Title: American Psycho
Author: Bret Easton Ellis
Page Count/Review Word Count: 390
It’s pretty difficult for me to review this one because while I did actually enjoy reading it, I don’t necessarily think it was an objectively good book. A lot of the ideas and the imagery in it were so clunky that it was like being beat over the head with them, and while I’ve previously said to a YouTube friend that I like it when the author makes it easy for me to grasp the imagery, this book just took the piss a bit. After the third or the fourth long extract where Bateman is dissecting popular music to contrast it with his random outbursts of violence, I was just so done with it. The same is true with the constant references to Donald Trump and the way that Bateman and his cronies worship money as their own private religion. It could have been a powerful message, but by the end of the book I was just like, “I GET THE POINT.”
But like I said, I still enjoyed reading the book, and I even thought that the “erotic” scenes were written tastefully without resorting to using weird phrases like “he entered her glistening sex with his rigid tip”, which is all too common when people write sex scenes. Sure, the sex scenes in question basically involve people being raped and then brutally murdered and so it’s not exactly easy reading, but at least the writing itself didn’t make me cringe. To be honest, I was mostly numb to it all and it quite often felt as though stuff had just been thrown into the mix to shock and offend people.
All in all, I find it hard to judge this one. It was simultaneously dated and more relevant than ever, but the actual central plot was just so-so. Perhaps it was more impactful back in 1991 and I suspect I would have enjoyed it more if I’d never read Irvine Welsh, because this reads like an American version of Irvine Welsh except following rich people instead of poor people. They weren’t compelling characters to read about and no amount of gore porn could help it to recover. It was like a horror film that’s only scary because of jump scares.