Thursday, May 26, 2005

Insanely Good

I forget how I discovered Stanley Elkin--perhaps at random on the 'net? All I know is this is the third novel of his I've devoured at a rate comparable to Gramma Hilda with the fried chicken at the Bonanza Buffet after church. When I read

I was shocked, appalled, amazed, and amused--my favorite combination(ok, a black comedy featuring a charity trip to DisneyLand for a dozen terminally ill British kids? How does he come up with this shit?). Muthafucka can write like the burning hand of God on an ancient stone wall, and he spins tales like Sheherazade hustling for crack money near Lexington Market. In The Dick Gibson Show he tackles talk radio, and the stories his characters tell within the novel are better than most novels. Feckin' brilliant I tells ya! Imagine a chapter about a war reporter on the tiny Island of Mauritius killing the last dodo so the Japanese can't use it for propaganda, or a nurse having an affair with her patient because he gets a hard-on during enemas. It's too much! Philip Roth meets David Sedaris.