Raised in Captivity

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 30 Jul 2019

Member Reviews

It is a collection of short stories.
Stories that are short but are very deep.
You cannot predict where will a particular story go. Till it actually ends.
All stories are excellent and explore different topic in a innovative prose.

A cat with parasite or a job you can't quit or story about ants in home or a cult of suicidal people- stories tread on strange, unexplored and astonishing paths.
Characters in stories are distinct and we'll carved.

If author describes a man in orange west sitting in park and eating fruits and taking to frightened kids, you can visualise the scene.

Internal dialogues of characters are wonderfully depicted and engaging.

Book is highly enjoyable and written in a non boring flow.

When We talk about theme of the book., It is mostly dark. There is pain, conflict, crime, depression and seperation.

But it is a very nice exploration of dark corners of human psyche and human existence.
Highlight of the book is backgrounds and nonconventional settings where stories take place.
I would recommend book to readers looking for a different sort of book.
Thanks netgalley and publisher for review copy.
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In a Where-Murakami-meets-Ogden Nash menagerie, Chuck Klosterman, in his book "Raised In Captivity", whips up a cascade of stories that prima facie, look like an obeisance to absurdity. Bewildering, Puzzling, and irrational, these cryptic tales come careening at the reader, each one more powerful than its immediate predecessor in both velocity and bafflement.  Albert Camus, once said, 'basically, at the very bottom of life, which seduces us all, there is only absurdity, and more absurdity. And maybe that's what gives us our joy for living, because the only thing that can defeat absurdity is lucidity.'


Yet, maybe it is in this very absurdity that Mr. Klosterman eggs us on to find lucidity. Perhaps it is his way of trying to rend asunder our moorings to the stereotypical and obsession with the banal. Mr. Klosterman also succeeds in elevating irony to the pedestal that it deserves, a pinnacle which finds itself relegated to mere nostalgia in our current world. Opaque, convoluted and dense, Mr. Klosterman's collection is more a haphazard and random entwining than an intricate and pattern obeying latticework. A husband and wife duo spend a majority of their lives in an attic, forming part of a Russian Bar. Accessible only via a rope-ladder, the claustrophobic confine is a peculiar haven for a doubly peculiar activity. The couple, employing an algorithm, keep permanently deleting entries forming part of Wikipedia. In another short story, there is a death by stereo. A man is bludgeoned to death by using a sound system as an uncommon weapon. A singularly unique medical procedure permits pregnant women to transfer their natal pain to their spouses/partners. A stunning sight of a lightning, striking a huge whale alters both the perception and life of an accidental witness, who happens to be wandering around in a state of rumination, if not contemplation. A man - in a mind numbing fashion finds himself a confidant of a confirmed sex addict. 

Then there is the puma in the toilet of an aircraft in motion, and a woman who hires a hitman to kill her husband, only to find that her choice is a stickler, not only for perfection, but methodologies too, because of which the proposed time to make the hit is a whopping four years! In story titled "If Something Is Free The Product Is You", the reader gets to read seven and a half pages about a screw driver and nothing else! 

This collection of thirty four asymmetric stories, confuse and confound in equal measure. But they are also in a queer manner, a construct of the times we found ourselves in and potentially existential crises for which we have to brace ourselves if we keep going about things the way in which we are right now.
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Just as depicted on the book cover, Raised in Captivity is a collection of short stories that are weird and filled with dark humour. Some of the stories will have you ROFL and some are plain strange. It's not for everyone's taste, but I really enjoyed reading it.
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I thoroughly 'enjoyed this book as I am a big fan of short story collections. These are a different take on the author's usual style of writing and are more thought out pieces than his his early work. If you are a fan of his books, you will enjoy this collection of his always intelligent witty writing. Apparently his writing is available on podcasts as well, but I have not taken the time to hear those.
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I kept describing this book to people as 'very Chuck Klosterman.' This wasn't a criticism, just that it's written in his voice. I liked this book but felt that it was best read in small chunks so that I could mull over what I had just read before moving on to the next story.
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I included this book in a roundup of recent story collections and essays. In the Toronto Star on Aug. 31, online a few days before

Raised in Captivity, Chuck Klosterman

A passenger in first class finds a puma in the lavatory. He closes the door and returns to his seat. When he shares his startling discovery with his seatmate, the man urges him to speculate on how a puma might find its way into the restroom of a plane, which he does. Or this: Could it be that everything we believe about nutrition is hogwash and that the health-giving value of any food, whether plant or animal, is a function of how long after its death it is consumed? One more: A runner is confronted on his path by a man who tells him he will accompany him 440 years into the future, which the runner declines to do. Those are the premises of three of the 16 stories in Klosterman’s new collection. Reading him is like hanging out with a brilliant stoner.

https://www.thestar.com/entertainment/books/2019/08/28/five-new-books-leave-you-with-something-to-chew-on.html
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This was...different.  Tough to tell what kind of book this is, but Klosterman is such a fun writer that it doesn't really matter.  I'll continue to read from him and my students really enjoy it.
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Weird and fantastical stories that will please even those who are not short-story fans.  I read this over a week and read a story or two before bed each night.  The writing is magnificent but the plots that Kloterman comes up with are just so odd and delightful that I could not put them down.  He may be a genius.  And, about reading these before bedtime - they will give you some truly bizarre dreams.  so fun!
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Another great read from Chuck Klosterman! It perfectly blends his classic dark humor with his social commentary to make a fun collection of short stories that are a little more real than you wish they were.
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Thank you Net Galley and Penguin Group for the e-ARC of this book.

I have to give this book 2.5 stars, rounded up to 3 stars. I found some of the short stories interesting, but I was largely underwhelmed by the stories, the writing, and the book in general. I expected more from this author, but didn't find it.
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The only thing I didn't LOVE about this book was the stories I enjoyed the most were at the beginning.  Overall, a great book.

I've loved Klosterman for years, but didn't like his fiction novel.  I liked his non-fiction work and overall writing style, so went into this book with a little trepidation... The first story was my favorite, and I liked almost everything.

Some stories had clear morals or messages, others were so open ended I had to put the book down and think for awhile before moving on.  Most stories are short, less than ten pages, so it was easy to read a little, think a little, and still work through the book quickly.

**I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
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Wry, amusing, and thoughtful short stories that are very accessible. There's something approachable and comforting about Klosterman's prose, like a letter writing competition with a friend, constantly one-upping each other.
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This is one more road that I found it difficult to follow Klosterman down. He returns to the cultural essay regularly enough to trick me into reading his experiments with fiction, philosophy, and here, short stories. So many of these were more apparently half-baked than succinct and insightful as the best flash fiction can be.
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I guess I one of the few that just didn't want to not finish. It was not as humorous as it tried to be. I did finish but just did not feel it was anything outstanding.
Thank you, NetGalley for the advance copy to review.
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Raised in Captivity is a short story collection (30+ bite sized tales!) by Chuck Klosterman. Billed ludicrously as "fictional nonfiction", these are tales of random people in bizarre situations, from the hilarious (but ultimately dark) story of a football team that only runs one play to a woman vetting multiple assassins to find the best one to kill her husband. 

This collection is my first exposure to Klosterman, so I didn't come in with any preconceived notions. His writing is witty and rooted in timely topics, touching upon things like fascism and attitudinal changes in the current student generations. As with a good majority of short story collections (especially ones with so many stories), some of these fall flat while others are laugh out loud funny. I'd mostly recommend this for people who like a large dose of the surreal in their short fiction. 

**I was given a copy of this book by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. My thanks to Penguin Press.**
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Raised in Captivity by Chuck Klosterman is an eclectic collection of weird and sometimes wonderful short stories. There’s no rhyme or reason to them. It’s like finding a box filled with pages and pages of scripts and trying to piece them together.

I enjoyed a few of them, their premises were intriguing. There were many that I just didn’t get. I re-read a few of them to try and figure out what I missed – and still missed it.

It’s a critique on our (western) culture and what we do with it. Some of it is funny, some of it is horrifying, and some of it is so dumb you cannot help but despair at us humans. 

#netgalley #raisedincaptivity #chuckklosterman
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Reading this book is as if the author invited you to look over a series of literary snapshots he has stored in a box. Some are intriguing, some are darkly humorous, others are perplexing and some you have no idea why he saved them. Some of my favorites are: an unexpected encounter with a puma in a most unlikely place; the impact of a non-traditional football coach on his high school players; a university professor who has somehow lost touch with his students’ concerns; old friends meeting up only to discover that one has truly embraced the counter-culture; and three pitches are made by unlikely candidates for some kind of show/podcast. The best thing about all the stories is the sudden turn of phrase and logic with a dollop of contemporary references. This collection is truly imaginative and a different kind of journey for a short story reader.

Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for the opportunity to read this book
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I've been hearing a lot about this book lately. Some have said it's a work of quirky genius while others describe it as something more akin to mental flatulence (brain farts). I stand firmly in the middle ground but tilt more towards the latter.

There are 34 short stories in this collection, many of them just a few pages long, none over 10 or 12 pages. I found a few of them really interesting and profound. There were also a few that I found to be almost completely incoherent. The majority of the collection was... well, something to read, I guess.

My first instinct with something like this - a title that has received glowing reviews more often than not but didn't have much of an impression on me - is that I just didn't "get it". That I am too old, clueless, uncool, ignorant, or whatever to understand the nuance of what the author was trying to do. While that may indeed be the case here it seemed that many of the stories were simply a combination of incomplete thought experiments or random paragraphs haphazardly dropped in from space or perhaps various alternate realities. They never made any kind of sense to me.

To be fair, I came in thinking that the designation "fictional nonfiction" meant it was a collection of " too strange to be true but too true to be completely fiction" kind of tales one might find in a collection of Florida Man-type stories. Off-the-wall or oddball characters in wacky predicaments. My expectations were for something a little more tongue-in-cheek. Perhaps with some apocalyptic sci-fi or some such. That it wasn't what I had expected is my fault not the author's.

My recommendation for other readers, considering what a mixed bag this collection proved to be, is to check it out at the library rather than purchase it. You'll probably find something to like in a few of the stories but it's doubtful that for the average reader the purchase price will be comparable to the overall reading enjoyment.

***Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for providing me with a free digital copy of this title in exchange for an honest review
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Best I can say about this collection of short stories is that they're - - unique.  Not that they're bad, they're just weird.  Most of them I wouldn't even classify as stories because they end so abruptly before the reader really has a chance to get into them.  I didn't love any of them, didn't really hate any of them.  It's just a bizarre collection.
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This was my first experience with Chuck Klosterman, and, needless to say, it was interesting.  A collection of short stories that ended just about the time they got interesting.  Some were sad, some funny, many were boring.  I found myself picking up the book, reading two or three stories, and putting the book back down to pick up again when I didn’t have anything else to do.  

If you are a fan of Mr. Klosterman and like his style, this is probably a good book for you.  If you, like me, enjoy a book with a message, or action, or a good guy/girl wins, I recommend you pass on this one.

Thank you, NetGalley, for offering me a free advance copy of this novel for my honest review.
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