novel by Chuck Palahniuk (1998, first published 1999) (no spoilers in this writeup)
"My goldfish is swimming around all excited inside the fishbowl on the fridge, so I reach up and add a drop of valium in its water."
The novel starts off in a cockpit of a plane. The main character (and narrator) of the novel is talking into a black box (which, as pointed out both in the book and in one of my earlier writeups isn't black at all, but neon orange), or the cockpit voice recorder. Knowing that everything said in the cockpit will be recorded, the narrator finally gets a chance...
The narrator has left all the passengers on an island somewhere (repeating that he is not a murderer), and has the pilot jump out of the plane after getting back in the air.
Alone in the cockpit of a Boeing 747-400 luxury jumbojet, the narrator starts to tell the story of his life, on page 283 of the book. Chapter 46. Curiously enough, both the page numbers and chapters of the book go backwards - from page 289 to page 1. From chapter 47 to chapter 1.
"Amphetamines are the most American drug. You get so much done. You look terrific, and your middle name is Accomplishment"
The narrator has a rather cynical view on life as an entity, with dry, sarcastic remarks about a number of facts of life. Black humour at its very best, if you ask me.
In general, the book has much of the same tone as Fight Club had. A bit sinister, a few pranks going way overboard, but also a sharp kick to the shins of organised religion.
"Long-term, we are all going to die. Then our bodies will rot. No surprise there. Short-term, we're going to live happily ever after."
What can I say? I started reading this book right after midnight. It is now 6:15, and I finished it about half an hour ago. To say that it is a literary masterpiece would be to take it a bit far - It offers no revolutionary new ideas or very profound statements, but the book is definitely good for keeping you on the edge of your seat.
While the page count dwindled from three digits to one, and eventually realising that I read the whole book without a single break. Completely captured captured in its beautifully realistic view of the life in corporate America the detachment from life in general, the constant pushing for McReligion and McHappiness.
I strongly recommend reading Survivor. Despite its relative simplicity (compared to Fight Club, at least) it is still a very good novel which will grace my bookshelf for the years to come.
"You can't trust me around anyone's brother with a telephone or a rock"