Saturday, 24 March 2012

Book #29 Under The Skin by Michel Faber

Under The Skin

Under The Skin is the second Faber novel I have read following The Crimson Petal and The White some years ago. The two books really could not be more different. I believe this novel was Faber's debut and what a debut it is.

In Under The Skin, Isserley, a woman whose past existence and current circumstance we are initially unsure of, spends her time driving about the Scottish Highlands looking for hitchhikers, male hitchhikers. She assesses them first as she drives by, dismissing them if they fail to meet a certain criteria in looks, once in her car, she dismisses them again if they have loved ones, mothers, children, friends who will miss them, dropping them off at their requested next stop......

It would be a massive mistake to say anything further about this novel in a review, anything further than is given on the blurb, for fear of destroying it in any way for other readers. Possibly the single most original novel I have read so far this year, and in a number of years, Under The Skin does precisely that, gets right under your skin. Shocking, thought provoking and at times revolting Under The Skin takes a certain social point of view and subverts it, giving it an intelligent rather than hysterical voice. Certainly the most uncomfortable book since I read The Wasp Factory by Iain Banks, I read this book in one sitting.

I would not recommend this book to the squeamish but I would recommend it to anyone looking for something out of the ordinary. This book out Stephen King's, Stephen King! 10/10  

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