Book info

The Necrophiliac (2011)

The Necrophiliac (2011)
Rating
3.99 of 5 Votes: 1
ISBN
1550229435 (ISBN13: 9781550229431)
languge
English
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publisher
ecw press
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The Necrophiliac (2011)
The Necrophiliac (2011)

About book: Suzanne, my beautiful Lily the joy of my soul and of my flesh, had started to marbeleise with violet patches. I multiplied the bags of ice. I had wanted to keep Suzanne forever. I kept her for almost two weeks, barely sleeping, feeding myself with what I found in the fridge, drinking too much at times. The tick-tock of the pendulums, the creaking of the woodwork had adopted a particular quality, just like each time Death is present. She is the great mathematician who gives the exact value to the data in a problem.Gabrielle Wittkop has written a disgusting little masterpiece. Reading this evoked several daring writers and poets: de Sade, Bataille, Baudelaire, Viscount Lascano Tegui and even Tom Petty(video of Mary Jane's Last Dance).But Wittkop proves the most daring with her homage to necrophilia, The Necrophiliac, written in a elegant, morose, wickedly humorous and taut style. Granted, it's not there there are many other masterpieces dedicated to necrophiliacs, but that doesn't mean it shouldn't be hailed as such when it is done well.This, as one might surmise, not a book for the faint of heart. The protagonist, Lucien, goes into the minutia of all the bodily manifestations of decay with the eye of a lovesick man who attempts to rationalize the flaws of his beloved. Every fetid smell comes through like Wittkop wanted to write the most horrific scratch and sniff love story. Of course, Wittkop employs a bit of the Lady Gaga factor - shock. Yet, there is such intelligence and care in this novella it's as if she dares you to read it despite the revolting aspect of Lucien. For Lucien is a necrophiliac through and through, without concern for gender or age, but for the story in the flesh he tries to inhabit. It is a the kind of confessional that forces one o examine the seedier psychological elements of ourselves and society at large. After all, Lucien owns his own respectable business. He is, as Wittkop cleverly points out in this passage, an antiques dealer: I don't hate my occupation: its cadaverous ivories, its pallid crockery, all the goods of the dead, the furniture that they made, the tables that they painted, the glasses from which they drank when life was still sweet to them. Truly, the occupation of an antiquarian is a situation almost idea for the necrophiliac. Lucien is a complex character that Wittkop manages to make intriguing and full of all the insecurities and self-delusions as the rest of the us. Even though Lucien is aware of his morbid predilection, he still has enough pride to take offense when people confuse the necrophiliac with the vampire. He goes through a rotating cast of maids who quit because of the smell and the ever-present sense that something is amiss with Lucien: Another, very young, already fat, whose name I've forgotten, declared in a local stored that I smelled like a vampire. Always this old and aberrant confusion between two beings so fundamentally opposed as the vampire and the necrophiliac, between the dead that feed off the living and the living who love the dead. He does have a point there. Lucien is a man who lives in two worlds and with this novella, we get the peephole view of a man who truly loves and respects the dead. That's what is so disturbing about The Necrophiliac, it's the sickest love story you'll ever read. Even in the end, when he absconds with the drowned corpses of a brother and a sister while he is on vacation, there is a sentimentality from Lucien as he re-imagines what their life had been like (in his own twisted vision): I wanted their bodies, which so often in life had to call to each other in secret, to be united finally in death. For I know that these two loved each other as the sky loves the earth. And the one wanted to save the other and the other took the one along. Brought along by love, into the depths, into the salt and seaweed, into the foam and sands, into the icy currents that are stirred up by the stare of the moon and become as agitated as semen.No, it's not for everybody. Taking something this taboo and making it lyrical and engaging is the evidence of a skilled writer. Not to mention the excellent translation skills of Don Bapst. It must have been an arduous process to hit just the right note so that the whole sick train doesn't derail. To understand the nuances that Wittkop threads through the narrative needs a translator who keenly understands quality writing. Gabrielle Wittkop may not be a household name, but nonetheless, The Necrophiliac is a masterpiece. It has not appeared in English before, even though it was originally published in 1972. The taboo in art has been a longtime agent provocateur, which at times, has only been used to shock with superficial artifice. Wittkop employs high art with taboo and that is a rare commodity in our judgmental society.

Nem tudom, miért olvastam el. Tényleg, fogalmam sincs. Talán megfogott a fülszöveg. Vagy még mert sosem olvastam ilyen témájú könyvet. Kíváncsiság.És furcsán hangzik, de sokkal rosszabbra számítottam. Attól eltekintve, hogy milyen undorító témát dolgoz fel, ez egy jó könyv. Halk és hűvös, nehezen emészthető. Gyönyörűen van megírva, furcsa kérdéseket boncolgat, érdekes gondolatok vannak benne. Ne ítéljetek el, mert továbbra sem tudom elfogadni a nekrofilizmust és most már 10000% hogy hamvasztatni fogom magam, de ez minden bizarr vonásával együtt egy különleges könyv volt – a főszereplő mindegyik „szeretőjét” külön személyiséggel ruházta fel. És hogy miért az a másfél csillag levonás? Lucien egy öreget sem ásott ki sosem pedig könyörgöm, egy temetőben volt! Mondjuk ezzel bele lehetett volna mélyedni a gerontofíliába, holott ez egy rövid, tömör könyv volt, egyértelműen kerülve ezt a témát. Volt még pár hasonló logikai bukfenc, de semmiképp sem szeretnék spoiler-es véleményt írni, úgyhogy ezeket hanyagolnám. Ja és akkor nem szeretnék beszélni arról, hogy két „eset” gyakorlatilag megismétlődött. Összegezve? Rövid naplóbejegyzések egy pszichikailag sérült embertől (vagyis egy próbálkozás erre, de nekem ettől bejött és tiszteletem az írónak, amiért megírta ezt a könyvet), aki végtelen magányában és meg nem értettségségének óceánjában a halottakkal és a halottakban keres vigaszt.
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Reviews
Victoria
This book is weird to say the least. The idea of writing and imagining something like this seems weird enough already. It is well written. Most of the time it's disgusting, but still easy-peasy for reading it in a few hours or so. The problem is that I don't really understand the point of this book. Why did Wittkop want to write something like this? Why would anyone want to? Also, the final chapters were rather tiring. The initial feeling of disgust was replaced by pure boredom. All in all, it is an okay book for a few hours you need to while away on the road (if you're not easily put off by descriptions of sex with the dead), but I would strongly suggest reading something else if you can.
Metagion
Sure, the subject matter may not agree with everyone (hardly anyone pictures themselves having sex with the dead) but this subject continues to be pondered over, analyzed, raged against and even partaken in (but no one admits it). Shockingly short, it tells of the "love affairs" a meek, mild little man named Lucien has in his diary. You get to see how things like necrophilia starts (the pathology) and come to understand (if not sympathize) with how and why he does what he does. Excellent read but VERY short.
Sam Quixote
Lucien is an antique dealer, a French gentleman, and a necrophiliac. The book is told from the first person perspective in diary form as we follow Lucien’s dark adventures robbing graves and taking back the recently interred back to his home where his actions with them are described in unflinching detail. There isn’t much else to the story – the types of dead people changes such as going from a young woman, to an older woman, to a man, to a child, and to a mother and her baby. Each encounter is described tenderly in the style of a romance novel except that one of the (unwilling) participants is dead. Gabrielle Wittkop does try to explain her protagonist’s behaviour but I found her explanation to be a bit pat. Lucien masturbates for the first time shortly before his grandmother tells him his mother has died and that he must say goodbye. As he kisses the corpse of his mother he forever links the two things together – sexuality and death; a bit too convenient, no? I think the reality of the mind of a necrophiliac would be less logical than that to the point that their behaviour and their choices would be unexplainable and utterly confounding to the ordinary person. Lucien is a fascinating person though. At times he appears strangely normal as he goes about his ordinary daytime life. At horrifying moments, like when he’s with a dead infant, he clearly sets down what he believes to be the distinctions between himself and an infamous French medieval nobleman called Gilles de Rais who raped and murdered children. I think the shortness of the book (83 pages on smaller than average pages) helps the book as I don’t think I could have finished it at even twice the length. The repeated trysts that Lucien describes with the various corpses are both distasteful and dreary to read by the end of the book and the lack of a plot means the reader is left with descriptions of putrefying bodies and Lucien’s methods of maintaining the bodies for days on end. Wittkop has created an original character in Lucien while gifting him with an eloquent voice that never fails to disturb. Her writing is truly high quality and the book is easy to read for that reason, while being difficult to read because of the subject matter. The Necrophiliac is a morbidly engrossing read that anyone interested in horror or gothic literature might want to check out. There certainly aren’t many books like this out there!
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