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Snuff Fiction

Robert Rankin

Average Review Rating Average Rating 7/10 (1 Review)
Book Details

Publisher : Doubleday

Published : 1999

Copyright : Robert Rankin 1999

ISBN-10 : HB 0-385-40944-3
ISBN-13 : HB 978-0-385-40944-5

Publisher's Write-Up

Society's plug is about to be pulled, big time. At the stroke of midnight on 31 December 1999, computer systems all over the world will crash and plunge us into chaos.

But so what if it's the downfall of civilisation? These things happen. We'll just have to take it on the chin. Or at least up the nose. Because rejoice and give thanks, snuff is making a comeback. And who do we thank for this? Who is the man who brings joy to the nostrils of the nation? The tender blender with the blinder grinder? The master blaster with the louder powder? The geezer with the sneezer that's a real crowd pleaser? Mr Doveston, that's who, and this is his story.

So forget about impending doom and enter the glamorous world of snuff-snorting. Oh, and don't forget to bring a hankie. Things could get a little messy later.

Robert Rankin's latest novel gleefully chronicles the collapse of civilisation as the world slides into chaos with a smile on its face and a finger up its nose. Or just the rabid ranting of a snuff-crazed technophobe?

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Reader Reviews

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Review by Ray (011201) Rating (7/10)

Review by Ray
Rating 7/10
This is a biography of sorts about the rise of Doveston, the king of snuff.

Essentially a rags to riches story of a kid from Brentford who turns from a 'shuffler' to a man feared by his enemies and loved by the tobacco using populace. The story is told by Doveston's best friend Edwin, who takes us through the 50's and 60's. He misses out the 70's as the 60's could never have been beaten by it :-) and continues on up to December 31st, 1999 - and the great Millennial Ball. From there all hell breaks loose... or at least lots of man eating plants, but that's another story.

Edwin writes the biography from his viewpoint and for the forty years or so he seems to get the worst of it. His pet dog being blown up by a misplaced stick of dynamite, a spell in prison and several beatings, one caused amusingly enough by merely plugging in a kettle at the Brentstock music festival. There's a deep-rooted tale of revenge in the novel and all will become apparent as the story nears its conclusion.

The story is peppered with amusing titbits, Norman and his 'happifier' suit, long legged women and the initiation into the priesthood (biting hard on a bit of stick and bending over apparently :).

To be honest, I find Rankin's work runs hot and cold. I would rate this as just over luke warm. It was hard work to get into but once there I enjoyed large sections of the book. Some of it was a bit bland but when it was funny it did make me laugh out loud.

If you are a diehard Rankin fan you will like this book, if not I reckon a few reads would make this one grow on you.
Ray (1st December 2001)

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