Momus (a Scotsman born Nick Currie) has a reputation as music's darkest singer-songwriter, but his novel takes dark to another level. In The Book of Jokes, all jokes -- obscene, cruel, etc. -- actually happen, and they happen to one poor family. The beleaguered narrator, escaping his sexually predatory father, ends up on a picaresque accompanied by the Murderer and the Molester. This book is not for everyone, and it's not even funny. But you've never read anything like it, and you might find yourself wondering at some of the jokes you've laughed at yourself.

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