Vernon God Little by DBC Pierre
Publisher: Faber and Faber
The riotous adventures of fifteen-year-old Vernon Gregory Little in a small-town Texas and beach-front Mexico mark on of the most spectacularly irreverent, satirically acute and critically acclaimed debuts of the 21st century so far. The only novel to be set in the barbecue sauce capital of central Texas, Vernon God Little, suggests that desperate times throw up the most unlikely of heroes.
This may be the first 'adult' book I've read for fun. I feel so grown up! Granted, the main character was a fifteen year old but it still counts right? I have to say this is not the book I expected it to be but never the less it was very very good.
The novel starts with Vernon arrested in the sheriff's office. His friend Jesus had just shot up their school killing fellow students and himself. Trying to find the cause of Jesus actions, they arrest Vernon and question him. Upon being released on bail, kinda, Vernon works to clear his name. However, he has no idea how to do that and as the blurb states somehow ends up in Mexico.
Everyone likes a good satire. People read to learn about their society and to develop their own morality. Satires make the reader think about what they have previously accepted by pointing out the flawed system. In Vernon God Little, DBC Pierre analyses the criminal justice system. The reader knows throughout the novel that Vernon is innocent of murder yet the community is in dire need of a fall person so they mold him into one. Even his mother helps incarcerate him. This book made me really think about how we assess a crime when the perpetrator cannot explain himself.
Vernon is brutally honest about the events and the people around him. He gives a faithful first person narration that hits home. The twisting knife in his back was a metaphor that stuck with me. However, there is a light side. The diction is amazing. I definitely was not expecting it and it blew me away. I thought it was very realistic, except for that fact that I don't think I child would have that type of vocabulary (I don't!).
All in all, I really liked this book. The story was very unpredictable and at times admittedly unbelievable but it told an interesting tale and made me question if is really so unbelievable.