Ok, this is a sharp left turn from the stuff I normally read.
So this is about a talented perfumer in 18th Century Paris. He’s born in absolute poverty and left to die. Adopted by the local tanner he grows up to find he has an amazing sense of smell unlike anyone else. He becomes a top perfumer but also slightly obsessed with the ‘scent’ of youth. Particularly young women. He starts killing young women in an effort to capture the scent. People wig out and start locking up their daughters which is fair enough. Shit goes sideways and he gets caught but he covers himself in his perfume made from his victims, people go crazy and there is a mass orgy and someone else cops the blame for the murders. This doesn’t make the perfumer feel any better. He eventually ends up in a cemetery, he covers himself in his new perfume, people flock to him and literally tear him apart and eat him. When the perfume wears off everyone agrees it was weird but they did it out of love.
Told you if was a bit different. Apparently it was Kurt Cobain’s favorite book which sort of explains why he wrote a song called Smells Like Teen Spirit.
Where to start with what the actual fuck is wrong with this book. Nothing writing wise. It’s great and a really nice easy read. The actual words and writing style require fuck all thought and you can just concentrate on the story unlike say Vanity Fair where the story is good but the writing fucks you every time (tried to read it 3 times and fuck William Makepeace Thackeray. Seriously). I mean that sincerely it’s awesome to read. Not overly long and pretty action packed. Your interest is held really well.
The plot is what is the fuck wrong or possibly right with the book (it’s also a movie and a Netflix style series now I think). It’s pretty graphic when it comes to describing what happens. There’s a fair bit of sexualised murder of young women. There’s a lot of sex (mass orgy at a public hanging). The perfumers mum leaves him to die as a baby and goes to gaol for it. If that kind of thing triggers you in a massive way I wouldn’t even pick the book up because you’ll wreck yourself. I think it serves as a bit of a commentary on societies obsession with youth and it’s effect on people. I think it also a good piece of commentary on fame and infamy. Also, lets be real here it’s a bit of a low key brag because you’ve read a book by a famous reclusive German author that’s a bit edgy.
Give it a go because you wont be disappointed but don’t say I didn’t warn you.