Review: Nine Kinds Of Naked by Tony Vigorito

Stephanie Jane

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Nine Kinds of Naked
ir
by Tony Vigorito
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Nine Kinds Of Naked is bizarre! Essentially it's a fantastically surreal tale of chaos theory in the aftermath of a tornado, but with such an incredible array of characters and interconnected events that I was equally as gripped as bewildered for much of the time. My copy was an Audible download brilliantly narrated by Kristin Kalbli. How on earth did she keep a straight face throughout? I was frequently giggling away at the sharp imagery. Tony Vigorito does a great job of imparting the essence of his scenes and makes even the most ridiculous plot twist seem as though this was the obvious and natural course of events. The revisitation of scenes and actions from different viewpoints is cleverly layered and I loved discovering and recognising minor characters as well as cultural references.

There is a strong political message arcing across the story which encourages all the characters to reject our society's debt-ridden commercial culture in favour of a simple life in the present. This really resonated with how I am living right now, especially having recently enjoyed reading No Baggage by Clara Bensen. I did think that the several long philosophical debates espousing this theory in the second half of the book could use heavy editing though. The pace here grinds to a standstill and had I had a paper edition, I would have been flipping past. However, once we get back to the perfectly suited laid-back vibe of New Orleans, Nine Kinds Of Naked takes off again. I loved the character of J J Speed and the wondrous antics of the wind, Bridget Snapdragon is great and I had to pity Dave Wildhack - the toothpicks! I would love for all the factoids, especially the etymology, to be true. Perhaps they are, but I didn't pause to take notes and can't remember enough detail to now go a-Googling, but I frequently found myself in complete agreement. And now I just want to find a dayglo orange frisbee and Walk Away.
 

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