The best books to violently bludgeon reality

Guillermo Galvan Author Of Blubber Island
By Guillermo Galvan

The Books I Picked & Why

A Clockwork Orange

By Anthony Burgess

Book cover of A Clockwork Orange

Why this book?

This was the first book for me that framed violent street culture inside a dystopian context. Burgess broke the rules. An intelligent writer didn’t have to be some egghead nerd. This was enlightening for me, because throughout my life I’ve had experiences with people who were gang-affiliated. Burgess inspired me to embrace violence and antisocial elements in my storytelling.

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Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World

By Haruki Murakami

Book cover of Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World

Why this book?

I was in a bookstore while visiting Tokyo and knew I had to buy a book by one of their guys. Always judge a book by its cover, especially the title. Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World was my introduction to Japanese literature. It blew my mind. Haruki combined elements of noir, cyberpunk, and surrealism. The book was so cool. I wanted to write something like him.

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Splatterpunks: Extreme Horror

By Paul M. Sammon

Book cover of Splatterpunks: Extreme Horror

Why this book?

After I published Blubber Island, I received messages from readers telling me BI was one of the best Splatterpunk books they’ve read. The funny part was I had no idea the genre existed. In order to sample a range, I ordered Sammon’s anthology. These guys were hardcore! They are what makes slasher movies awesome and hilarious. No apologies, no prisoners taken. With pornographic levels of hyper-violence, SP’s collects writers who found the edge and flew over it on dirt bikes.

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Snow Crash

By Neal Stephenson

Book cover of Snow Crash

Why this book?

This book is ultra-fast-paced. Reading it is like taking a hit of crystal meth then watching Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Die Hard, and the History Channel at the same time on fast forward. This book is 100% politically incorrect. It guts every culture for a comic book effect. In Stephenson's future, we exist as extreme stereotypes for survival the same way prison gangs separate races.

A liberal dose of head slicing, rocket launching, machine gun blasting, and getaway action has your brain stomping for the breaks. This is pure cyberpunk.

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The Pinch Runner Memorandum

By Kenzaburō Ōe, Michiko N. Wilson, Michael K. Wilson

Book cover of The Pinch Runner Memorandum

Why this book?

An ex-nuclear researcher takes his mentally handicapped son out of school because he fails to convince the teachers and parents that the children should be trained in combat for when society inevitably decides to kill all handicapped children in Japan. So, naturally, they set off on a divine mission concerning warring student political factions, an atomic bomb, terrorism, and a shadowy mastermind named Big Shot. Their adventure is absolutely absurd, a demented dark comedy. Yet Ōe uses his profound ability to write with dire seriousness, which results in a mind-bending story.

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