Ever since I read his short story "If Armstrong Were Interesting," which is certifiably the funniest four pages in the history of English literature, I've hunted down and devoured every book of his I can find. Most of his longer works aside from the faux-biography Lint , itself a masterpiece are sort of comedic beatnik-noir-cyberpunk tales of improbable criminal organizations and their various doings. Very hard to describe to someone who hasn't read them - Ayle I've always enjoyed Steve Aylett. Very hard to describe to someone who hasn't read them - Aylett's style is unique, built as it is on the unexpected, the non sequitur, the artful defiance of logic at which he has a achieved a Zen-like mastery.
Here, Aylett presents an imagined autobiography, told from the perspective of a young adolescent and his surreal, dysfunctional family. Hilarious and beautiful, and oddly haunting despite its rapid-fire humor and cartoonish narratives. For some reason, this book seems to be available only as a British import. Nov 27, Adam rated it really liked it Shelves: A more accessible Aylett.
Of course accessible is a relative term when concerning Mr. Written in the form of a childhood memoir but not really resembling that description.
If the show or comic it is based on was scripted by Thomas Ligotti or Bruno Shultz and then you watched it while consuming real A more accessible Aylett. If the show or comic it is based on was scripted by Thomas Ligotti or Bruno Shultz and then you watched it while consuming really spicy chili and then you transcribed the dreams you had in between waking with extreme heart burn later that night, it resembles that. Apr 21, Michael Norwitz rated it it was amazing.
Bigot Hall is the nightmare home of a family most people would rather forget. Uncle Burst's belief that his face is made of pasta is one of the milder notions with . A review and a link to other reviews of Bigot Hall by Steve Aylett.
I've read a couple of other books by Aylett, but none come close in my affections to Bigot Hall, which paints a surrealistic portrait of a sort of modern, punk rock Addams Family. The book is more a series of pastiches than a novel with an overall plot, and the ending descends into a vortex quite literally of metafiction, but despite that his language and humor consistently delight. It even has rare moments of beauty, as the poem the unnamed protagonist write for his incestually-involved siste I've read a couple of other books by Aylett, but none come close in my affections to Bigot Hall, which paints a surrealistic portrait of a sort of modern, punk rock Addams Family.
It even has rare moments of beauty, as the poem the unnamed protagonist write for his incestually-involved sister: If the sun which lights your eyes Were thirty-seven times its size Then you, and I, and all the world Would start to twitch and fry. Mar 30, Traummachine rated it really liked it.
Bigot Hall is the story of an unbalanced, insane, and possibly supernatural family, where our hero repeatedly dodges murder by his uncle, is madly in love with his sister, and lives to torment the guests of the house. I read Aylett's Slaughtermatic about 5 years ago, and the style of this reminded me why I liked it.
This felt less stream-of-consciousness than the other book, and reads more like a series of short stories. But the loosely held together cohesion of the shorts brings the overall book Bigot Hall is the story of an unbalanced, insane, and possibly supernatural family, where our hero repeatedly dodges murder by his uncle, is madly in love with his sister, and lives to torment the guests of the house.
But the loosely held together cohesion of the shorts brings the overall book to life. The first few chapters seem largely self contained, but prior events begin to have an impact as the book progresses. Aylett is offensive but hysterical. If you can laugh at comedic horror movies or porn comedy, then you'll laugh at this. Despite this, there's an unexpected endearing quality as the family unites in kind of an "Only our family is allowed to treat him so bad!
It's pretty dense writing, so despite the short length I have to recommend you only pick this up when you're in the mood for a book that requires focus, a book that can easily offend you, a book that's more of a themed collection than a novel, and a book that doesn't care about your expectations and just is.
But when that mood hits you, this hits the spot. Mar 22, John Kenny rated it really liked it Shelves: I picked up Bigot Hall by Steve Aylett not knowing what to expect and it just blew me away. It is anarchic black humour at its best, filled with witty observations and completely off the wall characters, whose volatile natures and violent dispositions I have never met the like of before.
I never laughed so much at such outrageous brutality; I'm utterly ashamed of myself. There were many things I was reminded of during my journey through this book: There was even a touch of Moorcock in here a la Jerry and Catherine Cornelius' obsessive incestuous relationship. Yes, it's a crazy mix, but shining through is Aylett's very own wicked sense of humour and style.
If I have a quibble it's that the book is episodic with no real sense of a beginning, middle and end, and the price tag is a little steep for such a short work. However, it was a refreshing change from the standard, long-winded epics you tend to find on the shelves these days; definitely a question of 'never mind the width, feel the quality'. Jul 27, Shane rated it it was amazing Shelves: This was absolutely excellent.
I read Slaughtermatic and thought it was kind of over the top and incomprehensible way too often. But this was just smart and over the top. It's hard to imagine exactly how he writes like this. It's like stream of consciousness which is often boring or disjointed but edited and cohesive. There are characters and each one stays "in character". You begin to know what to expect even if it is the unexpected and each is so interesting that it's hard to pick a favorit This was absolutely excellent.
You begin to know what to expect even if it is the unexpected and each is so interesting that it's hard to pick a favorite. Each vignette is more absurd than the last but together they form a complete story.
Some have interesting story seeds that could be the entire premise for a novel, others are just funny and mischievous. Here's some dialogue, if you like this you'll love this book: Roger Lang," said Father. How old are you Mr. Do you heal quickly? Unless the wound is open, as with a triangular chunk blade. Feb 27, Joey Comeau rated it it was amazing. This book appeals to my interests! Similarly the illustrative quotes chosen here are merely those the complete review subjectively believes represent the tenor and judgment of the review as a whole.
We acknowledge and remind and warn you that they may, in fact, be entirely unrepresentative of the actual reviews by any other measure. The complete review 's Review:. Bigot Hall is even more localized than was the setting of Aylett's preceding and subsequent novels fabled Beerlight, a town that lives for crime. Bigot Hall is the residence of our nameless young narrator and his Addams-family like relatives. The novel is related by a character known, at best, as "laughing boy" -- though he does write out his name as Beelzebub on the blackboard the one day that he attends school.
Our narrator is not entirely at ease among his family, a number of whom have decidedly odd and sinister ambitions and intentions. A Steaming Pistons Steampunk Story. The Boys at Twilight. The Street That Wasn't There. Simak and Carl Jacobi. Taken Captive by Birds. Tales from the Deep.
Short Shocks Volume I. Flash in the Pantheon. Too Cold for Snow. Occidental Adam, Oriental Eve The Oldest Word for Dawn. Good Things and Other Stories. Jones and the Mammoths. The Dish and Other Works.
Rebel at the End of Time. How to write a great review. The review must be at least 50 characters long. The title should be at least 4 characters long.