a different human being to everybody you meet"
"Rant" Casey may or may not be a legendary serial killer.
It depends on who you ask.
Palahniuk's eighth fiction novel is a collection of interviews
about Buster Casey as told by the people that loved him,
hated him, grew up with him, were victimized by him, made
love to him and crashed cars with him.
Jesus in the Bible, we never hear directly from Buster but
instead are told about his life, what he did and what he
said by the people around him. The result is a multifaceted
look at the man's incredibly interesting life without really
knowing which characters are telling the truth and which
characters are lying for their own individual reasons.
decision to ditch the usual third person narrator gives
him a chance to challenge himself in a way he has not done
in previous books. With a cast of at least 50 different
characters, each must have his or her own unique voice and
opinion about the story they are telling about Rant. While
it is difficult at first to keep track of characters, their
relationship to Rant and contradictory accounts of his life,
Palahniuk manages to keep each character unique as well
as a function in advancing the plot.
most people I didn't meet Rant Casey until after he was
dead. That's how it works for most celebrities: After they
croak, their circle of friends just explodes.…"
Casey grows up in a small town in the future but soon realizes
he is destined for something more. At the same time he begins
"vaccinating himself against fear" by subjecting himself
to animal and insect bites, people around him begin to die
macabre deaths. Before long, Buster's mysterious legend
begins to grow.
he leaves his home for the big city and Buster, known as
"Rant" to some, joins a group of nighttime thrill seekers
that play a deadly game called Party Crashing which makes
a fight club look like a ballet recital.
of the main themes Palahniuk explores in Rant is
how a celebrity's life is defined by the people around them
and the press they receive. Was Anna Nicole Smith America's
Princess Diana or a drugged up, former plus size model?
That depends on who you ask and what network they are being
different people describe how to draw a dog, I'd end up
drawing six different dogs. The truth about Buster Casey
and his extraordinary and grisly life is in the book, but
a lot of the fun comes from looking for clues along the
the cults in his novels, fans of Chuck Palahniuk are a dedicated
and neurotic lot. We, I mean…they love to read obsessive
details about a variety of subjects ranging from what happens
when you're bitten by a black widow spider to the economics
of rare coins to the complex rules of Party Crashing. Palahniuk's
imagination is so sharp, you're never sure where his research
ends and where he begins making the whole thing up.
format of the book did leave me with one minor complaint.
I never had a real sense of urgency to read Rant.
The fact that the various characters that are telling the
story are telling it in past tense means that everything
in the story has already happened. Without a traditional
narrator to tell us the story as it's happening, the story
lacks a driving plot line to move the book forward. While
I enjoyed reading Rant when I picked it up, I never
felt a need to keep reading it page after page after page
as I have with most of Palahniuk's previous novels.
you're a long time fan that has read his work from the start
or a fan that only read Fight Club because of the
movie, Rant continues to deliver the goods. Great
action, ghoulish plotline and masterful storytelling add
up to another must read Palahniuk novel. New readers may
find the format annoying or difficult to read at first,
but persistent readers will be rewarded.
maybe I never read the book and I made this whole thing
up. The truth is in the review. Did you find the clues?
An Oral Biography of Buster Casey