A Fraction of the Whole

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A Fraction of the Whole is his first novel. Select Parent Grandparent Teacher Kid at heart. Age of the child I gave this to:. Hours of Play:. Tell Us Where You Are:. Preview Your Review.

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Thank you. Your review has been submitted and will appear here shortly. Reviews Rated 1 out of 5 by Littlebee from Oh wow Oh wow You keep reading it because you can't imagine it can get any worse and then it does! I found nothing redeeming about it and yet my friend loved it! Go figure! Date published: Rated 5 out of 5 by Matt from Fabulous!

This book was such an enjoyable read that I don't even know where to begin with a review. It is a multigenerational drama that follows the lives of 2 men in one particular family--a father and son.

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A Fraction of the Whole book. Read reviews from the world's largest community for readers. An irreverent comic adventure, spanning three continents. . A Fraction of the Whole is a novel by Steve Toltz. It follows three generations of the eccentric Dean family in Australia and the people who surround them.

The father is incredibly eccentric and often troubles and, in turn, his son trying to fit into the world around him being raised the product of such an environment. I laughed so so hard and cried while reading this. I have gifted this book to multiple people and I think that almost anyone can find some enjoyment and delight in this great novel.

Rated 5 out of 5 by ravenwood from Fantastic! This book: such an explosion of nonsensical and ridiculous brilliance!

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A fast-paced yarn from beginning to end with a smooth narrative. You'll fall in love with the protagonist and his tragicomical interactions with his father and the rest of the world, and be a little sad when it finally comes to it's glorious end. Rated 4 out of 5 by Jocelyn from Clever sarcastic view of many life situations This book was interesting because of the tone it was written in. I was compelled to finish the story even though I felt like I was being yelled at the whole time. This story of a man and his father seemed like a hateful and frustrating relationship but the very long and convoluted road they took through their life developed an appreciation and love for each other that left me with a surprising feeling of warmth.

Well written and dealing with universal themes, this Australian writes in an easy style that's great to read. Funny characters and hilariously improbable situations kept me interested through to the end. And a few surprises. One of my recent top five favorites.

Rated 5 out of 5 by L. I would love to read anything written by Steve Toltz. A very amusing look at a father-son relationship. Extra Content. Read from the Book You never hear about a sportsman losing his sense of smell in a tragic accident, and for good reason; in order for the universe to teach excruciating lessons that we are unable to apply in later life, the sportsman must lose his legs, the philosopher his mind, the painter his eyes, the musician his ears, the chef his tongue.

My lesson? I have lost my freedom, and found myself in this strange prison, where the trickiest adjustment, other than getting used to not having anything in my pockets and being treated like a dog that pissed in a sacred temple, is the boredom. I can handle the enthusiastic brutality of the guards, the wasted erections, even the suffocating heat.

But what can I do here to kill time? Fall in love? Sleep all day? There are no distractions here—not enough, anyway—to avoid catastrophic introspection. Neither can I beat back the memories with a stick. All that remains is to go insane; easy in a theater where the apocalypse is performed every other week. Last night was a particularly stellar show: I had almost fallen asleep when the building started shaking and a hundred angry voices shouted as one. I stiffened.

A riot, yet another ill—conceived revolution. The floor? There were odd—shaped bulges in his neck; clearly something terrible was taking place underneath his skin. The people here are all in a bad way and their clinging misfortunes have physically misshaped them. Mine have too; my face looks like a withered grape, my body the vine.

I waved the prisoner away and continued listening to the routine chaos of the mob. I sat on my bed and became mesmerized by the glow from burning mattresses illuminating the corridor, only to be interrupted by two grim, unshaven inmates who strode into my cell and stared at me as if I were a mountain view. I said that I was. Both prisoners let out deep, unsettling laughs that sounded like the tearing of denim.

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The taller one pushed me aside and yanked the mattress from my bed while the other stood as if frozen and waiting to thaw. Holding it between them, the prisoners paused at the door.

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Toshikazu Kawaguchi. As I said earlier, this theme is cast on two people with an extreme, quasi-religious belief in nihilism, giving the book a potent flavor that is serious while still being, at most times, comic:. It will know what I know, all my mistakes. It is vivacious, visceral, tortuously tragic and startlingly funny. August 14th, 0 Comments. The existing Open Comments threads will continue to exist for those who do not subscribe to Independent Premium. I think Trevor got the better deal — I set high expectations for this book and ended up being severely disappointed.

Man and his codes! He muttered something in a foreign tongue to his cohort, who laughed as they left. The wasted effort helps me see the positives of imprisonment. Here we have someone visible to blame—someone wearing shiny boots.

Because out there in the real world, freedom means you have to admit authorship, even when your story turns out to be a stinker. Negotiating with memories isn't easy: how to choose between those panting to be told, those still ripening, those already shriveling, and those destined to be mangled by language and come out pulverized? One thing's for sure: not writing about my father would take a mental effort that's beyond me. All my non-Dad thoughts feel like transparent strategies to avoid thinking about him.

And why should I avoid it anyway? My father punished me for existing, and now it's my turn to punish him for existing. It's only fair. But the real difficulty is, I feel dwarfed by our lives.

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They loom disproportionately large. We painted on a broader canvas than we deserved, across three continents, from obscurity to celebrity, from cities to jungles, from rags to designer rags, betrayed by our lovers and our bodies, and humiliated on a national then cosmic scale, with hardly a cuddle to keep us going.

We were lazy people on an adventure, flirting with life but too shy to go all the way. So how to begin to recount our hideous odyssey? Keep it simple, Jasper. Remember, people are satisfied-no, thrilled-by the simplification of complex events.

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And besides, mine's a damn good story and it's true. I don't know why, but that seems to be important to people. Personally, if someone said to me, "I've got this great story to tell you, and every word is an absolute lie! I guess I should just admit it: this will be as much about my father as it is about me.


I hate how no one can tell the story of his life without making a star of his enemy, but that's just the way it is. The fact is, the whole of Australia despises my father perhaps more than any other man, just as they adore his brother, my uncle, perhaps more than any other man. I might as well set the story straight about both of them, though I don't intend to undermine your love for my uncle or reverse your hatred for my father, especially if it's an expansive hatred. I don't want to spoil things if you use your hate to quicken your awareness of who you love.

Harry is hired by Martin to act as a mentor for Terry's fledgling criminal operation. As Harry's sanity deteriorates, Martin becomes his only confidante, and Harry asks him for help in publishing his vision, a textbook for criminals.