I just finished Chuck Klosterman’s latest book (and first novel), “Downtown Owl.” It takes place during the early 80’s in a fictional North Dakota town “where disco is over but punk never happened.” According to the dust jacket it’s a “darkly comedic story of how it feels to exist in a community where rural mythology and violent reality are pretty much the same thing.”
It made me grateful for not living in a two-traffic-light town or having a nickname like Baby Ass Jam.
Perhaps the most amusing part of “Downtown Owl” is a hypothetical fistfight between a stocky maniac who (intentionally) burned his arm multiple times with the cigarette lighter from his Barracuda and a superstar athlete who’s as dumb as he is large.
When diving into Chuck’s books I take my time and reread every sentence. The man makes me guffaw like no one’s business and his syntax is pure wizardry. I accosted him a few years ago at the Newark airport; we were on the same flight so I slinked over to him and blubbered “You’re so awesome, I’ve read all of your books.” It wasn’t unlike a fourth grade girl at a Jonas Brothers concert.