Borrow
Buy

Cockroach

by Rawi Hage

Cockroach takes the reader on a surrealist and nightmarish journey through the Montreal underworld. A small time crook in exile from his homeland attempts suicide and is forced into therapy. Surviving by leaching off others, he is plagued by hallucinations that he is half cockroach. This will appeal to those who like existentialist prose filled with startling imagery and rich metaphor exploring the darker side of human life.



Extract

I opened my eyes in the dark and looked at the ceiling. I amused myself by imagining that I was colouring the flat obscure roof above me with school pencils, making clouds and bright suns. All that is empty in the drawing should be filled in, the teacher said to us kids. First you sharpen the pencil to fill in the thin whiskers, then you use the thick crayon to fill in the wings with brown, meticulously and without letting the crayon leave the page. Six feet can be traced below the soft belly. Now breathing is hard to detect on paper, the teacher said to me when I asked, but it is easier to feel it in real life. Even insects breathe. So I stretched my fingers from underneath the sheets and laid them on Shohreh's chest. Her half coloured wings turned and fluttered and she quickly slipped to the other side of the bed. So instead I looked for the thickest pen available, held it, and jerked it until it burst and spilled on my lap, and my teacher came and slapped my hands and sent me to the dark corner of the room.

Parallels

Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka
Notes from the Underground by Fyodor Dostoevsky
 

Read Extract

Books with similar rating

Borrow

1. Select UK region:

Not in the UK?

Scotland Norther Ireland North East of England North West of England Yorkshire and the Humber Wales West Midlands East Midlands East of England London South West of England South East of England

Sign in

 
Email:
 
Password:

Whichbook Sign Up

Enter your email address to get started:

First name:
Last name:
Password:
Confirm password:

Alerts

Email alerts are only available for registered users.