The Pilo Family Circus - Will Elliott

I did not expect that ending. I expected the ending from the John Cusack/Ray Liotta movie, IDENTITY. 


This one started off devilishly good. Original, dark, funny-as-hell, nasty, twisted, and more words and stuff and things. I loved it. Every paragraph had me either disgusted, intrigued, or laughing my balls off.


Then the scenery changed. We go from Brisbane to the Pilo Family Circus and, oddly enough, the book became boring for me. I found the day in and day out ritual rather banal. JJ's actions didn't shock me because Winston said "The nicer the guy the meaner the clown," so it ended up being all very predictable. I think this is what led me to believe that the book was going to turn out like IDENTITY. The twin sides of the MC, so I just figured everyone was Jaime. Or... Jaime was everyone. Whichever. 


Now, about the two of the clowns (and this is probably only me), they kinda blended together into my head. Goshy and Doopy seemed like the same clown, and it wasn't until the honeymoon scene (which was sheer fucking genius in my opinion; sick and brilliant) that I finally put a wedge between the two clowns and separated them. Both spoke in different speech patterns, but when they weren't talking and the author was just describing them doing things, I had a hard time keeping up with who was who. Gonko, Rufshod, and Winston all had their own separate personalities, but Goshy and Doopy seemed interchangeable. Like I said, though, this was probably just my own brain's problem and not the fault of the author.


Speaking of the author, I've never heard of Will Elliott. I don't know his story, but it supposedly explains what he went through while writing this and strengthens most readers' enjoyment of the piece. I plan on reading his memoir, STRANGE PLACES, as soon as I can talk myself into its twelve dollar price point. Which brings me to the price of this book. I bought it on Amazon for $11.79, blindly. Well, kinda blindly. There's this reviewer I trust whole-hog. If she likes a book, it goes on my TBR list, no questions asked. Then I buy said book, no matter the price. Did I get my $12 worth? Yeah, but only because of that ending.


SPOILERY SPOILS await the SPOILED because SPOILERS. Read the following SPOILERIFIC SPOILED SPOILERS at your own risk...


This motherfucker ended like Stephen King's NEEDFUL THINGS. Which made me think... isn't the entire book a bit like NEEDFUL THINGS? People wishing for shit and getting it. People being set against one another. Everything devolving into an utter clusterfuck of chaos. Yep, the only thing missing was Leland Gaunt, but, when you think about it, Kurt Pilo was kinda that guy. Okay, maybe this isn't completely fair, but when I read the final page of Will Elliott's mindbending carnival story, I felt as if I'd just reread NEEDFUL THINGS. Do not get me wrong. This read like a tribute, not a rip off, so Elliott gets massive points for that.




Welcome back to those of you who didn't want spoilers. I just noted why I liked the book. Yeah, ya kinda missed it... Sorry about that. Oh well, maybe next time.


Should you run out and buy this for $12? Probably not. This will not be everyone's cuppa coco, and I don't want anyone popping back up offering to violate my rectum with their size tens because they spent the last of their meth money on THE PILO FAMILY CIRCUS and were disappointed because it's not their thing. 


In closing, I dug this book, a lot, but the middle droned on. The ending was perfect, though, which completely made up for the lackluster midsection. 


I'm off to read my first bizarro story. Wish me luck.