A couple of posts ago, I mentioned how I haven’t really ever read a book that has made me laugh… A Confederacy of Dunces, however, did. It’s true, I cackled with glee several times to the point where people on the train were giving me looks. What a great discovery and what a hilarious novel about the adventures of a belligerent and over-educated manchild.
A green hunting cap squeezed the top of the fleshy balloon of a head. The green earflaps, full of large ears and uncut hair and the fine bristles that grew in the ears themselves, stuck out on either side like turn signals indicating two directions at once. Full, pursed lips protruded beneath the bushy black moustache and, at their corners, sank into little folds filled with disapproval and potato chip crumbs. In the shadow under the green visor of the cap Ignatius J. Really’s supercilious blue and yellow eyes looked down upon the other people waiting under the clock at the D. H. Holmes department store, studying the crowd of people for signs of bad taste in dress.
Our first paragraph is immediately quite amusing which is a good sign. It was certainly good enough to hook the novel’s skeptical publisher. After committing suicide, Toole left his novel unpublished; it was thanks to the persistence of his mother and the good faith of the unwitting reader of the manuscript that it became a great literary success and one of the best comic novels of the twentieth century.
In fact, I don’t think I can really make a post to justify how good it is, because it is that good. Cut the usual pseudo-academic analysis. Officially one of my favourite books. Just go read it, yeah?