Thursday, March 7, 2019

#BansheeReads: Geek Love by Katherine Dunn

Top 10 Winter Destination-2-2

The Ladies of Horror Fiction team hosts a weekly book club called #BansheeReads. We are an opinionated bunch so there aren’t many times that we all like a book that we are reading. Geek Love, however, is one of those rare gems.


Geek Love is the story of the Binewskis, a carny family whose mater- and paterfamilias set out–with the help of amphetamine, arsenic, and radioisotopes–to breed their own exhibit of human oddities. There’s Arturo the Aquaboy, who has flippers for limbs and a megalomaniac ambition worthy of Genghis Khan . . . Iphy and Elly, the lissome Siamese twins . . . albino hunchback Oly, and the outwardly normal Chick, whose mysterious gifts make him the family’s most precious–and dangerous–asset.

As the Binewskis take their act across the backwaters of the U.S., inspiring fanatical devotion and murderous revulsion; as its members conduct their own Machiavellian version of sibling rivalry, Geek Love throws its sulfurous light on our notions of the freakish and the normal, the beautiful and the ugly, the holy and the obscene. Family values will never be the same.

What we thought about Geek Love:

Tracy from @tracy_reads79

Geek Love takes the norms of our society and turns them on their head. It’s life through a dark funhouse mirror where outcasts are now the desired and “normalcy” is shunned. Dunn dazzles us with her gorgeous grasp of the English language and she draws us into a dark, depraved world of greed, mutation, forbidden lust, and death. A unique book unlike anything I’ve experienced before.

Emily from @bookhappy08

Geek Love was an unsettling and unexpected joy to read, and I am so glad that I finally picked it up. I will continue to be haunted by the characters in this story, and I’m happy I got to spend some time in this weird world.

Laurie from @barksbooks

This is my most favorite book in the entire world and this fourth or so reread of it has not changed my opinion. GEEK LOVE, written in the ’80’s, satisfies all of my reading needs. It is character driven, the plot is highly disturbing and it always hurts my heart even when I know what is coming but I LOVE it so very much. Every horror fan needs to give it a shot!

Jen from @bookdenblog

I’ve decided this book is impossible to review. It’s unlike anything I’ve ever read (which is the best part about it.) Geek Love is a character driven book and all of the characters are horrible and fascinating. It’s disturbing and well written and one of those books you really just need to read for yourself.

Personally, it is one of my (Toni’s) favorite books of all time. The story is twisted and disturbing which is what I love about it. If you haven’t read it yet you absolutely need to do so.

About Author Katherine Dunn

Katherine Dunn

Katherine Dunn is best known for her beloved novel “Geek Love,” which was a finalist for the National Book Award in 1989. She is also the author of the novels “Attic” (1970) and “Truck” (1971). A fourth novel, entitled “The Cut Man,” has been in-progress for decades and was purportedly scheduled for a September 2008 release.

Dunn is also known as a prolific sports journalist in the field of boxing, and has written several articles on the subject.

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