 2012 marked it as to-read
Reminded me a lot of Henry Miller.
Oh, mistakenly said i had finished this, rather i found extended reading on a screen nigh on impossible. Would have to see it as a book to have a chance.
Review of PM Belch


I am one of the readers of this book not authored by the author. I think he criticised his own novel to the extent that anything else is drowned out, which I feel was the point. My favourite character is no one because this novel does not have a tangible concept of character, which again, is the point, yet strangely this makes them unforgettable. Now I'll always be thinking of Lydia, Gregg and Harrold; thanks for that whoever the real author is. My theory is Lydia Dut
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A man who wrote A Postmodern Belch, The House of Writers, The Quiddity of Delusion, The 1002nd Book to Read Before You Die, and Scotland Before the Bomb. His new novel, Trimming England is coming forth in 2021.

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