Saturday, February 4, 2017

Book Review: The Ugly by Alexander Boldizar

The Ugly

By Alexander Boldizar

Genre: Satire/literary fiction/humor

Muzhduk the Ugli the Fourth is a 300–pound boulder–throwing mountain man from Siberia whose tribal homeland is stolen by an American lawyer out to build a butterfly conservatory for wealthy tourists. In order to restore his people's land and honor, Muzhduk must travel to Harvard Law School to learn how to throw words instead of boulders. His anarchic adventures span continents, from Siberia to Cambridge to Africa, as he fights fellow students, Tuareg rebels, professors of law, dark magic, bureaucrats, heatstroke, postmodernists, and eventually time and space. A wild existential comedic romp, THE UGLY tells the tale of a flawed and unlikely hero struggling against the machine that shapes the people who govern our world.

“A comedically absurd tour de force that examines the complex relationship between words and actions.” – Foreword Reviews (editor’s pick, 5 stars)

"[A] muscular critique of conflicts both intellectual and physical. A surprising treat." -- Publisher's Weekly

"A full-on satire of contemporary law as mesmerizing and complex as something lost from Foster Wallace, yet as light in tone as A Confederacy of Dunces." -- Goodreads (#1 New Releases, Sept 2016)

"A bold and hilarious satire, a stunning debut." -- LB Book Notes

"This decade's A Confederacy of Dunces." -- Christoph Paul, Clash Media

My Review

I am confident to say that I have never read anything like The Ugly. It is fantasy mashed with history and then mixed with the modern world. It is funny, entertaining, and packed with adventure. 

Muzhduk the Ugli the Fourth is an awesome character. I was constantly amused by how he named things and people, and his descriptions were simple, yet his story was deep. He is on his way from his Siberian town to Harvard to study words. On the way, he has one unbelievable experience after another. 

If you are looking for a fun brain twister that is well written and filled with humor, check out The Ugly. 

About the Author

Alexander Boldizar was the first post-independence Slovak citizen to graduate with a Juris Doctor degree from Harvard Law School. Since then, he has been an art gallery director in Bali, an attorney in San Francisco and Prague, a pseudo-geisha in Japan, a hermit in Tennessee, a paleontologist in the Sahara, a porter in the High Arctic, a police-abuse watchdog in New York City, an editor and art critic in Jakarta and Singapore, and a consultant on Wall Street. His writing has won the PEN/Nob Hill prize and was the Breadloaf nominee for Best New American Voices. Boldizar currently lives in Vancouver, BC, Canada, where his hobbies include throwing boulders and choking people while wearing pajamas, for which he won a gold medal at the Pan American Championships and a bronze at the World Masters Championships of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. For several years, an online Korean dictionary had him listed as its entry for “ugly.”

On Facebook:
On Twitter: @Boldizar



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