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Aardvarks After Dark by Michael Gould


As the future writer of the great (albeit not actually written yet) New Zealand novel, Aardvarks After Dark may well be the book I have been waiting for. This book, by Wellington author Michael Gould, takes a satirical look at book titles, and will appeal to those of you who enjoy a bit of fun word play – or those who really, really need a title for your next work of literature.


A self-diagnosed sufferer of ‘titleitus’ (a syndrome in which its sufferers feel compelled to give everything a title), Gould has compiled a fantastical list of potential book titles, useful for those running short of one, and, let’s face it, who isn’t? I have often stared in to space, imagining the title of the novel that will no doubt win me the Booker Prize and catapult me into the same literary hemisphere as Eleanor and Hilary. Well, Gould says in his introduction that this “self-help manual” is not just for those wishing to try out a title for their book, but also for those who are looking for a way to sum up their lives, or a moment in time.


The titles cover the gamut of literature, from murder mystery through to erotica and fairytales, although you probably wouldn’t want to get those confused. Some of my personal favorites came from the Horror section: ‘As an Exorcist I Insist’, ‘Gore in all its Glory’ or for those moments when you are annoyed with someone… ‘I poured gravy on your grave’.


For those planning on writing a potential family memoir, who could resist ‘Seduction by Liposuction’, ‘Nanny’s Fantastic Plastic Panties’ or ‘My Aunt, the Dilettante’. For us creative types going through a difficult patch comfort may be found in ‘A Litany of Literary Inanity’, ‘The Rosy Nose of a Wino’, ‘Bemused by my Muse’ or ‘The Rhymes of a Slime Bag’.


This is not a book for those of a sensitive persuasion. Instead, it is best enjoyed with tongue firmly in cheek…and with pen handy, just in case that perfect inspiration of a title presents itself.


A Yell from Hell anyone?


REVIEWER: Emma Codd

TITLE: Aardvarks After Dark

AUTHOR(S): Michael Gould

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