Palimpsest  

Go Back   Palimpsest > Palimpsest Groups > The Book Group Discussions


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 1st Jul 2004, 10:33   #1
amner
Administrator
is beyond help
 
amner's Avatar
 
Join Date: 10 Apr 2003
Location: Cambridge
Posts: 10,918
Default Book 12: VERNON GOD LITTLE by DBC Pierre



As chosen by Col ... cheers Col
__________________
amner is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 1st Jul 2004, 13:00   #2
Wavid
Administrator
befriends strangers
 
Wavid's Avatar
 
Join Date: 10 Apr 2003
Location: Lincolnshire
Posts: 4,553
Send a message via AIM to Wavid Send a message via MSN to Wavid Send a message via Yahoo to Wavid Send a message via Skype™ to Wavid
Default

Do you know, I think I might have a crack at this one.

I started it last year, but never managed to complete it, so it'll give me a good reason to start it again.
Wavid is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 21st Jul 2004, 1:45   #3
rick green
Palimpsestarian
could do better
 
rick green's Avatar
 
Join Date: 4 Sep 2003
Location: houston, tx, usa
Posts: 1,494
Default

I wasn't gonna read this cus my library doesn't have it. But the excerpt from the Guardian cracked me up, so I'll find a way to get a hold of it after all.
__________________
now watch me work
rick green is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2nd Aug 2004, 10:09   #4
amner
Administrator
is beyond help
 
amner's Avatar
 
Join Date: 10 Apr 2003
Location: Cambridge
Posts: 10,918
Default

We're green for GO people...
__________________
amner is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2nd Aug 2004, 15:21   #5
Jerkass
Palimpsestarian
eats too much cheese
 
Jerkass's Avatar
 
Join Date: 16 Dec 2003
Location: USA
Posts: 1,285
Default

Ok, let me start, being new to the discussions and all.

First off--I'm not entirely sure I understand the point of a pen name if, on the cover of one's first novel, one is going to say, 'DBC Pierre is the pen name of [actual name].'

Second, I was annoyed from page one by "f*cken" and "ole," which surely should be "f*uckin'" and "ol'."

And finally, I can't work out why every person of Mexican extraction in the book can pronounce the second 'n' in Vernon, but can't seem to pronounce the first.

Ok...been waiting to get that off my chest for a month.

As a summary, I will say that I eventually got past these initial problems and would classify the work as a page-turner, if I never really did find myself liking it much. Apparently it's supposed to be clever for being a caricature of small-town American life and American media. Perhaps, to an outside audience, it is effective as such. To me, it was not much more than a Gerry-Springer-fication of small-town American life and American media--taking cheap shots at and sensationalising some of the more obvious targets in its sights, and not really ever hitting upon anything original or particularly illuminating.

I may be going a bit far too soon here, but I found almost all of the characters to be shallow (meaning their characters and Pierre's characterisation of them), mostly being over-the-top representations of about four Typical American Folks. I'm not entirely certain, for example, that all of Vernon's mother's friends were necessary, as they all were just about the same person. One of them was slightly more chubby, and Pierre went to great lengths to point this out fairly regularly.

So, all in all, again, I found it interesting enough that I wanted to turn the pages to see what happened. There also were some clever turns of phrase, although they lost some of their effectiveness, hidden amongst hundreds of attempts to impress the reader with sometimes not clever turns of phrase. I would sum up my impressions by repeating something I said to Amner upon finishing it: "So people win awards for this sort of thing, huh?"

Sorry...over to everyone else.
__________________
"I learned never to drink anything out of a jar labeled 'w-i-s-k-i.'"
Jerkass is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 3rd Aug 2004, 18:05   #6
m.
Palimpsestarian
eats too much cheese
 
m.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: 22 Nov 2003
Location: Poland
Posts: 1,298
Default

I'm only about 70 pages into the book but I share many Jerkass's objections. Cheap shots is exactly what I thought at many passages. As to the language I quite like 'fucken' and 'ole' because even if I don't pronounce it mentally precisely in the way intended by the author, IMO it nicely denotes the local accent (he uses 'fuckin' when he tries to render the New York accent -'my pessimist has a New york accent, don't ask me why'). The 'gh-rrr' thing really gets on my nerves though.

OK, I won't comment more before finishing the book.
m. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 5th Aug 2004, 3:19   #7
Jerkass
Palimpsestarian
eats too much cheese
 
Jerkass's Avatar
 
Join Date: 16 Dec 2003
Location: USA
Posts: 1,285
Default

Having just read (er...for the first time) the Book Group Rules, I have found that I have violated Rule #3:

3) We cant talk about the book till either everyone has finished it, or until those who haven't say that those that have, can. I think.

I hereby submit myself for group spanking.
__________________
"I learned never to drink anything out of a jar labeled 'w-i-s-k-i.'"
Jerkass is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 8th Aug 2004, 15:13   #8
Colyngbourne
Administrator
is beyond help
 
Colyngbourne's Avatar
 
Join Date: 30 Apr 2003
Location: England
Posts: 10,732
Default

Just finished it this moment and loved it from start to finish. I'll put more down later but my only main hang-up was the 'Gr-rr' thing and the name 'Gurie'. I'm not too fussed at to whether it was playing with archetypes or supra-fictionalising an outsider's impression of everything Texan etc. There were only a few cracks where I felt it wasn't playing for real and Pierre poked through the thin patches. It felt like I was reading Catcher... and it worked out its own positive ending, thankfully (I was quite pleased to have my expectations upturned in the last chapter, even though the authorial side of how Vernon actually was narrating his story should have indicated this - I was presuming it was something along the lines of The Lovely Bones).

If everyone else has finished the book now, I'll say more in a day (though my compy is away ill and I'm stuck for chances to use Mr. Colyngbourne's).
Colyngbourne is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 9th Aug 2004, 10:42   #9
amner
Administrator
is beyond help
 
amner's Avatar
 
Join Date: 10 Apr 2003
Location: Cambridge
Posts: 10,918
Default

Should be finishing this tonight, so we can have a right ole ding-dong then. Gh-rr.
__________________
amner is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10th Aug 2004, 7:14   #10
m.
Palimpsestarian
eats too much cheese
 
m.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: 22 Nov 2003
Location: Poland
Posts: 1,298
Default

I finished VGL yesterday. Sorry but no... in spite of some good things. I've a rather difficult Internet situation till Thursday but I'll try to post more asap, and lurking I'll be for sure.

(I've realized lately, that you guys either post or don't post; me, I post that I'll post, or can't, or couldn't, or would, or will try. Kind of idiotic, but, whatever.) :D
m. is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply



Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
The Wonderful World of the Web John Self General Chat 2160 11th Feb 2016 21:18
Book Groups Wavid General Chat 43 13th Apr 2010 22:43
Richard Dawkins: The Root of All Evil? John Self Other Reviews 341 3rd Oct 2007 12:24


All times are GMT +1. The time now is 15:09.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.