Everybody Hurts

Danielle Trussoni in the New York Times Book Review:

Screenhunter_16If you believe you are by now immune to gory novels, here’s one with enough malevolence to give even the most hardened readers nightmares. “The Seven Days of Peter Crumb,” a chronicle of the final week in a psychopath’s life by the British actor and writer Jonny Glynn, is gruesome, obscene and utterly disturbing. It is also absorbing and well written. Reading it, I fought the urge to throw up. Needless to say, I was transfixed.

Mixed reactions are inevitable in the presence of one of the more repulsive characters in recent memory. Peter Crumb spends his days bludgeoning, raping and dismembering. He gets cranked on opium and horse tranquilizers and has a scatological obsession that requires him to give detailed descriptions of his bowel movements. In addition, his first-person account is interrupted by a second personality, egging him on. Crumb has little control over where his mind (and thus the novel) will veer at any given point. The result is an elegant contrapuntal stream of consciousness so brutally spiky and internal that the reader (like Crumb’s victims) wants to plead for reprieve.

More here.