Michael O’Dell is hit by a car. When he doesn’t die, he is surprised and pleased. But he can’t seem to move from the crash position. He can’t concentrate, or control his anger and grief, or work out what to do about anything much. His wife Wendy is heroically supportive but his teenage children don’t help his post-accident angst: daughter Rosie punches out a vindictive schoolmate and all hell breaks loose; son Declan is found with a stash of illicit drugs. A strange policeman starts harrassing the family and ordinary mishaps take on a sinister desperation. To top it all off, Michael’s professional life starts to crumble.
With this funny, compelling novel about love, family and the precarious business of being a man, Mark Lamprell’s extraordinary debut examines the terrible truth: sometimes you can’t pull yourself together until you’ve completely fallen apart.
‘Gorgeous and heartfelt…The Full Ridiculous is a portrait of individual crisis and family dysfunctionality. But although Michael’s family is on the edge, their collective situation never degenerates into the brutally satirical world of, say, the Joy family in Peter Carey’s Bliss. Although the story hovers on the cusp of seriously dark territory, Lamprell chooses a gentler path, one closer to Graeme Simsion’s highly successful recent comic novel, The Rosie Project. Ultimately, The Full Ridiculous is a story about a family’s love and durability.’
‘The Full Ridiculous will appeal to readers of quirky, contemporary fiction such as The Rosie Project and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. It reminds us that sometimes, to really appreciate the beautiful highs of life, you need to hit rock bottom first.’
‘This is a funny, thought-provoking and ultimately inspiring tale that will have the reader thinking about Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, adoption, self-worth, suicide, peer pressure, unconditional love, self-delusion and hospital ceilings. An outstanding debut novel.’
‘Mark Lamprell’s debut novel, The Full Ridiculous is laugh-out-loud funny from page one. Pacey, wry and observant, this is a novel set to tickle a fair few funny-bones.’
‘A fast-paced and witty take on the highs and lows of modern family life.’
‘Lamprell’s novel shows a deft touch. His writing is serious and wise, but is underpinned by a great sense of humour…This is a short breezy novel, easy to read…I love it.’
‘A stunning debut.’
‘A very funny and truthful novel.’
‘This is a delightful book, that I found virtually impossible to put down. The vast majority of it was consumed in one sitting. It is tightly crafted, tautly honed and touchingly haunting. At the end, it leaves you hoping for a little bit more. Except that, really, it has provided you with just enough.’