Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Review of FAT RICH DOG by Stephen Beam (Jagged Books, 2012)

Penned by the prolific Stephen Beam, author of The Teddy Bear Singularity, Monster in the Tree and many others, this novella is a madcap existential adventure featuring a colorful cast of characters, including a trained serpentine assassin, Satan; Gil, a Filipino ritual-circumciser-cum-mad-scientist; and the titular character, Jake, a bio-modified dog whose amazing physiognomy belies his less than amazing life—wasted watching television, smoking, eating Velveeta nachos and vacuuming his own fur from the sofa. One day, Jake decides he wants more, and embarks on a journey of self-discovery which leads him to learn to read, piss on a religious proselytizer, accidentally acquire a pet cat and promote bizarro fiction, among other things. The outcome is genuinely surprising, yet strangely satisfying, and as a creature equally blessed and cursed with self-consciousness, Jake’s story is an allegory of our own as human beings (or bio-modified monkeys, if you will). On one level, we simply want to satisfy our physical appetites for food, sleep and sex; on another, deeper level, we need spiritual fulfillment. Through it all, we’re haunted by the specter of death. A quick, enjoyably compelling read which teaches us that, I quote, “Life is more than banging poodles or smelling asses.”


  1. A great review of a very entertaining book...If you prefer a real book rather than the Kindle - you can get it from

  2. This is out in a new paperback.