Now, how are you not going to want to read this book based on this title alone? Tell me. You can’t. You want to read it. That’s ok. I did too.
Island of the Sequined Love Nun is Christopher Moore’s fourth novel and one of my favorites. It’s an early work, so it has copyediting issues, but that’s really the only downside I can say about this one. Sometimes his plots don’t hold together all that well. You have plot to move dialogue instead of dialogue to more plot. In this one, you’ve got a pretty coherent story (well, as coherent as it gets with Moore’s books).
The story follows a disgraced pilot as he goes from the terrible situation that cost him a cushy job to a terrible situation in the tropics. You know? I think there are worse ways to go off the rails.
If you read the post on Stupidest Angel, this is the book that introduces the pilot Tucker Case and the fruit bat, Roberto. I can’t tell you much about Tucker except to say he’s a natural screwup. I can’t tell you much about Roberto except to say he’s a fruit bat that wears sunglasses because he no like the light.
Tucker ends up working as a pilot on a remote island in Micronesia after some shenanigans in getting there that introduced him to Roberto.
Really, I can’t say enough about Roberto. Roberto was a more well-developed character in Stupidest Angel (he says about the fruit bat), but he was at his comedic heights in Sequined Love Nun. Sort of like Melissa McCarthy in Bridesmaids. She’s had better parts in films she’s led, but she’s never been funnier.
Moore excels at the absurd and putting the average Joe in an unaverage situation. Is unaverage a word? My Chrome spellcheck seems to not think so. Screw it. If flammable and inflammable can mean the same thing (and don’t even get me started on comprise), then I can say unaverage.
Anyway, Moore likes to put the regular guy as your lead and throw him into a weird situation. A Dirty Job is my favorite and Lamb is his most acclaimed, but Island of the Sequined Love Nun holds up just as well as any of his books.
The best part are the bad guys in this book. You don’t really have a bad guy. There are some shitbags (and the protagonist is kind of a shitbag), but no one is pure evil. Crazy. But not evil.
If you’re looking for an introductory book for Moore, this is a good one. It’s not as heavy as Lamb and A Dirty Job, but it still has his sense of humor throughout. One of the things I appreciate about his books is that you have to pay attention. There are too many little jokes thrown in everywhere.
As a quick detour, not a single one of Moore’s books has been adapted into a show or move, and this is a travesty. Of course, I’d prefer no adaptations to crappy adaptations. But if I may, this book is one of the better options. You don’t have an extensive cast of characters who need exposition to make sense, and there’s very little in the way of special effects (beyond the fruit bat wearing aviators). You’ve got a pretty streamlined story. It would be perfect. Edgar Wright, I’m looking at you buddy. This is your golden ticket. Scott Pilgrim vs. The World was an under-appreciated masterpiece. I think you could make the adaptation comedy gold.
But that’s a wrap on 2016. All in all, I did a good amount of reading. I’ll see you on the other side peeps.