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Follows the experiences of a quiet, diligent younger brother whose eccentric and tyrannical older brother takes to his bed on his twenty-fifth birthday and resolves never to leave due to his disillusionment with the adult world.
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Es mostren 1-5 de 11 (següent | mostra-les totes)
Depressing story about sad, ugly people.

I think the only character I liked was Mal's Dad. ( )
  hmonkeyreads | Jan 25, 2024 |
I really enjoyed this. The horrific descriptions of Mal's transformation, the way families interact, and sometimes just really don't.

And love. In all its beautiful and ugly manifestations. ( )
  beentsy | Aug 12, 2023 |
The narrator is Malcolm Ede’s younger brother, the closest the reader gets to a name for him. His brother has been acting out in strange ways all of their lives. When they were young, Malcolm would disrobe in public, embarrassing and shaming his family. Malcolm was never comfortable with convention and bristled against normal life.

While in school, a young girl named Lou becomes infatuated with Malcolm, and they began a relationship. Malcolm’s brother is secretly and painfully in love with Lou. As they all age, Malcolm and Lou begin a life together, starting jobs and living together. The younger brother also dates but not seriously and finds work though he does not move out.

On Malcolm’s 25th birthday, after Lou tells him she wants a baby, Malcolm visits his parent’s house where he decides to get into bed and never gets out of it again. He grows larger and fatter until he outgrows the room. He refuses to see Lou, and she camps out on their lawn in desperation, only leaving when her father is in need of her attention.

As the days tick by, Malcolm gets so large that he attracts the attention of the media, and they clamor to get an interview with him. The walls of the room must be knocked down to accommodate his size, and their mother moves into a mobile trailer in the yard where she continues to cook and feed him in humungous proportions. When she is not feeding Malcolm, she is tending to his expanding skin with washes and lotions.

It is really a story about caretaking and suffering. The mother and Lou will forsake their relationships and their own happiness in the service of another person. It is caretaking to its most selfish degree. Their form of altruism can actually hurt those around them. The rest of family sees the insanity in it yet do nothing to stop it or confront it, choosing to hide their own suffering and run away rather than make the healthy changes.

I truly enjoyed the language of the book. Whitehouse uses metaphors expertly and poetically. While I found the ending a bit flat and disappointing, the rest of the book had me hooked. I love the short chapters and the interwoven timelines. The reader is taken on a journey that slowly reveals the answer to the question of why Malcolm Ede got into bed and refused to get back out.
  Carlie | Oct 7, 2020 |
This is a disturbing look into the life of a dysfunctional English family as told by the younger of two sons. Malcolm, the older brother, whose bizzare behavior escalates with age, chooses at the age of 25 for no apparent reason, to stay in bed. He remains there for 20 years, attaining a staggering weight of 100 stones (1400 lbs.) and the title of the fattest man in the world with, unbelievably, a worldwide fan base. His mother happily serves him endless high-calorie meals and snacks, his father retreats to the attic and the younger brother remains hopelessly in love with Malcolm's former girlfriend. The descriptions of the sponge baths given by his doting mother evoke a mental image that is difficult to erase. This book is better than any appetite suppressant ever made. ( )
1 vota pdebolt | Feb 4, 2018 |
Although i like the book, i didn't find it funny. Rather a depressing than humorous. ( )
  HendrikSteyaert | Jan 24, 2015 |
Es mostren 1-5 de 11 (següent | mostra-les totes)
Mr. Whitehouse’s great talent for outlandishly clever description is not matched by a gift for storytelling.
 
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For Mum and Dad. And Rebecca.
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Asleep he sounds like a pig hunting truffles in soot.
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Follows the experiences of a quiet, diligent younger brother whose eccentric and tyrannical older brother takes to his bed on his twenty-fifth birthday and resolves never to leave due to his disillusionment with the adult world.

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Mitjana: (3.21)
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