By: Hannah Shreve
Honestly, I don’t even know where to start with this book. I’m not entirely sure what Chuck Palahniuk was thinking when he wrote this, considering it’s basically like an ongoing really confusing lifetime special. Because of this, I won’t be giving a summary considering that I’m not really sure where to start, or to stop for that matter. The plot is pretty nonexistent to begin with, instead of following the normal plot arc where the story builds only to have a huge scene of information release towards the end, we have a constant stream of information throughout the entire book. One man, James Sullivan from The San Francisco Chronicle says: “Chuck Palahniuk's stories don't unfold. They hurtle headlong, changing lanes in threes and banging off the guard rails of modern fiction. This time he has really done it. Incredibly, Invisible Monsters makes the author’s jarring first novel, Fight Club, seemingly like a leisurely buggy ride.” Well… I can’t disagree with the first part. It certainly does “hurtle headlong”, but I’m not entirely sure that's a good thing. The main character was a model before the accident that fuels the plot and characters, so in the beginning of the book she warns us, the readers, that the book will be like a Vogue magazine. “Don’t expect this to be like the kind of story that goes: and then, and then, and then. What happens here will have more of a magazine feel, a Vogue or a Glamour magazine chaos with page numbers on every second or fifth or third page. … Don’t look for a contents page, buried magazine-style twenty pages from the back from the front. Don’t expect to find anything right off. There isn’t a real pattern to anything, either. Stories will start and then, three paragraphs later: Jump back to page whatever. Then jump back. … No matter how careful you are, there’s going to be the sense you missed, the collapsed feeling under your skin that you didn’t experience it all. There’s that fallen heart feeling that you rushed right through the moments where you should have been paying attention. Well, get used to that feeling. That’s how your whole life will feel some day. This is all practice, None of this matters. We’re just warming up. “ Pretty chilling if you ask me. But she is telling the truth, because even after reading the book very closely, I’m not entirely sure of the timeline, the characters true names, or how it all adds up. The story sets the scene for a glimpse of her life five years ago, then we switch to the present, then just a little in between the two. The characters are constantly taking on new identities making it very hard to keep all the facts straight.
All in all this book is chock full of drama, so much so that there are times that you will consider rereading it, for fear that you missed something. But you didn’t really it’s just how the story goes. It’s an unapologetic trainwreck, and you will either love it, hate it, or be confused about what you read (I know I am). So to sum it up, this book is drama filled (not the good kind if you ask me), confusing, and fairly inappropriate. My final thought here is just, read some reviews before you start this book. You’ll want to know what you’re getting yourself into, I wish I did.