I am an exceedingly bored member of the human race, just looking for a bit of intellectual stimulation. I joined here on a complete whim having discovered that people who like Palahniuk tend to have pretty interesting reading tastes.
One question- does everyone on here LOVE Palahniuk, as in, is he most people's favourite writer? I ask this purely because I like Palahniuk, but I don't love him. He doesn't exactly rock my world. I've read "Fight Club", "Haunted", "Choke" and "Rant." I loved "Fight Club", I thought "Haunted" veered between being incredible and terrible, I thought "Choke" was mildly entertaining, and I thought "Rant" was mediocre.
In my opinion, Chuck Palahniuk is certainly not a subtle writer. His satire smacks you right between the eyes. In some cases I think this works brilliantly e.g. the directness and brutality of "Fight Club" leaves an indelible mark. However, in other cases, such as in the ongoing story in "Haunted", the satire just comes across as patronising and heavy-handed. By the end of that book I was just saying to myself "ok I get the point Chuck." It frustrated me because some of the stories in that book such as "The Nightmare Box" were amongst the best things that I'd read by him.
Having said all this, there are not many existing writers that I rate highly, but Palahniuk is amongst them. The only active writers that I would rate higher than him are Michel Houellebecq, Bret Easton Ellis, Will Christopher Baer and James Ellroy (I think he's still writing.). I would have said JG Ballard as well, but of course, tragically, he just passed away.
As well as these writers there are the likes of Mark Danielewski (still reserving judgement as to whether he's a one-hit-wonder), Jeremy Robert Johnson, Craig Clevenger, John Niven, and probably others that I've forgotten. Anyone else fans of these? If not, I'd strongly recommend "Angel Dust Apocalypse",(Robert Johnson), "House Of leaves" (Danielewski), "Kill your friends" (Niven), "American Psycho" (Easton Ellis), "Atomised" (Houellebeq.), and "The Atrocity Exhibition" (Ballard)
Anyway, I've gone on long enough. Vehement disagreements are always welcome.