- Rant (novel)
infobox Book |
name = Rant: An Oral Biography of Buster Casey
image_caption = First edition cover (wraparound view)
cover_artist = Jacket design: Rodrigo Corral
language = English
publisher = Doubleday
May 1, 2007
media_type = Print (
pages = 319 pp (first edition, hardcover)
isbn = ISBN 978-0-385-51787-4 (first edition, hardcover)
"Rant: An Oral Biography of Buster Casey" is a
novelby Chuck Palahniukreleased on May 1, 2007. [ [http://www.chuckpalahniuk.net/community/showthread.php?threadid=25087 Chuckpalahniuk.net.] Retrieved July 12, 2006]
"Rant" is told in the form of an oral
biography. When the story begins, the reader discovers that the main character, Buster Landru "Rant" Casey, is already deceased. Throughout the book various people discuss their memories of Buster and the world he lived in, presenting stories in an occasionally conflicting timeline.
The book became a national bestseller in May 2008 and remained on the list for 6 weeks. [ [http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/29/books/bestseller/0629bestpapertradefiction.html.] ]
Victor Turneris briefly quoted as one of the contributors.
Buster Casey was born in the rural town of Middleton, the son of Chester and Irene Casey, at birth he was gifted with a sense of smell and taste far more advanced than any other human.
His nickname "Rant" came from a childhood prank involving animal organs which resulted in numerous people getting sick. As each person threw up, they made a sound that resembled the word "rant," which became a local synonym for "vomit" and Buster's nickname. One of the book's subtle themes is that two people can see the same person very differently. This is partly made known by the fact that Rant's parents even called him by different names. His mother Irene calls her son Buddy and her husband Chet. Rant's father Chester calls his wife Reen and his son Buster, while Rant simply calls them "mom" and "dad".
As a child Rant discovered a massive wealth that turned the small town's economy on its head. He then became obsessed with getting bitten by rabid animals along with venomous snakes and spiders. After getting bitten by several highly toxic spiders Rant discovered that their bites came with an unusual physical side effect. He uses this to get out of school and eventually threatens his way to an early diploma and a rather large check that he uses to leave town. It isn't until Rant arrives in the city that it becomes clear that the novel takes place in a dystopian future, where urban dwellers are forcefully divided by curfew into two separate classes: the respectable Daytimers and the oppressed Nighttimers.
Rant becomes a Nighttimer and finds himself swept up in the Nighttimer lifestyle that mostly revolves around Party Crashing, a covert
demolition derbyplayed out on city streets at night. The game is organized by an unknown entity and is set during a designated window of time. The object of the game is to crash, not too forcefully, into other players who sport a certain "flag", such as a Christmas tree on the car's roof or the words "Just Married" scrawled on the rear windshield. As Rant becomes increasingly involved in Party Crashing he meets Echo Lawrence, a fellow crasher and the girl with whom he falls in love. Together they start a nationwide rabies epidemic that eventually erupts into zombie-invasion-like proportions that calls for those infected with rabies to be shot and killed on sight.
Rant eventually dies during a Party Crashing event. His death is viewed and listened to by millions on national television and the "Graphic Traffic" radio show. However, when the car is pried open, his body is somehow missing. After his "death" in the novel, many interviewees share their speculations about Rant's strange fate and its implications for society along with the rabies outbreak.
Some interviewees and friends of Rant speculate that crashing a car while in a given state of mind, will jar a person outside of time. Once this is accomplished, they can then go back and kill off all of their ancestors, in turn, making them immortal. Or they can, through incest, make themselves into something more than human. Rant's friends believe that he has gone back in time to stop Green Taylor Simms, a previous time-traveling incarnation of himself, from raping his mother. Rant fails, and opts to change his name to Chester before he weds his mother and helps raise himself.
During his "Rant 2007" tour, Palahniuk has indicated that he will continue to write two more books based on Rant, to be released tentatively in
2011and 2013but also stated that he will be writing other books in between, with his next to be titled "Snuff". [cite web|url= http://pine-magazine.com/content.php?id=746|date= May 8 2007|accessdate=2007-05-17 | title="Interview with Chuck Palahniuk" by Dan Frazier |work= Pine Magazine]
* [http://www.randomhouse.com/doubleday/palahniuk/rant/ Official "Rant" novel website]
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