Mallory's Reviews > Invisible Monsters Remix

Invisible Monsters Remix by Chuck Palahniuk
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Jun 17, 2012

it was amazing

I hadn't read Invisible Monsters for years, so I was really excited to see the "director's cut" of the book listed on Goodreads FirstReads, and even more excited when I won a free copy for review purposes. Chuck Palahnuik never ceases to fill me with a sense of wonder and a sense of dread. It must be really, really frightening to live inside his brain.

There are a few major changes from the original text to the "remixed" version, but you could read either. The story seemed mostly the same, with the major difference of being forced to skip from chapter to chapter like being trapped in some sort of deranged Choose-Your-Own-Adventure novel in which there was only one choice. And as compelled as you will find yourself to keep reading, you will often be unhappy with the choice.

Palahnuik forces us to consider the nature of beauty and what it means to truly be oneself. This is not a new theme for the author--in fact, Invisible Monsters was his first novel--but it remains an important one. Palahnuik creates characters who I am strangely drawn to as a reader, and it can be painful to watch them self-destruct over the course of his pages. Interestingly, however, (and perhaps because I've read more of his works, which have bleaker endings) I found this one more uplifting than I had originally mentioned it, with a slight chance for some salvation at the end. And while it may seem depressing to indicate that the only true way to be who you are is to construct your own reality, I take it back to the Choose-Your-Own-Adventure motif; Make your own way, and you'll be OK.

And then there was the new stuff! Extra chapters, hidden throughout the narrative (if I hadn't noticed some backward text I might have missed it completely, not thinking to mark chapters as I read them) give new tidbits about the characters and the author himself.

Overall, such a fun experience to read (if a little frustrating and unnerving as a reader to never know where in the narrative you were or if you were getting all the information you should!) and highly recommended.
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Reading Progress

Started Reading
June 11, 2012 – Finished Reading
June 17, 2012 – Shelved

Comments (showing 1-5 of 5) (5 new)

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Will IV Good review. One thing caught my attention, where you said "in fact, Invisible Monsters was his first novel," but I think Fight Club was his first, followed by Survivor. You have me interested in checking this out, though, as it's been years since I've read the original as well.

Michael Mckenzie Invisible Monsters was the first book he ever wrote, third (I believe) that was published. Hopefully that clears up any confusion.

Will IV Michael wrote: "Invisible Monsters was the first book he ever wrote, third (I believe) that was published. Hopefully that clears up any confusion."

Oh cool, I didn't know that. Thanks!

Sarah we're reading this for book club this month! time for your triumphant return?

message 5: by Jason (new) - added it

Jason Quick and easy review! Love it.

Would you recommend I read the original or this one, the ‘re-stylized version’? I'm sure there are different ways to evaluate the 'you should read this version', but I am particularly interested in your option, because, as you mentioned, you’ve read quite a bit of his work.

Semi-related, what other works by Chuck would you recommend? Which novel would be your, “READ THIS ONE FIRST” choice. I’ve read ‘Fight Club’ because everyone read ‘Fight Club’.

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