book review: ‘life kills’ by miles vertigan

Hey kids that’s a snap of my old pal buddha havin a giggle at a hipster party we were at and next to him is that new book by miles vertigan called life kills which i’d heard sorta avoids the middle path but is zen funny so anyway the minute my copy came in the mail courtesy of sleepers publishing i spotted the plane on the front cover and i thought like hello i’m gonna read this in the sky maybe on one of those planes that represents the sole virgin of australia or maybe on one of those jets that fly in memory of every albino kangaroo that’s ever been trapped in a red triangle so anyway i dropped the book into my carry-on luggage like prontissimo cos y’know reading life kills on a plane is sorta like reading lord of the rings while holidaying in a tower in mordor or putting on some heart shaped glasses so you can watch lolita cos without those heart shaped glasses you couldn’t really understand the quality of humbert humbert’s love could you so when i boarded i strapped myself into 19a and the seatbelt light went ding and i opened life kills with that thing they call bated breath cos the suspense had been killing me really it had and i started reading page one which opens with some terrorist showing up on a plane dressed like a shimmying wealthy german industrialist circa 1923 and he’s ready to delete some z-list celeb passengers like norbert pike the frontman for exponentially irrelevant pesco punk outfit fish fuck fish fuck fish and while this terrorist shimmies round we meet the stewards bubbles and sparkles and the best goddamn flying team in the sky consisting of the studly lantern jawed brad and his best buddy chad who’s just a head without a body and gets to do lots of rolling around and while they’re all attending to their various tasks an inflight infotainment system screens shows like when 911 calls get chatty so anyway getting back to my real life mid air adventure the next time i looked up from life kills my virgin plane was preparing for landing and the guy next to me embarked on what looked like an epileptic fit but as it turns out it was just some sort of flight induced nausea involving limbs that acted out though i secretly wondered if it was because the poor little pumpkin had looked over my shoulder at the book i was reading and decided he’d die from one of its fictional diseases like jalapeño madness or rampant porn dyslexia or accentarrhea or malignant hubrisoma but anyway folks i’m really gettin off track cos this here is supposed to be a literary review and not a blow by fatal blow personal diary but don’t blame me for my inability to distinguish between the two styles of writing cos i was never taught the difference at tertiary level so anyway what you probably didn’t know is that miles according to his official bio lives and writes in a nearby parallel universe and might i add that in his parallel universe no one bothers too much with capitals or punctuation and though it can really do your head in pretty bad it can also lead to inspired meditations like the one on bruce willis which goes something like or maybe identically like “i’d unconditionally love to put it to all you guys out there that wouldn’t your life be a whole lot better if you had bruce willis’s circle of willis i mean as far as raging torrential cerebral blood flow goes he has to be the pinup boy of the millennium hasn’t he like haven’t you ever wondered how he does that little half grin and that vacant i’ve searched deep deep inside and it comes as no surprise that i found absolutely nothing apart from an autographed cd of my greatest hits saying something like hey bruce you da maaaaan bro all the best i love you man and take care with everlasting love hugs and viscera spearing kisses from bruce” and well honeypies i don’t know about you but i like my satire served extremely dark on my inflight meal tray and life kills is cooked just the way i like it cos it aims its glock at reality tv and consumerism and specific and general classes of modern idiot and it takes big u turns you don’t see coming and well kids can i just say thank god for australian writers who refuse to write colonial drivel infused with big megadoses of blando cos life kills isn’t just cutting edge it’s over the cutting edge with a back cover that declares it to be disturbingly like being inside charlie sheen at 30,000 feet but really darlings to me it’s like being inside charlie sheen inside that bbc tv show come fly with me inside truman burbank inside winston smith inside bernard marx inside maybe a weird parallel universe version of that harrison ford flick air force one well maybe not air force one and definitely not snakes on a plane but something involving non presidential non reptilian violence at 30,000 feet if you know what i mean but you won’t really know what i mean until you stop reading this kinda boring post mortem gabfest and go snatch up a copy of life kills and if you reeeeally persevere with it even though it’s reeeeally intense you’ll eventually hear that precious knockety knock knock on the door and you and your inflight meal tray will be rewarded with a dénouement as satisfying as an extravagant shower of je suis un rockstar dom pérignon and tiger penis schnapps and happy snax and daiquiri faux saladette fritters and hypersynthetic omelettes and once you’ve finished the last sentence still strapped into your allocated seat you’ll look out the window with foggy sentimental eyes at the wing of your local plane and at the local clouds wallowing by and you’ll say out loud wow thanks miles you really are the bestest most wonderfullest writer in your parallel universe and thanks for the like amaaaazing ride.




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