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Out of Touch Paperback – December 28, 2010
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The Amazon Book Review
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About the Author
Brandon Tietz is an American-born writer and illustrator. He attended the University of Kansas and currently resides in Kansas City, MO. Out of Touch is his debut novel. Visit him online at www.myspace.com/outoftouchthebook. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Brandon Tietz is a name familiar from my time at Chuck Palahniuk's website. He's an author, active on the boards, posting excellent short stories. Out of Touch is his debut novel. I see an interview with him on the site. So I write down the name of the book, of the author, hoping to pick it up sometime soon. See if the novel is as good as the stories he's crafting.
You want a synopsis? You want me to set up this review? F that, the synopsis is up there. You already know where Aidin comes from; what he's up against. Let's not talk about what it's about. Let's talk about how GOOD it is.
The prose has the same sensibilities that attracted me to Chuck Palahniuk--the fierce present tense, the resounding chorus and rhythm of the writing, the nihilistic sheen--a fast, furious read. But this isn't all style--the substance holds up, enhanced by a fearless writer's delivery, pushing at us scenes and thoughts we may not be ready for--coke (not the kind in a red can, either) and booze and dirty bathroom sex. And that's in the first few pages, and to some extent, yeah, we've seen coke and orgies before. But by the time you start connecting Lincoln Logs and terrorist activity and the themes of duality and identity, you realize that the stack of pages in your hands, surrounded by the innocence of Braille and the cute readhead on the cover--it's not what you think it is. This is rocket fuel you've got here. This is a young writer without a filter. He's ready to dose you, raw. And better than that--you can tell he's put the work in to produce writing like this. I don't have to ask him, but I know he's got rejection slips stashed somewhere--a writer's badge of honor. I know he rewrites his ass off. I know he doesn't just write or rewrite--he crafts. It's that feeling of being on a roller coaster--I know I'm in the hands of a professional, I know that the roller coaster is well-crafted and safe and the turns and twists and dips are by design--yet you still raise your hands over your head and scream with glee because maybe, just maybe, you're in danger for real.
When I was finished with Out of Touch I knew it was a pretty damn good book. It's one I'm going to recommend, one I'm going to remember--two compliments of the highest order that any reader can bestow--but what really excites me is what's next from Mr. Tietz. Where will he go? What happens when his edge gets sharper, his tools more refined, his life experiences and ideas stacking up just so to fuel his next project? And his next one after that? And after that? So he's a guy I'm keeping an eye on. You should too.
And if you are ready--or even if you're not--Out of Touch is a must-read.
Funny thing, though, because while Aidin may wake up one day to find himself stripped of his ability to "feel," it's safe to say that he lost all "feeling" long before his condition ever kicked in.
So our numb and disconnected narrator comes to grips with that fact. You'll hear about the "twist" ending and how it comes out of left field, but not really -and I won't give away that ending of course, but it has to do with a choice that Aidin makes when given an ultimatum. His choice may not make a lot of "moral" sense to some, but this is a guy who's tired of running. He already ran from Himself during the years and events leading up this story, and this is the story of how he learns to face himself and who he is.
It can be dark, sad even, but also enlightening and fun for the reader -and that complicated dynamic is what makes Out of Touch such a great read.
The writing style is also fun in the fact that it's familiar, and yet brand new -speaking to the "Palahniuk/Ellis" influence.
Tietz isn't "imitating" these influences as much as going all out in making them known and giving a certain due -and it's all there -from the airplane going down in the opening scene to the support groups.
Think Quentin Tarantino: His influences are not only obvious, but celebrated, played with, and improved upon.
It's got a very Modern Feel after all is said and done. It's a fast read, but a great way to spend a short time.
Now, i'm being Serious, jump on this bandwagon before it starts it's engine, or cracks it's whips. In fact jump on it before it is even a bandwagon.
this review comes after my second read of the book in less than six months. I even went as far as reading it the second time with pencil and hilighter. Annotating all the parts I loved so much. This is the kind of book that you'd walk through red lights reading. If only you got the chance. I read it in one sitting and that is just a nod to Tietz. because at every corner there was a new question I wanted to know the answer of. Every single chapter gave you just enough of a taste to keep you hanging. and that's essentitally what makes this such a enthralling read. well, it's that teamed with the alluring charm of our charismatic,arrogant and inquisitive first-person narrator,--that we love to hate right before we just love to love him--Aidin.
Tietz creates a thrilling, laugh-out-loud funny, original story in a sort of early Chuck Palahnuik/Bret Easton Ellis hybrid with a twist that will have you flicking the pages backwards re-reading it, just to be sure.
Do yourself a favor. Read-This-Book! You will not regret it. The tension is high from early on, and doesn't relent, and then BAM! you're hit with the truth, and you just sort of sit there for a moment and say "Wow. Just wow." At least I did. It doesn't give up there, however. It pushes on, keeping you locked in to the very last word, making sure that you will not soon, if ever, forget this story.
Most recent customer reviews
A very well plotted book with diction that just keeps you reeled in.Read more
Out of Touch by Brandon Tietz is about Aidin, a wealthy socialite who at twenty-four has spent his entire life in a...Read more