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The Teleportation Accident – First Impressions ~ #HoBBookClub, Nov. 2013

The November book for the House of Blog Bookclub is The Teleportation Accident by Ned Beauman.

Longlisted for the 2012 Man Booker Prize and named book of the year by several publications, this is not the type of book I would usually dream of picking up.

The blurb gave me mixed feelings – partly it sounded intriguing and amusing but partly it sounded a bit jumped up and pretentious. But then I have these feelings about a lot of ‘literary fiction’ – I usually have my nose in urban fantasy and YA sci-fi after all.

I am now a little over 25% through the novel and my mixed feelings haven’t gone away.

It is an incredibly wordy read. I have had to look up quite a few words in the dictionary to work out what they mean and there have been many occasions where I have had to reread (paragraph long) sentences because they were so convoluted that I had forgotten how they started by the time they ended.

It seems to spend a lot of time talking and not a lot of time doing and yet is still somehow compulsive to read.

I dislike the main character Egon Loeser intensely but I think I’m maybe supposed to not like him all that much. He likes the sound of his own voice, thinks an awful lot of himself and his sexual morality is somewhat questionable – I spend quite a lot of time wanting to slap him.

A second narrative voice has been introduced at the point I am up to and this character is equally unlikable which hasn’t particularly endeared the book to me. I have nothing against dubious narrators but they need to have some sort of redeeming feature and neither of these two have one in my opinion.

But I am a mere quarter into the book so who knows, maybe they will change and something will actually, well, happen – for a book set during the rise of Hitler it is all very dull. Even all the drug-taking has been pretty boring due to the verboseness of the writing.


The House of Blog Book Club is entirely online so if you want to join in, grab yourself a copy of the book and start using the hashtag #HoBBookClub on Twitter, join the Facebook Group or just comment on the November Book Club blog post – Look forward to seeing you there!

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