MJ Nicholls's Reviews > Great Apes

Great Apes by Will Self
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's review
Jan 29, 2010

it was amazing
bookshelves: novels, sassysassenachs, tortured-artists

We asked three pupils in Class 2B at Roswell High what they would do if they woke up as an ape:

Daniel sez:

“I wish I was an ape in the evenings. If I was an ape in the evenings I would hang around the school gates spooking the teachers. I would knuckle-walk up to that sandal-wearing nonce Mr Almott and slap him so hard around the gums he’d need a new set of teeth to learn basic Esperanto. In the evenings I would sip tea on a tyre suspended from a tree and go “Hoo-haa!” while masturbating so hard my legs would snap off.”

Phil sez:

“If I was an ape I would have corrective surgery and become Phil again. I like being Phil because the other kids in the class know my awesomeness as Phil gets them places, gets them into social places where the cool people hang out and share nectar, Dolmio pasta sauces, back copies of New Scientist, and stylish hombergs as worn by Frank Sinatra. I love being Phil and being an ape would crush the essential me-ness that makes me (Phil) great. ”

Nicola sez:

“If I was an ape I would talk to the other apes about how great it is to be an ape. We’d scratch our bums and gurn at tourists and swing from branches and rut without shame and perform basic tasks that make humans think we’re like them only hairier and uglier. Then I’d do a poo in the shade and feel bad about having a zookeeper clean it up but secretly smirk that I’d made a human being mop up my excrement and I’d giggle like this: “Hoo-ooh-ah-ah-ah-ah-ha!”


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Comments (showing 1-4 of 4) (4 new)

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message 1: by Mike (new)

Mike Puma Daniel, Phil, and Nicola get around.

message 2: by Beth (new)

Beth Peter Dickinson's "Eva" poses just this question. Eva is in a traffic accident, her body injured beyond repair. Her parents decide to have her brain/mind/personality transferred into the body of chimpanzee and Eva wakes up in the hospital unprepared for the change. It plays out from there. Excellent middle school level reading.

message 3: by MJ (new) - rated it 5 stars

MJ Nicholls Will Self for juniors! What a novel idea!

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