May 13 2006

Book Review: A Dirty Job

I love Christopher Moore’s books.  While A Dirty Job is nowhere as good as his all time best (Lamb : The Gospel According to Biff, Christ’s Childhood Pal – a book David Cowan turned me on to five years ago that resulted in me reading – in order – the other five books Moore had published up to that time), it’s still a riot.  Moore is – in three words – “one twisted fuck” – and his writing reflects his immense creativity and deeply warped sense of humor. 

Moore’s books take place in an alternate reality that is a minor sidestep from the planet we inhabit.  Most of the backdrop is earth and normal civilization, yet there are a few characters that are just a little bit off.  In A Dirty Job, you almost believe that Lily is a normal goth teenager, Charlie is a normal beta male, Minty Fresh is a normal seven foot tall black dude that wears green suits (and he prefers to be called “Mr. Fresh” thank you very much), and Audrey (who we meet late in the book) can make bizarre animated 14 inch tall “squirrel people” out of random animal parts and a few other things.  Oh – and be careful around Sophie’s dogs.

While this book ostensibly takes place in (and below) San Francisco, I was pondering the slight shift from reality as I finished this off at 2am in an apartment in the middle of Paris.  Tonight – as Amy and I went in search of Mexican food (a near impossibility in Paris – we thought we found a place – but it turned out to have vanished in the middle of the night to be replaced by an Indian restaurant, which we nonetheless thoroughly enjoyed) – I suggested that maybe the “death merchants” really did exist.  She just looked at me funny.