The "chatty" style of this book by an author I admire and love is hard to take. As others have noted, this is utterly different to anything he has written before. I almost gave up because Mike's narrative at the start irritated me. So much of what is contained in this novel seems to me to be utterly irrelevant. Pages of Jen's diaries that go on and on about.....nothing. Mike's life is as odd as is Mike and frankly full of things that are neither sensational nor interesting but be careful. If you skip some of this, as I did, you run the danger of missing a sentence that is important to the story, thrown in seemingly at random. This is of course part and parcel of who Mike obviously is supposed to be but I found it odd that one short sentence thrown down at the end of a chapter mentions, "en passant" so to speak, that he finally had sex with Margaret.
The story and prose are brilliant Sebastian Faulks but because the whole book is Mike telling us about Mike, who is not exactly a bright light in the firmament, it lacks any kind of lift that Mike himself needs and so becomes pretty heavy going. There is a deeper meaning to this book as there is to Mike. I just found it a bit of a slog getting there.
"Compulsively readable yet deeply disturbing. . . . To read Engleby is to be carried in the arms of a master." --The Denver Post"A cold, clever book about a cold, clever character. . . . Sebastian Faulks will soon be known as one of the most versatile writers at work today-and one of the most entertaining." --The New York Observer "Beware: Engleby is no ordinary whodunit. . . . With artistry and skill, [Faulks] turns a would-be murder mystery into a meditation on consciousness." --The Washington Post"Engleby himself-funny, fiercely intelligent, unreliable, arrogant and solipsistic-is an intriguing . . . mesmerizing creation." --San Francisco Chronicle "Engleby is a verbal performance, and Faulks jacks up the degree of difficulty by choosing to impersonate a brilliant, manic young sociopath. . . . Dazzlingly ironic, Nabokovian modernism." --The New York Times
Sebastian Faulks's new audiobook is a bolt from the blue contemporary, demotic, angry, heart-wrenching and funny in the deepest shade of black.