Mr. Dynamite

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Monday, October 10, 2005
by Meredith Brosnan #35

I can hardly describe this book except to say that it is loopy and lurid but has a broken yet still beating heart at the center. Warning: it brings out alliteration in those already predisposed. Jarleth Prendergast (aka Trendy Prendy, or Trendy P by the time he's hallucinating the book's version of the Wu-Tang Clan) is an avant-garde claymation filmmaker (among other things, but I think that's what he would like you to know first); an Irishman living in New York; and one of those hopeless screw-ups that makes his own situation worse with every decision. I still couldn't help but root for him, even as I recognized he would be living hell to know personally and that his entire mission statement was lunacy. The whole book is a run-on stream of consciousness sentence as he talks to his dead lawyer. It's wonderful, it's sad, it's hilarious in parts. I've picked out a short passage to sort of give a taste of Trendy P's style. I found it very addictive.

--Things looked hopeless - one afternoon during a thunderstorm I ducked into St. Pat's - I'd never been inside the great cathedral - I lit a candle and asked the Blessed Virgin to help me - just like that: 20 yrs of cheerful atheism down the drain!!! - Holy Mary Mother of God I know in the past I have failed to show you the respect and honour that is your due especially in view of your interesting origins in pre-Christian fertility cults cf. R. Graves and others but please if you can overlook this lapse smile down upon your wayward son give me strength for the task ahead and in return I promise to straighten up and fly right - O BVM in your powder blue gown bring me the head of Peter the Rapist - or rather let me bring YOU the head - Mystery Lady Disco Lady Star of the Sea & Queen of All the Salty Sailors HELP ME amen- Fighting words you might say but deep down Sean I knew I'd gone off the boil:

I could go on and on, but the rest of my favorite passages would take too long to explain out of their context (which, to give you a little hint include a pistol named McSplatter and operation: SNUFFOUT) Trendy P is a troubled man, but well worth spending some time with.
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