By Nick Cave
"The Death of Bunny Munro" is a fantastic novel for all admirers of Nick Cave’s writing style. But be prepared to follow a decadent protagonist through his adventures in depravity. For those of us who can, there is a significant payoff!
Credit: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Death_of_Bunny_MunroBunny Munro’s wife commits suicide and leaves him with their nine year old son, a confused but curious boy who looks up to his father and is willing to learn from him about the life of a travelling salesman. The late Mrs. Munro haunts Bunny as an apparition and their son as a silent guardian until the very death Of Bunny Munro. Bunny Jr. spends time in his father’s car with an encyclopedia in his hands, which gives this novel an educational angle, as chapters from encyclopedia are read when a certain term pops out in a dialogue between Bunny and his boy.
The Death of Bunny Munro’s main character is a chain smoker, an alcoholic, a sex fiend, and acts irresponsibly, but deep inside the bond between him and his son pulsates and just waits to explode into an acknowledgement of love and regret. Bunny would often neglect his son and let him sit at the back of their car just to engage in one more flirting session with a girl or a woman to whom he was trying to sell fake cosmetic products. Important names of today’s music scene are also mentioned as objects of Bunny’s lust, and those are Avril Lavigne and Kylie Minogue. Nick Cave personally apologized and thanked them for giving him an inspiration for his book. He does not only mock them, but society as a whole, he mocks men and women struck by midlife crisis, and has a point. His protagonist is also in midlife crisis as are all those aging women. They try to do something to fix themselves and prove their shallowness: Bunny engages in sex with as many women as he can physically handleCredit: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Death_of_Bunny_Munro. Those women find Bunny attractive and want to fill their emptiness Meanwhile some of them even want to buy a certain cosmetic product from Bunny’s basket, thinking it will make them prettier and more attractive. The only character who is able to progress in the whole story is Bunny Jr. but Nick Cave is honest here and doesn’t let the emotions out – the little kid still loves his father although he is irresponsible to the point of not being able to take care of himself.
Full of mockery towards the modern world, rich with penetrating humor, "The Death of Bunny Munro" ends in Dostoyevsky-like style, with repentance and accolades of love. A phantasmagoric scene, supposedly of his death, where he sees all women and adventures past, aims to show us that the hour of death and the hour of repentance are one and the same. Some people, like Bunny Munro, may remain sinful until the end, but don’t we all? The story even gets a hidden Christian message – let the one who has no sins throw the first rock. We might not throw the first rock at Bunny, because he describes what most of us are like deep inside – imperfect! That’s where Nick Cave’s ingenuity truly lies. "The Death of Bunny Munro" is one of the sincerest stories of death and the hour of judgment that makes you think about your own final hours. This is the intensity of feeling that all literature should be aiming towards.
|Genre(s)||Black comedy, Absurd,Philosophical novel|
|Publisher||Canongate Books (UK)
Faber & Faber (US)
|Publication date||September 2009|
|LC Classification||PR9619.3.C4 D43 2009|