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35 of 37 people found the following review helpful
on November 10, 2009
Growing up, I watched a lot of TV. Nickelodeon, mostly. Ah! Real Monsters, Rocko's Modern Life, Ren & Stimpy. They were light-hearted and funny, sure, but deep-down they were kind of unsettling, and with your eyes glued to the tube, you felt like you were given a glimpse into truly twisted minds, minds that were trying their very best to warn their audience of the darkness of adulthood to come. These cartoons with their drab colors and their focus on offal and snot and lint and gas were just too ugly and honest to be on the Disney channel.

"Ass Goblins of Auschwitz" is what happens when those kids, so mesmerized by the cartoons of their youth, grow up and write stories of their own. AGOA is a Nickelodeon cartoon pushed to the extreme and injected with cynicism. You're born, things are good, you start to check out girls, and before you know it a goblin has his finger in your ass and is turning your friends into cider, you're mutating and growing wings and you're becoming one of them and you're rebelling and you'd do anything to get out of the prison you're in.

I promised myself I wouldn't use the word "imaginative", but AGOA is so filled to brimming with the products of a big, Mountain Dew-fueled brain that other words fail. The first half of the book is gripping, every page contains a unique, surreal image or idea, but it does not let up for a moment, and if you are not careful, by the end it could bury you under them. I enjoyed the quick pace and the brevity, but I also found the last twenty pages to be exhausting, a wild dash for the finish could have been sharper, more fleshed out.

That said, I can't wait to see what Pierce will do next. With an imagination as fertile and frenzied as his, I'm sure I won't have to wait long to find out.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on November 24, 2009
Quite possibly one of the most disgusting books I've ever read and I couldn't put it down. I got it for the title, but I finished reading it for the storyline. You will get wrapped up in the story if you aren't careful. I only gave it 4 stars because of the gross factor.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on November 25, 2009
If you thought INGLORIOUS BASTERDS was a strange taste of revisionist history, wait till you check out the second novella from the demented mind who brought you SHARK HUNTING IN PARADISE GARDEN.

Okay, so this technically isn't "revisionism," but a wickedly surreal action-adventure set at a reimagined concentration camp (and it's Alice in Wonderland-ish underground). The entire book reads like an acid-trip WW2 escape-story, packed with dazzling creatures, disgusting villians, and a cool new meaning for the term S.S.

Otto and his co-joined-by-the-ribcage brother are our main prisoners in Auschwitz, a camp where all kinds of freakazoid children are being kept as prisoners and forced to work at a toy-making factory (the unlucky ones are used for experiments in the mysterious Surgery Lab). Their captors are Ass Goblins, a violent race of "soldiers" under the command of Adolf (who is away for most of the story) and also under the eye of The White Angel (a sort-of right-hand man to Adolf). When Otto and his brother are separated, Otto is turned into a giant spider creature by the Ass Goblin surgeons, and his brother learns to use his large wings (and aquired flesh-bike) to begin a revolt against the camp and its leaders.

Pierce once again shows off his amazing imagination and gift for non-stop excitement. The final battle is every bit as twisted and strange as SHARK HUNTING, and while I didn't at first quite know what to make of the ending, I came to find it perfect after re-reading the last two chapters.

If bizarro's your thing, THE ASS GOBLINS OF AUSCHWITZ is a must read.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on May 20, 2012
I didn't read this. It was a gift for a friend. He didn't read it ether. He just looked at the cover, read the synopsis, then we all laughed our heads off for about an hour.

Totally worth the $7.
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31 of 41 people found the following review helpful
on March 10, 2010
I'm a newcomer to this genre known as 'bizarro,' so let's get that out of the way up front. That said, I'm quite the fan of twisted and off-kilter stuff; This book has that in spades. I'll save the rehash of the other reviews and offer up my critique of the book: It's horrible. Not the content, as I've got nothing against a race of ass-creatures exploiting kids for their own amusement. No, the writing is the problem. This book could have been easily written by the warped mind of any 12-year-old boy. I'm not a fan of wordy prose, and really appreciate the stripped-down writing exemplified in this book, but the ideas were so jumbled that it was a bit hard to follow. Considering that I read the book in only a few hours is a testament to the sparse writing and lack of cohesion. There is not a thing I could have possibly missed or forgotten over time, as I have done in the past with longer books. The author will often describe an event quite vaguely, then touch upon that event later on while describing huge changes which were obviously enacted but never described as such. Things like that made the events very hard to follow at times, while other times, such as the end of the book, were so out of left field that you wonder if the author hadn't started a completely new story on you.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
The following is taken from my blog, The Haunted E-Zine:

Did you even know that books like this exist? The Ass Goblins of Auschwitz is one of the most bizarre, grotesque, and disgusting books I've ever read, but for the life of me, I wasn't able to put it down. I literally read the entire 104 page novella in an evening. It's a kick in the pants and a shock to your system you won't soon forget.

First of all, let me address a few criticisms I had about the piece right off the bat (so we can get to the good stuff). The use of Nazi imagery is tacked on in the worst way. It's quite probably a very self-aware decision by the author to provide additional marketability to his concept and add a sort of shock-rock factor. The ass goblins themselves have nothing to do with Nazi Germany. Swastikas are mentioned abundantly, and Adolf Hitler is the name of the most hideous and powerful of ass goblins, but Auschwitz is merely the city they live in, and it really has nothing at all to do with World War 2, the holocaust, real Nazism, Germany, etc. The story would've been just as strong without the additional Nazi imagery plastered on for added appeal. I might argue that in some ways it distracted from the otherwise impressive originality of the story because so many other authors have used the same trick.

Another critique many might have of this book is its use of children as protagonists in such a dark and violent world. The story makes no qualms about tearing children apart, having them being turned into "cider", subjecting them to forced cannibalism, mutation, and just about every unfortunate circumstance you can imagine (like eating your own organs). That being said, the word "Children" in this story is tacked on just as much as the Nazi imagery. The characters behave entirely unlike children in their maturity and complexities, and it's more correct to say that they belong to a species of children whose homeworld is called "Kidland". And that leads into the recurring theme of the novella: childhood/innocence lost.

At least, that's what I thought the theme to be. Much ado was made about the loss of childhood, about how the Ass Goblin scientist (the White Angel) was performing experiments to make the ass goblins happy like children were in their natural habitat, and about how the children, after undergoing certain (spoiler-free) changes, could never go back to really being children. Keep your eyes out for this theme if you choose to read the book and let me know if you agree or not.

The things I loved about this book though were what made it so enthralling. The imagery used was well-described and aggressively original and imaginative. The ass goblins are quite unlike any other thing that has appeared in fiction to date. The characters are also given just enough time to develop enough for us to understand them, yet at times I felt as though they were merely vessels of a much greater story.

The writing style is anything but amateur and there were some truly great lines scattered throughout the piece. The plot is very coherent despite the absurdity of the premise, and the ending, though maybe a bit rushed, is an epic scene that is to be read at least twice.

Do I recommend this book? Well, yes, definitely. But if you are not into bizarro fiction, cannot stomach gore and grossness in your stories (and there is LOTS of both), or are offended by the Nazi overtones or the graphic abuse and killings of "children", then you should pass. Those of you able to approach the book with a truly open mind are likely to come away either with mixed feelings or, like me, immediately searching Amazon for more content by the same author.
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15 of 20 people found the following review helpful
on February 23, 2011
Wow. Wow, wow, wow. I should have known better, but I downloaded this when it showed up on my recommendations based on my reading and liking of "John Dies at the End" and "The Oblivion Society," and saw it was likened to Monty Python style humor. I should have downloaded a sample, because it is quite obvious, within the first few pages, that this book was not for me.

It seemed like the author was trying too hard to throw in anything and everything just for the sake of shock value. You know what? We live in the age of the Internet, NOTHING is shocking anymore, and when you write a book that tries to be as over the top as this one does, all you come up with is a boring acid-trip of disgusting images for the sake of disgusting images. The fact that I downloaded a book called "Ass Goblins of Auschwitz" should be proof to the fact that I've got a pretty warped sense of humor, but I found nothing amusing about what little I was able to get through in this book.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on January 2, 2012
When I first learned of the Bizarro genre I thought it would be some truly weird stuff, I read some descriptions of books and some customer reviews and there seemed to be some strange and twisted books out there. One that I was intrigued by was AGOA, I had already read Abortion Arcade and knew that Cameron Pierce was a go to guy for the truly bizarre work. After having finally got around to purchasing AGOA and reading it I've got to say this book here is what Bizarro is all about. From the Goblins themselves to the descriptions of Auschwitz landscape, Pierce's imagination seems limitless. He's crafted a morbid and disturbing world for our narrator 999 and his conjoined twin, 1001. This book is perfect for anyone interested in Bizarro, it showcases how far you can go within the genre and still maintain an interesting story.
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19 of 26 people found the following review helpful
on September 5, 2013
We purchased this book along with several others to help encourage our 6- an 8-year old daughters to read more often. Each night, we read a chapter from a book before going to bed. With "Auschwitz" in the title, we knew it wasn't going to have a happy ending, but our daughters were horrified at the notion of zombies devouring their brains. They sobbed in my arms for almost 20 minutes when I read the passage about making cider from boiled children.

I gave one star because the book really seemed to arouse my wife, who kept me up MUCH later than the kids did ;)
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on April 11, 2013
If you think surrealistic fiction bordering on balderdash in a setting which has been cruel reality in Nazi Germany is inacceptable for you, do not read it.

If you feel uneasy with descriptions which could just as well be construed as pornographic, do not read it.

If you don't want to read a story centering on pain inflicted on children, do not read it.

In fact, I am not sure about the book myself. Maybe it is an awful book. Right now, I do not think so, right now I see it as work of a genius.

What I see is a allegory on innocence and oppression, surrealism beng used to bang the message right into your head, with no escape route for your rationality. The story is evil and dirty, you feel contaminated by reading it and especially by your reaction to it. Nonetheless it is a strange story which pulls you in, so you have something for your mind and your conscience. I love it, your mileage may vary.
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