Review from a Transgressive Fiction Fan
A very beautifully layered novel that one can almost taste the narrative. Considering it deals with cannibalism among other things this may not be your type of flavor – but it is an essential read by one of the great English language writers alive. What strikes me about the novel for me personally is the jaded aristocratic voice that runs through it. All of Dennis Cooper’s novels have a strong visual sense – and usually with the minimal language. “The Marbled Swarm” is different because the text is so dense and beautifully spread out – that its just a joy to go over the sentences over and over again. It has its own music, and the images that come from the “music” is both funny and highly poetic.
“Insightful” Review from a Mainstream Reader
It wouldn’t be correct to say I detested this book: that’s the reaction that the author is going for, whereas in fact I was too bored to muster any type of strong feeling at all. Mistaking the use of cannibalism, kiddy rape and incest for some type of cooler-than-thou nihilist credo, and sophomoric pretension for eloquence (the titular “marbled swarm”), this book is something like a French rewrite of Less Than Zero – except stripped of the wit, intelligence, self-awareness and satirical vigor that made that book so worth reading.