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Dead Famous by Ben Elton
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Dead Famous (original 2001; edition 2001)

by Ben Elton

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1,231256,459 (3.49)33
Member:crimson-tide
Title:Dead Famous
Authors:Ben Elton
Info:Bantam Press (2001), Paperback, 279 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:
Tags:fiction, reality tv, satire, murder, mystery, england

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Dead Famous by Ben Elton (2001)

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» See also 33 mentions

English (22)  French (1)  Dutch (1)  Swedish (1)  English (25)
Showing 1-5 of 22 (next | show all)
I wanted to read this novel because Ben Elton, co wrote Blackadder which is one of my favourite tv series ever so when I saw he had written a book, I thought I would give it a go. I don't read a lot of contemporary novels as I like to escape when I read, so reading about the *real world* isn't escaping, in my mind.

Like the summary of the book says, the plot is based around a reality tv programme, where ten contestants are constantly on camera, being watched by the public. This is very much like the tv series Big Brother, and in essence this book is taking a swing at reality tv shows like this one.

The plot was alright, the author kept the killer a secret until the very end of the novel, although I had guessed who did it about two thirds of the way through. There are also enough background information about the different characters, so that anybody could have been the murderer, they all could have had motives to do it. Also Elton doesn't give away who was murdered until about half way through the novel, which was clever, but was a bit annoying as it felt like the novel was written in a secretive way, which took away from the story.

The 10 contestants in the house were all right as characters but I felt they were all a bit cliched and weren't really like people are in the real world. The police detective was a likeable character but his constant moaning about the people in the tv programme was a tad grating at times.

Overall this is an ok novel that I probably won't read again but if you like contemporary detective novls with a reality tv series, this one is for you.
( )
  ACascadeofBooks | Oct 5, 2016 |
This book was super topical when Big Brother was first on screen and is some brilliant social commentary. I love Ben Elton's way of writing: He can make you see the POV of even the most unlikable of characters - people you would never chose to associate with can suddenly be people you feel compassion and sympathy for - in this case the shallow and vapid contestants on Big Brother style show "Peeping Tom".
Fast paced and entertaining. ( )
  SashaM | Apr 20, 2016 |
left by Carey's parents

17/06/08 not sure I'll finish this book

18/06/08 I did finish the book. It's pretty good as a whodunit, but the characters drove me crazy although I did learn some new British slang - who knew "bog" was slang for toilet?! We left North American before the whole reality tv fad started so although we've occasionally watched some episodes of the French versions, we've never really gotten into it and I have trouble understanding the appeal of either being on or watching such a show. ( )
  Susanna.Dilliott | Apr 23, 2014 |
I am laying in bed, wedged firmly in between my two sleeping daughters (and one husband) desperately wishing I owned this book in ebook form.

Alas, I bought the hard copy and it is sitting in the lounge room where it will have to remain, unfinished, until tomorrow.

Can you tell I have enjoyed the book.

I have heard it said that Ben Elton becomes repetitive in his books. I have to agree, but I enjoy it, I love it. He has a way of mocking types of people by caricaturing them in his writing. He makes them overexcited, over zealous, amped, singular, unable to see past their own needs. This theme has carried through all three books that I have read... But I still enjoy it.

This particular story follows the police investigation of a murder in a "Big Brother" style television house. The story opens with the investigation underway as the detective-in-charge is familiarising himself with the contestants of the house, the suspects. It is a who-dunit with a twist, it isn't until half way through the book that we, the reader, learn exactly who was murdered and how they managed to do it under the gaze of cameras, producers, technicians, and a live Internet feed.

I can't wait to find out the end... Okay I can wait, but barely, and only because I have to get up early.

Ben Elton writes stories that are incredibly engaging, I love his caricatures. I am a fan of his books, and this book is no exception. ( )
  alsocass | Oct 12, 2013 |
While it is a bit dated I did enjoy this book despite not particularly liking any of the characters. Unfortunately it would appear I have read it previously as I knew who had done it (and why). ( )
  SpicyCat | Jan 5, 2013 |
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With thanks to:
In the UK: Andrew, Anna, Caroline, Claire, Craig, Darren, Mel, Nichola, Nick, Sada and Tom and Amma, Brian, Dean, Elizabeth, Bubble, Helen, Josh, Narinder, Penny, Paul and Stuart;
and in Australia: Andy, Anita, Ben, Blair, Christina, Gordon, Jemma, Johnnie, Lisa, Peter, Rachel, Sara-Marie, Sharna and Todd,
Without whom this novel would not have been written.
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Television Presenter, television presenter, television presenter, television presenter, train driver.'
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
One house, ten contestants, thirty cameras, forty microphones, one murder...and no evidence.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0552999458, Paperback)

One house, ten contestants, thirty cameras, and forty microphones. Everybody knows the rules—total strangers are forced to live together while the rest of the country watches them do it. However, on day 27, one of the housemates is killed on live TV. Who is the murderer? How did they manage to kill under the constant gaze of the television cameras? Why did they do it? And who will be next?

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:06:20 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

"One house, ten contestants, thirty cameras, forty microphones, one murder ... and no evidence"--P. [4] of cover.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 4 descriptions

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