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review 2015-03-30 23:37
reality TV meets Stockholm syndrome
The Sex Lives of Siamese Twins: A Novel - Irvine Welsh

Would you want to read a book where the protagonist is fitness fanatic professional who uses abuse and shame to kick her victims clients into shape?

Do you enjoy when this sort of thing happens?

Me neither. And it's a shame because this was actually a good dark and twisty tale that kept me quite entertained. Writing extreme characters is tricky, they can quickly turn into caricatures and any growth or development feels contrived. Lucy is as tough as nails, disciplined, angry and has a potty mouth. Despite being bisexual, she drops fag and dyke bombs regularly. The other protagonist, Lena, is an unusual blend of naive stress-eating Minnesotan and darling of the art world who creates sculptures from animal bones.

Lucy is angry. Lena is needy. Lucy and Lena get inextricably tied together, not unlike conjoined twins. Which is exactly why I picked this book. The title snagged me. And it's not the first time. Many years ago, I read Chang and Eng by Darin Strauss for the same reason. The book about Change and Eng is a fake-memoir, but they both did father children and I was curious as to how they went about it. If you must know what the author made up, (view spoiler).

Back to Lucy and Lena. If the author would have brought them down a notch (or 2 in Lucy's case) this would have been a solid 4 stars. Read it if you like crazy effed-up dark characters with a side of non-con. Read it if this quote makes you smile:

If there are two bitches in a bedroom, I'm the psycho one every fucking time.

catchy title - 5 stars
entertainment - 4 stars
characters - 2 stars
writing - 3 stars
surprise factor - 3 stars
audio narration - 2 stars

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