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Damned by Chuck Palahniuk
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Damned (original 2011; edition 2012)

by Chuck Palahniuk

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7443712,508 (3.18)14
Member:Pigletto
Title:Damned
Authors:Chuck Palahniuk
Info:Vintage (2012), Paperback, 256 pages
Collections:Read but unowned
Rating:**
Tags:read in 2012, humour, fantasy

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Damned by Chuck Palahniuk (2011)

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Showing 1-5 of 37 (next | show all)
An insult to the intelligence and taste of even the least discerning reader. This bestseller is proof that: "Nobody ever went broke underestimating the taste of the American public." - H. L. Mencken. How demoralizing.

A low class, dismal and ugly assault of a book. Not funny, not clever, just vacuous sophomoric drivel. Won't bother with anything else by this author. The first book that ever made me think it was a shame LibraryThing doesn't allow for negative star ratings. I would not recommend this book to anyone. Definitely not for kids.

In his adolescent protagonist's terms - Palahniuk is gross, creepy old man Pervy McPervoson. Spare yourself from Chuck's criminally sick fantasies and ramblings, toss this book in the trashbin. The only book that reduced me to praying for amnesia so I could forget it.

To end on a positive note: The author & publisher set the bar for book publishing to the lowest I've ever seen. So hopeful hack writers, take heart! By doing so, Anchor has pretty much declared they'll publish any dreck that comes there way. Go for it. This toon sums it up for me: https://www.librarything.com/pic/4466206

If anyone is actually interested in reading a truly excellent book on a similar topic try Repossessed by A. M. Jenkins. If the author/publisher had better marketing skills and if the reading public had any taste this one should be the bestseller. A great read for all age groups. ( )
  PitcherBooks | Jul 17, 2014 |
“No, it’s not fair, but what makes earth feel like Hell is our expectation that it should feel like Heaven. Earth is earth. Dead is dead. You’ll find out for yourself soon enough. It won’t help the situation for you to get all upset.” - Madison Spencer

This is a 2.8 review.

Chuck Palahniuk's Damned is about 13 year old Madison Spencer. She's the product of secular Buddhists celebrity parents who adopt random children from third world countries. Madison's smart for her age. She's also dead and Hell's newest citizen. Madison finds herself a bevvy of "friends" while reminiscing about her old life. She's a recovering "hopeaholic."

However, she decides to stop being a nice girl and start asserting herself. She gains the upper hand on all of Humanity's undesirables including Hitler and Caligula. Her world is upended by the fact that her admittance may have been a clerical error and that The Power That Is might be the one pulling her strings. So what's Madison to do?

Palahniuk's writing reminds me of Diablo Cody's screenwriting: it's a little too hype, if that makes any sense. It was also a little too vulgar for my taste. I mean, he did use wonderfully descrpitive adjectives and I am a little prudish but still, too much for me.

I don't think I ever read such a narrative that was polarizing from chapter to chapter. One chapter, I would be totally disgusted with everybody's behavior and the gross descriptions of the equally gross landscape of hell but by the next chapter? I would think it was endearing. Case in point: Madison accidentally contacting her parents and her letting them know everything they believed spiritually is true.

I have such a love-hate relationship with Damned. I liked the concept. I like the twists. I liked the mythology although the infractions that guaranteed a character's damnation was a bit juvenile. However, it still didn't sit right with me. ( )
  Y2Ash | Apr 16, 2014 |
I really loved this book, and being a first time Chuck Palahniuk reader, I wasn't sure that I would. Damned was really right in my reading wheelhouse with it being set in Hell, and I found Maddie incredibly funny and caustic. I don't typically like reading about teens, but this certainly isn't like those YA books about teenagers that seem so popular these days. I think Palahniuk really did a great job getting into the psyche of the self-conscious, self-righteous teenage girl, and while it was a little outlandish, I thoroughly enjoyed Damned and can't wait for the sequel to come out. ( )
  morgtini | Feb 25, 2014 |
I've discovered by reading this that I am not a big fan of satire. Not even extremely well written satire, which this certainly is. So while I personally didn't like it, I would still recommend it to those who enjoy this type of book.

Damned follows the 13year old protagonist, Madison, as she wakes up in Hell after overdosing on marijuana. Each chapter begins "Are you there Satan, it's me Madison" with a little note to Satan. Madison is a sarcastic and cynical girl who has been alternately spoiled and neglected by her rich, famous, and "free-thinking" parents. She joins a group of her peers, reminiscent of The Breakfast Club, as they journey through Hell searching for Satan. Throughout Damned is an overabundance of pop-culture references, blood, gore, and all manner scenes designed to disgust and offend even the most broad minded reader. There were some moments that were laugh out loud funny, but most of the humor read more like the college equivalent of a fart joke.

This book is much too explicit to be appropriate for teens and much to corny to appeal to most adults, so I believe that this would mainly appeal to the same demographic that enjoys movies about college frat parties and the like. ( )
  ahappybooker | Feb 7, 2014 |
I've discovered by reading this that I am not a big fan of satire. Not even extremely well written satire, which this certainly is. So while I personally didn't like it, I would still recommend it to those who enjoy this type of book.

Damned follows the 13year old protagonist, Madison, as she wakes up in Hell after overdosing on marijuana. Each chapter begins "Are you there Satan, it's me Madison" with a little note to Satan. Madison is a sarcastic and cynical girl who has been alternately spoiled and neglected by her rich, famous, and "free-thinking" parents. She joins a group of her peers, reminiscent of The Breakfast Club, as they journey through Hell searching for Satan. Throughout Damned is an overabundance of pop-culture references, blood, gore, and all manner scenes designed to disgust and offend even the most broad minded reader. There were some moments that were laugh out loud funny, but most of the humor read more like the college equivalent of a fart joke.

This book is much too explicit to be appropriate for teens and much to corny to appeal to most adults, so I believe that this would mainly appeal to the same demographic that enjoys movies about college frat parties and the like. ( )
1 vote ahappybooker | Feb 7, 2014 |
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Are you there, Satan? It's me, Madison.
Quotations
Trust me, the being-dead part is much easier than the dying part. If you can watch much television, then being dead will be a cinch. Actually, watching television and surfing the Internet are really excellent practice for being dead.
No, it's not fair, but what makes earth feel like Hell is our expectation that it should feel like Heaven. Earth is earth. Dead is dead. You'll find out for yourself soon enough. It won't help the situation for you to get all upset.
Probably I woke up because someone was screaming in Hell, someone is always screaming. Anyone who's ever flown London to Sydney, seated next to or anywhere in the proximity of a fussy baby, you'll no doubt fall right into the swing of things in Hell. What with the strangers and crowding and seemingly endless hours of waiting for nothing to happen, for you Hell will feel like one long, nostalgic hit of deja vu. Especially if your in-flight movie was The English Patient. In Hell, whenever the demons announce they're going to treat everyone to a big-name Hollywood movie, don't get too excited because it's always The English Patient or, unfortunately, The Piano.
Another detail to remember about Hell ... whenever you ask why anyone is damned for all eternity, she'll tell you "jaywalking" or "carrying a black purse with brown shoes" or some such pretty nonsense. In Hell you'd be foolish to count on people displaying high standards of honesty. The same goes for earth.
Don't get me wrong. Hell isn't so dreadful, not compared to Ecology Camp, and especially not compared to junior high school. Call me jaded, but not much compares to having your legs waxed or getting your navel piercing done at a mall kiosk.
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As thirteen-year-old Madison tries to figure out how she died and ended up in Hell, she learns how to manipulate the corrupt system of demons and bodily fluids.

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