The Wasp Factory

The Wasp Factory

A Novel

Book - 1998
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The polarizing literary debut by Scottish author Ian Banks, The Wasp Factory is the bizarre, imaginative, disturbing, and darkly comic look into the mind of a child psychopath.

Meet Frank Cauldhame. Just sixteen, and unconventional to say the least:

Two years after I killed Blyth I murdered my young brother Paul, for quite different and more fundamental reasons than I'd disposed of Blyth, and then a year after that I did for my young cousin Esmerelda, more or less on a whim.

That's my score to date. Three. I haven't killed anybody for years, and don't intend to ever again.

It was just a stage I was going through.
Publisher: New York, NY : Scribner Paperback Fiction, 1998.
Edition: 1st Scribner Paperback Fiction ed. 1998.
ISBN: 9780684853154
Branch Call Number: F Bank
Characteristics: 184 p. ; 21 cm.


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Jan 12, 2018

It was really dark, which I expected but somehow I missed the 'horror' warnings on it. There were parts that made me feel quite disturbed. It is a gripping and brilliant book - the way Banks writes he makes you feel so complicit with his twisted characters. But definite *warning* that it's not for the faint-hearted.

Dec 22, 2015

Ian Banks first and considered one of the top 100 Novels of all time... Intense, insane. Difficult read at times, thought provoking.

Sep 28, 2015

Disturbing in a grotesque sense. Brings to focus mental illness in various degrees as displayed by the major characters of the story. A short, but heavy read.

Jul 12, 2014

Wow! This book will not be for everyone, topic-wise.
It reminds me of 'The Lord of the Flies', though far better..
I felt sorry for Frank, especially at the end of the book and
the plot twist at the end was completely out of the blue.
A fast read as well.

drone154 May 05, 2013

brutal and sly, a classic debut

Jan 08, 2012

Wow, this was an interesting read. I can understand the controversy when it was first released back in 1984. It certainly pushes the reader's limits, making you question where the line should be between sanity and insanity. I think the book is definitely à propos in this day in age as mental illness becomes much more talked about. I would say that there is much more than you everyday mental illness that plagues this family, they lean towards criminally insane. From the cousin who has lost his leg and a friend to a game of chicken, to the brother who burns dogs, to the father who has carried out a heinous experiment on his daughter, to Frank himself as a child who has killed three other children in his extended family. The way all of this is revealed keeps the reader's attention, and it all comes to a climactic head, but then the book fizzles out. You don't know what is going to happen to any of them, especially Frank now that he has discovered the truth about himself. I'll have to test out another of Banks' books to get a better understanding of this writer.


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Jan 12, 2018

daisylourobson thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over

Jul 09, 2016

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Feb 11, 2016

NICOLE MLYNARCZYK thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over


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