I voted for this book in the most recent Book Club poll because Craig Ferguson’s autobiography is hugely enjoyable and one of the best ones I’ve read/listened to (I have the audiobook, narrated by Ferguson himself), and as a result, I was curious and excited at the chance to read a work of fiction by him. Unlike some who have already reviewed this book (by now quite a few, I’m yet again behind on my reviews), I didn’t really watch a lot of Ferguson’s stuff as a late night host (although I’ve seen quite a few fun interviews he’s done on YouTube and the song he did about Doctor Who). I’m not sure exactly what I was expected from the book (the blurb is not very informative), but it certainly wasn’t what I actually got.
This book was a completely different reading experience from most things I’ve read (and as long time followers of my blog know, I read quite a lot). It’s a whole bunch of things, all of them weird and strange, none of them particularly enjoyable. There’s a road trip element, there’s magical realism, surrealism, there’s various literary allusions (to Dante’s Divine Comedy, among other things). It’s a satire covering celebrity culture, organised religion and cults, the media and there’s a whole load of swearing, other coarse language and violence. Sadly, the only characters Ferguson sees fit to develop in any way are all male, women are all given short shrift, but if they’re lucky they escape being sexually violated and/or murdered. There is so much misogyny, sexism, homophobia (there may have been transphobia too, I’m not going back to check) and racism in this book. Ferguson seems obsessed with sex and/or violence and while I’m sure he intended it as edgy and provocative, wanting to shock the reader – it all just comes across as needlessly vulgar and quite sad.
Full review on my blog.
Bingo #5: (Underrepresented: Let’s Talk About Love, Cover Art: A Duke By Default, #Cannonbookclub: this, Not My Wheelhouse: Running Like a Girl, So Shiny!: My Plain Jane)