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Share your quotes!

This is sort of a book review, sort of not. But how can that be?! Easy. I read John Dies at the End by David Wong (who is Cracked.com editor Jason Pargin’s alter ego) and couldn’t believe I had never stumbled across it before, so now I’m sharing its existence with you. Sort of like a review, but not that in depth. Incidentally, I blame you. All of you. You let me down. Nobody told me what an insane, profanity-riddled, violent, psychotic, trippy and TOTALLY AWESOME book this is. Not just the book, either, the whole online… THING that it is! (Which is awesome.)

Here’s the problem though: I don’t want to really review it and try to break it down into understandable chunks because it would ruin the whole idea. Plus, I’m not claiming this is a book you should read, I’m not claiming this is fabulous fiction, I’m not telling you that you’ll even enjoy it. Like I said, it’s profane and psychotic, like following someone through an epic acid trip full of monsters, demons, other dimensions, possibly heaven and hell and lots of dead bodies. A third of the way through, I felt like I’d already read an entire novel.

THE POINT IS, I liked the book. I highlighted a ton of things that made me laugh out loud, or chortle quietly, or agree wholeheartedly and I’ve decided to share some of them with you! Mostly, I’m doing this in the hopes that you will pick a book and share some of your favorite quotes with the rest of us. Or pick up multiple books and share your favorite parts! Why be picky? (My problem is, if I tried to pick multiple books it’d just degenerate into a million words, so! For now, I’m going to stick with this one.)

OKAY! Ready? Here we go. David Wong is the main character, his best friend is named John and the whole thing is told from David’s first person perspective. So, that’s your setup. Here are a few of the things I found amusing.

- “I didn’t want to tell this story, the story of me and John and what’s happening in Undisclosed (and everywhere else, I guess). I can’t tell the story without sounding as nuts as a… a nut bush, or — whatever nuts grow from.”

- “Welcome to freakdom, Dave. It’ll be time to start a Web site soon, where you’ll type out everything in one huge paragraph.”

- “Dark matter makes up 99.99 percent of the universe, and they don’t know what it is. Well I know. It’s apathy. That’s the truth of it; pile together everything we know and care about in the universe and it will still be nothing more than a tiny speck in the middle of a vast black ocean of Who Gives A Fuck.”

- “Fuck that. Fuck that idea like the fucking captain of the Thai Fuck Team fucking at the fucking Tour de Fuck.”

This is the entirety of Chapter 11, which is called By the way…
“Looking back, if I had gone in and seen what was in the toolshed, I would have put a bullet in my own skull one minute later.”
And that’s it. The story continues on, getting back to the toolshed at a far later date. There’s also a chapter called Shit Narnia. But I digress…

“And watch out for Molly. See if she does anything unusual. There’s something I don’t trust about the way she exploded and then came back from the dead like that.”

“‘Are you thinking what I’m thinking?’ asked John.
‘That if Franz Kafka were here his head would explode?’
‘Actually, yeah.’”

So, yeah. That’s that. Just a very select few of the 46 I apparently highlighted while reading on my Kindle (where’s your iPad, nerd?!) and I think before purchasing this book I had maybe a dozen highlights total, ever, on said Kindle. Hence the inspiration for getting you to share your most quotable books! This is definitely up there for me.

Let me reiterate this point though: I’m not telling you to read this. It’s laced with penis jokes, awesomeness, crazy monsters and lots of swearing. If you enjoy that sort of thing, as I so obviously do sometimes, then by all means! Pick it up. Go to the website, bask in the awesomeness, become engulfed in the whole thing that might leave you feeling slightly paranoid and afraid when it’s finished. (Or maybe hopeful if you’re a deranged bastard…)

If not? Ignore it and enjoy the fun quotes and then share yours! Sharing is caring, people! Speaking of which, feel free to share with me over on the twitters or email me. Happy quoting, book nerds!

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15 comments

  • One of my favorites from JDATE that comes to mind is, “Keep an eye on Molly. There’s something about the way she exploded and came back to life that I don’t trust.” – John

  • I read this book online before it was re-released in hardback. When I was a regular at Cracked. I don’t post on the forum anymore, but I’m glad I was able to read JDatE. (not the jewish dating site) If you want a giant leap away from the norm, this book is for you. It’s kind of like the show Supernatural, but on crack. A director/screenwriter has bought the rights, but I haven’t heard any details of a film in the works.

  • I’m glad you’re sharing this! I read this a few years back when it was online, and the first line that really GRABBED me went something like, “And then she exploded into snakes.” I was hooked from that moment on. The whole book is just full of imagery and jokes that I never thought possible, and it’s just well-written prose. “David Wong” is hi-larious.

  • “Nothing travels faster than the speed of light with the possible exception of bad news, which obeys its own special laws.”- The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.

    Great suggestion. You had me at – “Dark matter makes up 99.99 percent of the universe, and they don’t know what it is. Well I know. It’s apathy. That’s the truth of it; pile together everything we know and care about in the universe and it will still be nothing more than a tiny speck in the middle of a vast black ocean of Who Gives A Fuck.” This alone makes it a must read! Thanks!

  • Suddenly . . . a sound . . . the strangest, undoubtedly, that these lonely cliffs of France had ever heard, broke the silent solemnity of the shore.

    So strange a sound was it that the gentle breeze ceased to murmur, the tiny pebbles to roll down the steep incline! So strange, that Marguerite, wearied, overwrought as she was, thought that the beneficial unconsciousness of the approach of death was playing her half-sleeping senses a weird and elusive trick.

    It was the sound of a good, solid, absolutely British “Damn!”

    –The Scarlet Pimpernel

  • RAVEN THINKS THIS SITE AND QUOTES OF A BOOK AND SITE DESERVES A : SMILE BUT FROWN OF SUCKNESS IN MY FISHY /RASPBERRY SMELLY GENITALS ; GREAT IDEA BUT DUMB POINTS FOR MY PISSY PANTYS; COOL THINKING BUT DUMB IDEAS,WITH MY BOOBS IN A HERNIA ; IS INSPIRING BUT BURNABLE BY BY CURLING IRONS;

    ALL IN ALL; ALL I HAVE TO SAY IS , WTH,IM LAUGHING ,JUST NOT AT THE BOOK AND NERDIST SUCK JUDGMENTAL JOKES,ETC; THANKS BOOK FOR MAKING ME FEEL NOT BETTER ; HAVE A WONDERFUL DAY ? ; REEK U RAVEN(ME:NUTS HUH: I KNOW GO SOMEWHER ELSE ,IM GOIN COMMENTS) AND REEK U NERDIST,(SUCK IT TRIX ) …

    SINCERELY ,RAVEN (SARAH PALIN IS A INSIDE JOB OF LOVE)

  • That book was amazing! Never have I literally laughed out loud (sometimes while reading in places where I was supposed to be quiet) so many times reading a book.

    One of my favorite quotes: “Every man is blessed with his gifts from the Lord. One of mine happens to be a penis large enough that, if it had a penis of its own, my penis’s penis would be larger than your penis.”

  • I’ll stop after these ones, I promise.

    Kutuzov did not understand the significance of Europe, balance, Napolean. He could not understand it. Once the foe was annihilated, once Russia was delivered and placed on the highest degree of her glory, for this Russian man, as a Russian, there was nothing more to do. For the representative of the national war there was nothing left but death. And so he died.
    —Lev Tolstoy, War and Peace

    It is known that man has the ability to immerse himself entirely in one subject, however insignificant it might seem. And it is known that there is no subject so insignificant that it will not expand to infinity, if attention is concentrated on it.
    —Lev Tolstoy, War and Peace

    —Then—said Cranly—you do not intend to become protestant?—
    —I said that I had lost the faith–Stephen answered–but not that I had lost selfrespect.—
    —James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

    I told Antonia I would come back, but life intervened, and it was twenty years before I kept my promise.
    —Willa Cather, My Antonia

  • “I suspect that I am the result of particularly weak conception on the part of my father. His sperm was probably emitted in a rather offhand manner.”
    —John Kennedy Toole (A Confederacy of Dunces)

    [“Y]ou must begin a reading program immediately so that you may understand the crises of our age,” Ignatius said solemnly. “Begin with the late Romans, including Boethius, of course. Then you should dip rather extensively in early Medieval. You may skip the Renaissance and the Enlightenment. That is mostly dangerous propaganda. Now that I think of it, you had better skip the Romantics and Victorians, too. For the comtemporary period, you should study some selected comic books. [. . .] I recommend Batman especially, for he tends to transcend the abysmal society in which he’s found himself. His morality is rather rigid, also. I rather respect Batman.”
    —John Kennedy Toole (A Confederacy of Dunces)

    As a general rule, people, even wicked people, are far more naive and simple-hearted than one generally assumes. And so are we.
    —Fyodor Dostoevesky, The Brothers Karamazov

    [“I]magine that you yourself are building the edifice of human destiny with the object of making people happy in the finale, of giving them peace and rest at last, but for that you must inevitably and unavoidably torture just one tiny creature, that same child who was beating her chest with her little fist, and raise your edifice on the foundation of her unrequited tears—would you agree to be the architect on such conditions? Tell me the truth.”

    “No, I would not agree,” Alyosha said softly.”
    —Fyodor Dostoevesky, The Brothers Karamazov

    All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.
    —Lev Tolstoy, Anna Karenina

  • I didn’t read past “profanity-riddled, violent, psychotic”, but this is going at the top of my library queue, as soon as I finish the last 40 pages of Horns.
    Thanks for having the same reading sensibilities so I can rip your motivation to do all the research!

  • I will be picking this book up next. I’m finishing up Ancestor right now. I just wanted to let you know of another great psychotic, violent and funny book, “Beat the Reaper” by Josh Bazell. The book follows a Dr. Peter Brown, a medical resident in the Federal Witness Protection Program, through a day at a hospital as he tells us about his past and his time as a mob hit man, though now his past is catching up with him.