Book – Vernon God Little
Author – DBC Pierre
Year – 2003
Genre – Fiction
Pages – 277
Whilst I know that a book that has won an award is by no means a guarantee of it’s quality, I cannot help but think that any book that has won a major prize – such as this book did with the 2003 Man Booker Prize – must have a certain amount of quality.
And that is not a million miles away from the truth. Vernon God Little is a very well written book, and by the end I had decided that I liked it. However, getting to that stage was not the easiest of journeys. We pick up the story with a small Texas town in mourning for the loss of sixteen students in a gun massacre at a school. Vernon Little was the best friend of the gunman, who killed himself after the spree, robbing the town of a place to lay the blame. As a result, suspicion falls on Vernon, who finds every little thing he has ever done wrong being turned into ammunition as a case swells for his being involved in the killing.
The biggest problem throughout the story, is that everything seems so cringeworthily futile the whole time. Things keep cropping up that you know are going to mess Vernon up, and you spend about four pages cringing waiting for it to happen, before finally they do mess him up, and something else is set up for you to cringe over. I found it hard to keep ploughing on through the book at times, just wanting the terrible tension to end.
The end section of the book takes a quite frankly ridiculous turn as well. I don’t want to spoil it for anyone who would like to read it, but the twists are silly, the reality tv concept that is inexplicably accepted by the government is awful, and the end is pretty unbelievable.
That’s a lot of negative points, but it isn’t all bad. I just found that I enjoyed it an awful lot more once I had finished it. And I don’t think I will read the sequels.