This new memoir (NOVEL!) by Paul Tremblay is a literary experience. The format is unique. I listened to the audiobook, with multiple narrators, and found that this brought the oddly designed book interior to life in ways that work very effectively. The notion of a memoir being read by one of the characters, who insists it’s a novel – the ambiguity of truth from story to story, all against a running list of punk and post-punk bands and titles, introspective moments and supernatural segues that leave the truth of the matter – memoir, or novel – or novel about a memoir… completely and very satisfyingly confusing.
Mercy is looking for proof. Or… Mercy knows or is the truth. Art (Punk Art to his friends) believes some very strange things about his long time, off and on relationship with a girl he met at a funeral. The title is a little bit of a diversion, as the Pall Bearer’s Club (at least its initial iteration) is a plot device… and then is not… and then, maybe, is not again.
If you like novels that leave you thinking, that challenge you and catch you by surprise, this book is for you. Totally engaging and wonderfully presented.
The audio is very well produced and directed, and XE Sands as Mercy is deserving of an award unto herself. Now, I think I’m going to get an old Polaroid camera from eBay and head off to the graveyard, because… I still have questions.