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Damned by Chuck Palahniuk

Damned (original 2011; edition 2012)

by Chuck Palahniuk

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1,105567,493 (3.17)18
Authors:Chuck Palahniuk
Info:Vintage (2012), Paperback, 256 pages
Collections:Your library, Read and owned
Tags:read in 2012, humour, fantasy

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Damned by Chuck Palahniuk (2011)



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I rented a copy of Damned by Chuck Palahniuk from the local library and listened to the book in my car through the Overdrive app. I found a beautiful contradiction between the fall foliage visible on the New York Throughway and Palahniuk’s disgusting and hilarious descriptions of Hell.
I feel the need to state that I was biased to like this book because Fight Club really catalyzed a paradigm shift for me as I began the transition into adulthood. It would have been tough for me to end out disliking this book on his merit, but it stood on its own and won my fan-hood fair and square.

Damned is the tale of Madison, judgmental, self-deprecating, child of privilege who died and winds up in Hell. I felt immediately hesitant because I don’t get into stories with pessimistic characters. I find myself carrying their baggage back into reality. However, early in she falls into a clique that intentionally Mirrors the five kid dynamic of The Breakfast Club, an incredible coming of age film from the 80s. The interpersonal connections were intriguing and lured me ever onward. Madison also describes the indignity of the experience and some little sadistic part of me wanted to watch her suffer.

I perceived that Madison’s struggle throughout the novel is to “lose hope” as a part of coming to grips with the events of her life and her future in the afterlife.

His descriptions of Hell and the forms of torture awaiting the unsaved had be laughing out loud, and I don’t mean texting “lol” while driving the throughway. As I have often suspected it might be, Plahniuk’s Hell has a few horrors of the mundane living world. I’ve even spent a couple months at a desk performing one of Hell’s jobs. There was a satisfying amount of research and fact dropping regarding Hell’s hierarchy and while not necessary, I was thankful I once read Dante’s Inferno, if only to enjoy several references.

I had an incredible journey in the mind of a thirteen year old girl. There is one scene that threw me straight back to 1993 when I was on a bus coming home from grade school, debating reproduction with our ignorant prepubescents. I felt like he’d created a mental time machine just for me!
I made a few guesses based on well played foreshadowing, some panned out, others went right over my head until I just shook my head and gave Palahniuk a silent nod and a grin. His ends wraps up Maddie’s journey of self-discovery and opens up what I hope is covered in Doomed. I’m looking forward to the next installment.
( )
  S_Shane_Thomas | Dec 30, 2016 |
Awesomely told account of a 13 year old who is well adjusting to being in hell as if it were high school, coming from the same author as FIGHT CLUB id have to say this book is worth taking a couple hours to read its weird and creepy but totally awesome loved it right up my alley! ( )
  KimRosario | Nov 23, 2016 |
A young girl dies and then finds that hell isn't that bad really. ( )
  kale.dyer | Sep 13, 2016 |
Why can't I just like Chuck Palahniuk? This was okay, but even though the ending was supposed to leave me hanging, I just said "Eh, that's done" and moved on. I don't like his style, his stories or even his book covers.

Main thing I was annoyed by in this book: the way the main character had to address the reader when she used a "big" word. "Of course I know this word, I'm 13, not *insert stupid comment here*"
So. Many. Times.

You're not a 13-year-old girl, Chuck, don't try to pretend you are by writing crappy dialogue. ( )
1 vote imahorcrux | Jun 22, 2016 |
You know that old joke “If she’s here, then who’s running hell?” – It’s Madison Spencer, the overweight, smart-mouthed lonely child of fabulously rich and famous Hollywood parents. Not for the squeamish or easily offended, but I thoroughly enjoyed this one ( )
  memccauley6 | May 3, 2016 |
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Are you there, Satan? It's me, Madison.
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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