From Publishers Weekly
Clarke's novel, subtitled "A Ghost's Story," is a winning comedy of collegiate (bad) manners, set at Louisiana State University. The narrator, an affluent frat boy named Conrad Avery Sutton III, tells us right off that he's dead, murdered by fellow Gamma Chi Ryan Hutchins, a psychotic hiding behind a charming Big-Man-on-Campus veneer. Conrad makes it his afterlife's work to bring cocky Ryan down, with the help of the frat house's salty cook, "crazy" Miss Etta. She knows Conrad is still on Earth to protect hapless fraternity pledge Tucker Graham, who, like most of the world, sees Ryan as "a big, bright, rising star." It sounds a little like a sitcom, albeit an edgy one, but Clarke fashions a hilariously addictive yarn, with crackling prose and sharp observations that consistently entertain and surprise. He drives the plot over the top with portraits of hypocritical religious fanatics and unrestrained party animals, and into baby Grand Guignol territory with a swath of outlandish killings—but it all works as black farce of a high degree. (July)
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If the movies Animal House
got married, this novel is what their offspring might look like. The narrator, Conrad Avery Sutton III, had it all, including a bid to join Louisiana State's most desirable fraternity. Then a hazing prank went horribly wrong, and Conrad was killed. Now he's a ghost with only one thing on his mind: revenge against the fraternity chapter president who's responsible for his death. The novel somehow manages to be lightly comic and darkly dramatic at the same time. It's a clever commentary on the whole frat scene, as well as an evocative exploration of some of the practical realities of being a ghost. Lots of fun, from the zany author of the cult favorite Lord Vishnu's Love Handles
(2005). David PittCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved