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The Brightonomicon
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The Brightonomicon

4.2 4
by Robert Rankin

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Our teenage hero, having been thrown from Brighton Pier by the leader of The Canvey Island Mod Squad, narrowly escapes drowning thanks to the Perfect Master, Cosmic Dick and self-styled Logos of the Aeon (not to mention the reinventer of the Ocarina), Hugo Rune Himself.

Our hero has lost his memory, and, in desperation, agrees to join The Lad Himself in the


Our teenage hero, having been thrown from Brighton Pier by the leader of The Canvey Island Mod Squad, narrowly escapes drowning thanks to the Perfect Master, Cosmic Dick and self-styled Logos of the Aeon (not to mention the reinventer of the Ocarina), Hugo Rune Himself.

Our hero has lost his memory, and, in desperation, agrees to join The Lad Himself in the solving of twelve cases based upon The Brightonomicon, the new zodiac signs formed by the alignment of Brighton streets and discovered by Rune: carriageway constellations.

And together they must find the Chronovision before it falls into the wrong hands and affords ultimate power to the would-be world dictator. And this being an adventure most exciting, they must find it before the sinister Count Otto Black, would-be World Dictator and all-round bad guy. Or the whole world will all go to pot.

Editorial Reviews

Stark raving genius...
Publishers Weekly
A secret zodiac patterned on forgotten Brighton byways is the springboard for the comic misadventures of an occult adept and his apprentice in this screwball fantasy from British author Rankin (The Hollow Chocolate Bunnies of the Apocalypse). The zaniness begins when Count Hugo Rune saves Rizla, a feckless teen, from drowning. Deprived of his memory and identity, Rizla grudgingly partners with the mysterious Rune on a mission to track down the Chronovision, a device that can replay private scenes from the past. The roundabout route to the Chronovision lies through picaresque escapades linked to the 12 astrological signs of the Brightonomicon, which bring the befuddled Rizla into contact with crablike aliens, patrons of a nudist restaurant, and opposing teams of priests and nuns competing in a violent croquet match. The loose plot accommodates an endless parade of oddball characters as well as exchanges of wordplay and giddy banter as likely to put readers in mind of Lewis Carroll as Terry Pratchett. As humorous fantasy goes, this novel is a triumph of gleeful nonsense. (Dec.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
The youthful hero of Rankin's latest fantastic romp takes his girlfriend to Brighton for a weekend, but instead of a romantic outing, he finds himself cast into the water only to be rescued by the enigmatic Dr. Hugo Rune. Suffering from memory loss, the young man agrees to help Dr. Rune solve a series of 12 mysteries patterned on the Brighton Zodiac formed by the patterns of Brighton's streets. His adventures and their final resolution result in a freewheeling tale that combines the best of British comic writing with a panoramic approach to storytelling. Libraries should purchase where there is a demand for comic fantasy or where the author has a following. Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Rankin, a bestseller in England, returns to lunacy with the eighth in his ever-growing Brentford "trilogy."As usual, the plot is an ADD-afflicted pastiche of "Illuminati"-style conspiratorial maunderings, sub-Douglas Adams absurdities and self-conscious wisecracks. The narrator is a teenager who had taken a trip to Brighton "hoping for a weekend of sexual adventure in a town that is noted for that sort of thing" but ending up dead, only to come to in the company of one Hugo Rune, an ancient and baffling raconteur with a Sherlock Holmes fetish who's looking for an acolyte to record his adventures. Rune explains that he has to solve 12 problems in the next year, one per month, and if he fails, doom will befall Mankind (Rankin wouldn't have it any other way). It also turns out that the streets of Brighton hide 12 ancient constellations that figure into these tasks. Thus, many ancient conspiracies are unearthed, causing the protagonists to face (and even suffer) death on multiple occasions. Highlights in this installment include a bartender who will only speak in rhyme, crab-suited aliens and the return of the dread Mouselcomb Pirates, who haven't had a good pillage since the early 1950s. The result is somewhat wearying over the long haul, but surprisingly funny through some stretches. A decent introduction to an author who never saw a pun he didn't like, and a definite improvement over The Witches of Chiswick (2004).
From the Publisher
'Stark raving genius'—OBSERVER

'We read him for his exuberant salmagundi of old jokes, myths, urban and otherwise, catchphrases, liberatingly crazy ideas, running gags, recurring characters and locations, unreliable autobiographical anecdotes, and not forgetting the now legendary "load of old toot" . . . he becomes funnier the more you read him'—INDEPENDENT

'To call Rankin irreverent doesn't begin to describe just how very good he is at playing with the rules'—DAILY MIRROR

Product Details

Gollancz, Victor Limited
Publication date:
Brentford Trilogy
Product dimensions:
4.30(w) x 6.80(h) x 1.03(d)

What People are Saying About This

Terry Pratchett
One of the rare guys who can always make me laugh.

Meet the Author

Robert Rankin is an unrepentant Luddite who writes his bestselling novels by hand in exercise books. He is the author of THE HOLLOW CHOCOLATE BUNNIES OF THE APOCALYPSE, THE WITCHES OF CHISWICK, THE BRENTFORD TRILOGY (5 books), THE ARMAGEDDON QUARTET (3 books) and many more. He lives with his wife in Brighton.

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The Brightonomicon 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Ericband More than 1 year ago
Rankin's style is unique and if you don't like rapid-fire, dry British humor, this will most likely not appeal to you. But if you do like it, there's plenty to like in The Brightonomicon. An odd zodiac traced on the streets of Brighton, an even odder set of characters to wrap your head around, Benedictine monks that play crocquet in a stadium full of crazed fans, the Chronovision (a device that, in the wrong hands, will destroy the universe), the evilest of evil villains in Count Otto Black, and the hero, the Hokus Bloke himself, Hugo Rune. All told through the eyes and ears of a 16 year old who can't remember who he is. Entertaining stuff, start to finish. Well worth the read. Its the precursor to The Necromancer, in case you've read that one. If you haven't read that one, read this one first.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
I truly admire Mr. Rankin's works, but this one was really a chore to finish! You'd be better off with some of his better efforts. I'd recommend Nostradamus Ate My Hamster, Armageddon the Musical, or The Sprouts of Wrath.