"Fugitives and Refugees is more than a book about the weird people and dark corners of Portland. Tucked surreptitiously between chapters are eleven 'postcards,' which, cobbled together, make up a sort of memoir of Palahniuk's years in his adopted city. Told in Palahniuk's signature voice a blend of nihilism, pathos, and biting wit these stories make the book. Most readers will never drive out to Newberg to the self-cleaning house, or get groped in the Shanghai tunnels. But any reader with an ear for a well-turned anecdote will appreciate these dark, funny, poignant stories of life on the fringe. A few may even discover that the world outside their Outback windows is a bit more fascinating, and less predicatable, than they'd realized." Chris Farley, Powells.com (read the entire Powells.com review)
Synopses & Reviews
Want to know where Chuck Palahniuks tonsils currently reside?
Been looking for a naked mannequin to hide in your kitchen cabinets?
Curious about Chucks debut in an MTV music video?
What goes on at the Scum Center?
How do you get to the Apocalypse Café?
In the closest thing he may ever write to an autobiography, Chuck Palahniuk provides answers to all these questions and more as he takes you through the streets, sewers, and local haunts of Portland, Oregon. According to Katherine Dunn, author of the cult classic Geek Love, Portland is the home of Americas “fugitives and refugees.” Get to know these folks, the “most cracked of the crackpots,” as Palahniuk calls them, and come along with him on an adventure through the parts of Portland you might not otherwise believe actually exist. No other travel guide will give you this kind of access to “a little history, a little legend, and a lot of friendly, sincere, fascinating people who maybe shouldve kept their mouths shut.”
Here are strange personal museums, weird annual events, and ghost stories. Tour the tunnels under downtown Portland. Visit swingers sex clubs, gay and straight. See Frances Gabes famous 1940s Self-Cleaning House. Look into strange local customs like the I-Tit-a-Rod Race and the Santa Rampage. Learn how to talk like a local in a quick vocabulary lesson. Get to know, I mean really get to know, the animals at the Portland zoo.
Oh, the list goes on and on.
"Written as much for first-time visitors as for those who already share Palahniuk's passion for the city....Palahniuk's fondness for his not-so-sleepy hamlet comes through in each gritty detail..." Publishers Weekly
"For Palahniuk, the more acute the angle the better, but his is another solid entry in the Crown Journey series, with its premium on deep-dish subjectivity." Kirkus Reviews
"Fugitives feels like a guide to Portland, but one written by and for a Portland resident....You can't go wrong by picking up a copy yourself, and joining...in the search for the minutia of Palahniuk's Portland." Erik Henriksen, The Portland Mercury
Kicking off with an introduction featuring Katherine Dunn, author of the bestselling classic Geek Love
, and her theory that Portland is highly attractive to America's "fugitives and refugees" or as Palahniuk sums it up, the "most cracked of the crackpots" this journey showcases "a little history, a little legend, and a lot of friendly, sincere, fascinating people who maybe should've kept their mouths shut."
Here are strange personal museums, weird annual events, and ghost stories. Tour the tunnels under downtown Portland, used in the 1800s for shanghaiing sailors and smoking opium. Visit swingers, sex clubs, gay and straight. See Francis Gabe's famous 1940s "Self-Cleaning House." Look into strange local customs like the I-tit-a-rod race and the Santa Rampage Oh, the list goes on and on. Readers will also be treated to some of Palahniuk's most humiliating personal Portland moments, making this a must-read for every one of his loyal fans, as well as anyone looking for cheap thrills in the Pacific Northwest.
About the Author
Chuck Palahniuk is the author of six novels, including the bestsellers Fight Club, Choke, and Lullaby. His latest novel is Diary. For more information, visit www.chuckpalahniuk.net.