Lights Out In Wonderland

Lights Out in Wonderland, the new novel by DBC Pierre

That’s right, literati. The best author no one talks about, DBC Pierre, has just released his third novel, Lights Out in Wonderland. It is, according to Pierre, the finale of a trilogy. Don’t worry if you haven’t read the first two books seeing as they have nothing to do at all with each other—not characters, not theme, not even style, really. You should read the first book, Vernon God Little. You should run to your bookstore and order it (because they probably won’t have it). Then you should devour it and marvel at how Pierre wraps the story up with possibly the best ending in modern fiction. Then you should try (not as hard) to read Ludmila’s Broken English, his second novel. It is really quite good and if VGL hadn’t been so damned amazing, I would have truly been blown away by it as well. Then you should go back to the bookstore where you were smart enough to have ordered all of these titles at the same time and get two copies of Lights Out in Wonderland, one for your own brain and one as a thank you to me for changing your life by introducing you to such great work. I prefer hardcover, but a nice trade paperback would suffice.

On a semi-related note, do any of you make book recommendations as cautiously as I do? I have been burned too many times by people who ask me what they should read, borrow the book off of me and then 1) lose it 2) never read it at all or 3) read about 30 pages before giving it back (elephant-eared, for fuck sakes) and telling me that it really didn’t “do it” for them. Well, you know what really doesn’t “do it” for me? You, you book-borrowing know-nothing elephant-earing motherfucker. Get a goddamned bookmark, a playing card, a scrap of paper for crying out loud. Go to the library and stay out of my study.

On a completely related note, Leigh, I want my Lethem back when you are finished. Bookmark?

Editor’s Note: Hmm, Yumyum sounds a little stressed. His Lethem (which absolutely did “do it” for me) is not elephant-eared! It has, however, seen better days—the pages began falling out the first time I cracked it. It has also, I confess, been re-loaned (but to the most responsible reader and borrower I know, so no fears there). Nonetheless, if it completely disintegrates before it makes it back to him, I will replace it! Now Tasty, go get a massage or something!

10 thoughts on “Lights Out In Wonderland”

    1. My shortlist of favourites is… Kurt Vonnegut, Herman Hesse, the indispensable Canadian duet of Timothy Findley & Robertson Davies. I would add Leonard Cohen though he has only written two novels and I’ve only read one. Similarly I’ve only read two Louis de Bernieres novels, but Captain Corelli’s Mandolin is definitely one of my favourite books ever (if all you know is the movie, you are seriously missing out)

      Also James Joyce. I’ve yet to find the patience to even attempt his heaviest stuff, but I really love Dubliners & Portrait of the Artist.

  1. A Confederacy of Dunces, Paul Quarrington, JP Donleavy, Hunter Thompson, Kurt Vonnegut, House of Leaves, David Foster Wallace, Johnathan Lethem, Jonathan Safran Foer, Clive Barker, Robert Heinlein, Catch 22, Howard Zinn, Shel Silverstein, Gordon Korman and Dr. Seuss.

    I read one Louis de Bernieres, something about priests and a small village and a new crusade, to be brief. The name escapes me. It was phenomenal right until the last ten pages.

    1. Catch 22 is my favorite book, hands down. I like Vonnegut, and Heinlein, I enjoyed Safran Foer, and I read Dr Seuss to my daughter almost every day. However, your list leaves me feeling a little inadequate.

      I think I’d probably enjoy stuff you recommend, though.

  2. Jon, let me be more specific and single out some books by these giants.

    A Confederacy of Dunces- possibly the funniest book ever written. Pulitzer Prize winner. Only complete novel John Kennedy Toole ever wrote.

    Paul Quarrington- Home Game, King Leary or Whale Music. PQ passed away earlier this year. In my opinion, he was Canada’s greatest humourist of this generation.

    JP Donleavy- The Ginger Man. Tales of debauchery. Madness. Hilarious.

    Johnathan Lethem- Motheless Brooklyn, Fortress of Solitude, Chronic City. A fresh writer with amazing stories and characters.

    House of Leaves (by Mark Z Danielewski)- A real mind-fucker. Google it. It is too hard for me to describe. The ONLY amazing book by MZD.

    David Foster Wallace- Infinite Jest- another one you should google for the same reason. One of the best books I have ever read. Easily the most research I have ever seen in a novel.

    The other ones are fairly standard. And please, don’t feel inadequate. Slapping our literary dicks on the table should be fun, not demoralizing. Plus, I am sitting right next to my bookshelves….it was very easy for me to look over and spy some of my faves.

  3. What, literary dick-slapping? It is a very useful exercise for a budding author. Harder for a lady, I imagine. But, rest assured, should you need assistance organizing a literary tit-slapping competition, ol’ Tasty here will gladly act as a judge, referee or innocent bystander.

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