Hell is for children

“Death is a long process. Your body is just the first part of you that cracks.” These are the predictive words of Madison Spencer, the 13-year-old daughter of an aging movie star and a billionaire. She dies at this formative age from what she supposes to be a marijuana overdose, but actually involves unopened Hello Kitty condoms and a game she learned at boarding school. Chuck Palahniuk’s newest novel, Damned, places her spirit in a hell that, though anything but classic, remains plenty disturbing. She quickly takes control of the situation and embarks on a journey through hell to confront Satan, along with a group of young people reminiscent of the cast of The Breakfast Club. Palahniuk’s narration, while not likely to come from a 13-year-old girl in reality, is witty, concise and sharp. Prepare for a pleasant form of literary whiplash as you read.