David Katzman's Reviews > A Greater Monster

A Greater Monster by David David Katzman
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Nov 15, 2011

(Review from the author)
it was amazing
bookshelves: all-time-favorites
Read in November, 2011 — I own a copy , read count: 150

1/3/12 Was listed as the number one book of "10 Hot Chicago Reads For Chilly Nights" on Refinery29.com: http://www.refinery29.com/new-books

12/31/12 Was named a top 10 book of 2012 on The Common Ills blog. According to the post:
"... Beth championed it near weekly in her column for the gina and krista round-robin. It is a jigsaw of writing and you find yourself falling down the rabbit hole. 'A book to ponder and to read for the sheer life on the page,' Beth observed.
12/7/12 A flattering review appeared in The Chicagoist for A Greater Monster. Some highlights:
"This is a psychedelic-Burroughs-dream and an aggravated-Lewis-Carroll-nightmare, a world in which we must continuously re-adjust our bearings....The brilliance of his imagination aside, we must also consider that this novel is a lot to absorb....Yes, the novel is difficult to read at times. Yes, you will have to read certain passages more than once and often read them in various ways. Of course, your face will start to hurt from the perplexed look you'll be wearing over the duration of the book. However, you will be refreshed with new characters and situations every few pages--all of which will be other-worldly. You will stumble onto sparks, which will snowball into a catharsis more than once. Most of all, you will be challenged as both a reader and a thinker. If the pros outweigh the cons for you, then David David Katzman might just be your new favorite author."
5/27/12 Received a thoughtful review in the Psychedelic Press UK here: http://fb.me/1L1NL4ebJ The reviewer says:
"The book’s blurb describes it as 'Innovative and astonishing… [breathing] new life into the possibilities of fiction' and, without doubt, the novel lives up to this description: A psychedelic journey into the splintered mind of a life on the desiring edge."
5/1/12 A Greater Monster has won a Gold Medal as an "Outstanding Book of the Year" in the 2012 Independent Publisher Book Awards. So say the awards: "These medalists were chosen from our regular entries for having the courage and creativity necessary to take chances, break new ground, and bring about change, not only to the world of publishing, but to our society." There were only 10 winners in different categories out of 5000 entries. The judges of the competition sent me the following review quotes from their evaluation:
"Imaginative, explosive and poetic. A real trip!"
"A brain-singeing look at humanity at its strangest."
"Dark and edgy, like a Blade Runner for English majors."
1/27/12 - Another lovely review, this one from from Reader Views critic Paige Lovitt. Full review is here. Last paragraph reads:
Intelligently written and displayed, A Greater Monster is truly like no book I have ever read before. While visions of Alice in Wonderland strayed through the back of my thoughts, this book is so much more. I admire David David Katzman’s creativity and the amount of work that must have gone into creating such an exotic literary gift for readers who like to read beyond the lines of contemporary fiction.
Received a review from Midwest Book Review. Here are the highlights:
[When] we see something unusual, we rarely expect it to be the tip of the iceberg. A Greater Monster is a novel from David David Katzman who brings readers into a unique alternate reality that has many twists and turns ... With unique humor and plenty to think about, A Greater Monster is a fine and much recommended choice.
Several writers were kind enough to read my book in manuscript form before its release. They had the following to say:

“Brilliant, insane and utterly unique, A Greater Monster offers pure sensory stimulation, verging on sensory overload. The graphics, concept and narration are pause-worthy, and they all combine to create literary indulgence at its best—its most interactive. The narrator in A Greater Monster doesn’t hold your hand and guide you; he doesn’t ask you to like him. Instead, he delivers a sharp uppercut to your chin and asks you to stop cowering, open your eyes, and fight back. You will. He’ll make you.”—Jen Knox, author of To Begin Again (2011 Next Generation Indie Book Award winner)

“Beautiful mystic-schizo DayGlo wordage. Poetic prose that befuddles, enchants, and amuses the reader at the same time.”—Lance Carbuncle, author of Grundish Askew

“This is bizarro fiction at its most intense. It contains scenes and unique designs that seem engineered by some Mad Hatter and Chuck Palahniuk cross-breed.”—Lavinia Ludlow, author of alt.punk

“After David David Katzman’s brilliant first novel, Death by Zamboni, a masterclass in the uses to which comic writing can be put, comes a novel that couldn’t be more different. A Greater Monster opens in a world that’s immediately and recognizably ours … before spinning off into a spiritual (and carnal) quest that reads like Alice on acid, while channeling every trash sci-fi nightmare Creepy Tales had to offer.”—Charles Lambert, author of Scent of Cinnamon and Any Human Face

A Greater Monster is a highly creative and original story combining poetry, imagery, and prose—all working seamlessly without a break in momentum.”—Charlie Courtland, author of Dandelions in the Garden

“I can’t express how brilliant my favorite scenes in A Greater Monster are. In this extraordinary work, Katzman pushes language to do things, which are truly astounding. This is where Artaud meets Williams S. Burroughs meets Lewis Carroll in an obscene, violent dissolution of character, plot, and setting. A Greater Monster dismantles the foundations of narrative, of the human subject as master and center of time and space, reason and language, and the word is transformed into image, into an indigestible thing that both resists easy consumption and is utterly entertaining.”—Carra Stratton, Editor Starcherone Press
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Quotes David Liked

David David Katzman
“Touching is just electrons repelling. Nothing can touch. Ever.”
David David Katzman, A Greater Monster

David David Katzman
“Realization: We render time by stitching together moments--flipping pages in the book of consciousness presents a continuous stream. Our senses too slow to realize the separation of moments, like a strand of pearls through eternity.

Time is terrifying, time is unspeakable. Clock-time lies down between moments ... but distance warps with velocity, time bends with velocity. Frames of reference. Are not absolute. Are selfish. A private reality. Clocks have a life of their own. Framed by references.”
David David Katzman, A Greater Monster

David David Katzman
“Without a mask to shape us, what would we face anyone with?”
David David Katzman, A Greater Monster

David David Katzman
“Lies erase. Lies are power. Power to be had by you. Truth is relative, no? Power defeats truth, paper, scissors. Are you faux real?”
David David Katzman, A Greater Monster

David David Katzman
“one might call this state ["youth" (but that seems inaccurate)] "remembering" but memory is quite eerie like caging a dream, and when I recite the rote details the real event slithers further from me because the telling of it reshapes it, every touch alters it, until it is unrecognizable except as a story [a doppelganger (immediately not myself) a writhing poltergeist summoned to snap at me from the darkness~or benign but vague, like a whisper making it better to remain silent, but I can't~the past is a narrative (that writes us) immanent in the present [proving there is cause and effect in the immaterial (the mythic becomes carnal by leaving marks on the body)] symbol by symbol, building up invisible scars”
David David Katzman, A Greater Monster

Reading Progress

01/11 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-9 of 9) (9 new)

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message 1: by Cecilia (last edited Jun 13, 2012 04:03PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Cecilia WOW, David, David!!! In fact...you DID "WOW" them!!! A SUPER BIG congratulations to you, David!!! You gotta be walking on a high high right about now!

I'm starting my copy ASAP so I can enjoy the WOW factor along with everybody else! I already have about 10 people in mind to suggest this one to just from the reviews!!!

I'm not even your mum or any relation...but I'm proud of you...as I'm sure your real mum and all your relatives, friends (of which I count myself!) & family are. Great, stupendous reviews...be wasteful, print them out...cover yourself in them...roll around in them for awhile & soak up the praise! You deserve it!

As always...Cheers!

David Katzman Hahaha! You are very kind, Cecilia! Thank you!

Kelly H. (Maybedog) Congrats, congrats, congrats!!!

Now, you just have to go find anyone who didn't just love your books and trash them so you can one up Melissa Douthit who doesn't have any awards to back up her arrogance.

Wait, wait, I forgot. You're nice and make friends with people interested in your books! I get confused sometimes. I don't have any awards or fans, just sarcasm and a lot of exclamation points!!!

David Katzman lol!

David Katzman Thank you, Frances! We are doing last proofing this weekend so Jason is going to start making the books next week.

Nefariousbig Fantastic! It will be my favorite gift to myself!

Nefariousbig CONGRATULATIONS! A good ending and a great beginning makes a year worthwhile. Hugs, and Happy Nee Year!

David Katzman Thank you so much, Frances. I hope 2013 will be a good year for you! A best as it can be.

Nefariousbig Yes, I'm looking forward to lots of new adventures!

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