Patrick Bateman is 26 and works on Wall Street. He is handsome, sophisticated, charming, and intelligent. He is also a psychopath. And he is taking us to a head-on collision with America's greatest dream - and its worst nightmare...
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©1991 Bret Easton Ellis (P)2009 Recorded Books LLC
I was equally disappointed and relived when the book finished. I don't know if it's due to me listening as I was working, but I found it hard to get an idea of any arch of storytelling. No character development. I guess that is part of authors plan to emphasise psychosis?
The murder scenes are hard listening. And SPOILERS the story just abruptly ends. No comeuppance, no consequences just 17 hours of in depth fashion discussions, album reviews, arguments over dinner reservations in between tonnes of vile gore.
i really stuggled with reading the book with endless lists of who is wearing what and reviews of bands but the audio book makes this all so much easier to get through. the book is violent so if you are faint hearted dont bother. its well read by nick landrum who when needed matchs the bored tone of the character. book transition quickly from a story of a high living well dressed male to that of butchery. i love it you should give it a try.
Another reviewer has described this book as both boring and gruesome. It is both. The story is composed largely of lists of who's wearing what by which designer, punctuated by scenes of extreme violence both physical and/or sexual. It is not for the faint-hearted.
The protagonist – Patrick Bateman – is a thoroughly dislikeable character, completely without redeeming features. Leaving aside the psychosis, some psychotics can be utterly charming, he treats everyone mercilessly and his actions are without repercussion. He is utterly self-absorbed, sexist, homophobic and racist. I read a review of this book elsewhere that suggested that the violence does not actually happen and I feel that it is completely plausible that these scenes are cocaine-fuelled fantasies.
There are recurrent themes throughout the book, the subject of the "Patti Winters Show" televised each morning; getting a reservation in an exclusive restaurant; monologues on the merits of the band Genesis and singer Whitney Houston. The characters’ conversations are beyond banal, a discussion on brands of bottled waters, for instance.
Had I set out to read the physical book, I wouldn't have got past page 20 it is so mind-numbing, however, the narration is good and this is a help towards the finish, which I will do, if only to see how depraved or conversely, boring, it can get. It goes without saying that the book in itself is very well written, descriptive passages leave nothing to the imagination.
I am a massive fan of reading by word of mouth. By this I mean that if a book is recommended to me then I feel the book has done its job in entertain the reader. However, that being said American Psycho" was a book that when recommended to me I was dubious of.
When I started to read the book I was unable to really lose myself as is the case with most books that I choose to read. Thoroughly wanting to embrace this new genre of book I had been introduced to gave me a perfect reason to try Audible.
This being my first ever audio book I was not prepared for how much I would actually enjoy being read a story, as so many of us are read to when we were children. In summation I can say the thing that I have enjoyed the most about this listening experience is that I now feel that a whole plethora of genres and stories have been opened up to me.
This is the first book of this style of writing I have ever read or listened to and so unfortunately I am unable to compare it to anything. I am aware though that this was a popular style of writing within this era and will endeavor to try similar stories.
I did like Nick Landrum's differentiation between male and female characters but felt that the males characters seemed to be very similar. This did not detract from my enjoyment of the book though.
The strongest emotion I felt was that of complete disgust. The graphic nature of the book and the focus on the materialism, perfectionism and vanity of the main character made for some truly horrific scenes.
This was perfectly shown in the chapter where Patrick disembowels a shar-pei dog and murders the owner to try ans satiate his need for violence. It was during this scene that i had to stop and allow my stomach to settle before carrying on my walk home from work.
Whilst this book was not a book that I would normally choose i did enjoy it. I am a complete convert for audio books and i am avidly awaiting my next credit so that I may get my teeth into another great read.
Yes. This book constantly caught me by surprise, and in the process shredded my nerves to breaking point. This book is intelligently written and not a comfortable listen, but is incredibly compelling.
Ellis throws very disturbing comments into the mundane descriptions of the lead characters behaviour. In one scene he talks about Bateman arriving at his flat, performing some everyday tasks and then torturing a small dog to death, completely catching the reader by surprise.
The second sex scene with the prostitute and another female character. Far from being an erotic encounter, I found myself apprehensively awaiting the scene to descend to the brutality we have come to expect from Bateman, shredding my nerves in the process.
Ellis' reflection of every other character around Bateman not recognising each other, calling each other by incorrect names and generally being so self absorbed and in their own worlds that no one is missed when they disappear. This includes Bateman himself, greeting people who he thinks are others throughout the novel. In this instance the most real characters are the ones on the periphery, making it much easier to relate to them and caring more about their fates.
Buy this book. It is highly intelligent and is guaranteed to catch you out, shred your nerves and make you dread what is about to happen.
Having read this myself many moons ago as a teenager and believing myself to be sophisticated and urbane at the time. I thought I would use my monthly credit to re visit it.
I really wish I hadn't, what took for irony and a polemic against the yuppie generation turned out to be with the benefit of age just misogyny and verbal pornography.
Interesting, Pychocotic, Gory
Patrick Bateman just trying to work out how this guy ticks was interesting to me, people who are studying pychology have done whole case studys on him he has many issues.
His voice fits Patrick perfectly and kind of reminded me of Christian Bales voice.
The murders why? you think the film is messed up well the book describes these scenes in a much more graphic manner and there are much worse murders than are shown in the film.
If you really enjoyed the film and want to learn more about Patrick you will enjoy this book but a thing to keep in mind is this is like a diary of a psychopath and Patrick is very vein and so talks about fashion and what people are wearing a lot, so there are many times in the book where there are whole paragraphs dedicated to him simply describing what people are wearing, myself I did not mind this as I found it really got me in his mind set but others may find this boring.
What can I say that has not been said. It is brilliant but in a hideous way. The fantastic mix of bland lists of clothing, food and technology, from times gone by, with the most grotesque descriptions I have ever heard.
Net result a fantastic and addictive listen.
I read American Psycho years ago and really struggled with it, but ploughed through.
I thought I'd give it a go listening to the audiobook. Have to say the narrator did a fantastic job, but the story is just as difficult to follow as it was in print.
Bateman's incessant listing of material goods and items of clothing comes across really well as an audiobook, but, and maybe it's just me, I still struggled with what Easton Ellis was trying to achieve, other than perhaps to shock at some of the more explicit passages. If there's some hidden meaning there it completely passed me by!
Very difficult at times, for different reasons. Sometimes quite boring, sometimes too dark for me to handle - but I get that those factors are important for the character development. It is just that there were extremes which were quite hard to digest. I sort of recommend it, just go in with patience and a strong stomach.
"Be prepared for this book"
Undoubtedly this book is filled with violence and disturbing imagery. So if you are particularly sensitive to these things then perhaps be wary of listening to it. However, it provides a satirical account of our hyper-consumptive way of life; alienation and boredom. The protagonist is utterly deplorable - he is a psychopath after all - but seeing an extreme version of the wealthy late 80's/early 90's New York through his eyes is intriguing. In terms of the audio production the narration is excellent and I will look for other books read by Nick Landrum.
"A good listen!"
The narration was very good, both in terms of pronunciation and animation in the voice. The book was written in such a way, as to make a point, and in my opinion it is a social critique. There are a lot of details and they will sometimes be somewhat boring to a listener, but there are also scenes that are terribly violent and brutal, but both of these characteristics help to underline the author's point, so it works!
"Believe me, u ain't ready for this..."
Absolutely. So addictive. Easton Ellis gave me something, and now it's over, and I'm sad.
Bateman's eye for detail.
Bateman obviously. I think aspects of his character will resonate with most people.
Also, a very interesting insight into 80's yuppie America. So much of the social commentary holds true today.
"The worse book I have ever listen too"
I gave up after listening to 75% of this book. Patrick is unlikable and is nothing more than evil. The details of his violence is horrific. The characters in the book both boring and rude. I don't care if this is some social commentary on the period, the book can not be classed as entertaining or informative. It is garbage and does not deserve its status. I will not listen to or read anything else Bret Easton Elllis has written as this book has turned me off both his style and thinking. Nick Landrum is fantastic in his narration. I wished I had read the other reviews before listening to this disgusting piece of literature. There are some things you don't need to know and wish you never experience, this book is one of them.
I find this review hard to write. The book itself may be (in my view) described as depraved, corrupt, lacking in any literary content, a selection of words looking for a plot and not finding it . There was no content here, one can but wonder how it was published at all, it contributed nothing to American literature. The characters (such as they were) were shallow in the extreme, nothing , nothing at all to recommend it.
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