Rock Manning Goes for Broke
Vikings vs. Steampunks! Ice cream sundae hearse disasters! Roman gladiators meet vacuum-cleaner salesmen! Inappropriate uses of exercise equipment and supermarket trolleys! Unsupervised fires, and reckless destruction of public property! Nothing is off limits.Rock Manning lives and breathes slapstick comedy, and his whole life is an elaborate tribute to the masters, like Buster Keaton, Harold Lloyd and Jackie Chan. With his best friend, Sally Hamster, he creates joyfully chaotic short movies that are full of mayhem and silliness.But Rock and Sally are becoming famous at a time of unrest, when America's economy has collapsed and people are taking refuge in highly addictive drugs. America's youth are being drafted to take part in endless wars against imaginary enemies overseas, while at home, a fascist militia known as the Red Bandanas is rising to power. As America becomes more mired in violence and destruction, Rock Manning's zany comedy films become the escapist fun that everybody needs.Over-the-top physical comedy and real-life brutality collide, as Rock and Sally find themselves unable to avoid getting sucked into the slow implosion of their country. The Red Bandanas want Rock Manning to star in propaganda films promoting their movement, and soon Rock and Sally are at the center of the struggle for the soul of America. The trauma and death that Rock witnesses begin to take a toll on him.When a botched weapon test plunges the world into deeper chaos, Rock and Sally must confront once and for all the outer limits of comedy.

Rock Manning Goes for Broke Details

TitleRock Manning Goes for Broke
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseSep 30th, 2018
PublisherSubterranean Press
ISBN-139781596068780
Rating
GenreSequential Art, Graphic Novels, Novella, Science Fiction Fantasy, Fantasy, Science Fiction

Rock Manning Goes for Broke Review

  • Crowinator
    January 1, 1970
    This is the first time I had to manually enter a book on GR!It's going to take me a while to unpack this gonza, hyper-weird, tragicomedy, but I look forward to using the word "gonzo" more. I mean, it's a word I never get to use.
  • unknown
    January 1, 1970
    I would not survive five minutes of one of Charlie Jane Anders' mundane apocalypses (see also: the latter half of All the Birds in the Sky), which is disheartening, because they are so goddam plausible.
  • Kend
    January 1, 1970
    Rock Manning Goes for Broke is a rare example of the modern-day fable done right, all heart and nuanced back-and-forth between modern tastes; this is, after all, a dystopia with a sharp surrealist turn, layered with complex relationships between sympathetic, accessible characters. In the compressed span of 128 pages, this novella holds no punches, takes every risk, and spools out every thread of feeling its readers thought they'd lost in those not-nearly-so-carefree-as-everyone-says years when y Rock Manning Goes for Broke is a rare example of the modern-day fable done right, all heart and nuanced back-and-forth between modern tastes; this is, after all, a dystopia with a sharp surrealist turn, layered with complex relationships between sympathetic, accessible characters. In the compressed span of 128 pages, this novella holds no punches, takes every risk, and spools out every thread of feeling its readers thought they'd lost in those not-nearly-so-carefree-as-everyone-says years when youth reaches into adulthood and gets its wrist slapped. There is a sweetness here that's not remotely cloying, side-by-side with harsh realities and a sense of impending doom—the kind of doom which can only be held off by memes and viral videos for so long, and which steals all the air from the room, leeches the blood from the bodies of friends and not-quite-friends, and slams the lid down on the human urge to make art in the face of apocalypse.This isn't slapstick fun, no matter what other reviews say. This is an earnest grappling with the intractable forces which govern our lives, skinned over with whimsical, surrealist dark comedy. Anders asks: What to do in the face of the cruel inevitabilities of war and chaos? Make art. Make the best, wildest, weirdest art you can. It may not tame the world's untamableness, but it may just transform the artist—and reader.
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  • Chessa
    January 1, 1970
    Frenetic, kind of random, and yet still very very Charlie Jane Anders. Less heart than All the Birds in the Sky though. I am glad this was a novella, because I don’t know if I would have had the patience for a novel-length story of Rock. But as a bite-sized experience, it was wacky and entertaining and maybe a little too scary given our current political climate.
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  • Kathryn Kania
    January 1, 1970
    Tragic, amazing, I loved this
  • Lianne
    January 1, 1970
    This book needs one of the over-the-top "IN A WORLD..." trailers. To say this was a wild ride from start to finish doesn't quite do this novella justice. It's absurd and hilarious, making me literally laugh out loud in what has to be my highest LOL-to-page ratio ever. (More than just a little "pah-huh!" exhalation each time, but actual "HA!"s or chuckles and the like.) But even while the world is falling down around second-generation stunt-man Rock Manning and his slapstick viral video-making fr This book needs one of the over-the-top "IN A WORLD..." trailers. To say this was a wild ride from start to finish doesn't quite do this novella justice. It's absurd and hilarious, making me literally laugh out loud in what has to be my highest LOL-to-page ratio ever. (More than just a little "pah-huh!" exhalation each time, but actual "HA!"s or chuckles and the like.) But even while the world is falling down around second-generation stunt-man Rock Manning and his slapstick viral video-making friend Sally as they survive high school, college, and the collapse of the government, what makes this story work is the underlying heart that is central to all of Anders' work. While the actions these characters take are always wild and surprising, they're never random or without motivation. They follow their own logic, even if it's a logic that I would never be able to predict or replicate. It's hard to pull out evidence from the book to back up these claims, but I don't want to spoil the surprises and rob anyone of the delight I felt when reading this. But here's this quote, one of my favorite moments, because it seems to encapsulate all of my favorite things about this narrator and this novella. Rock is talking about Sally's refusal to incorporate a love story into their latest film, even when her boyfriend is acting in it too:"She was just dead set against goo-goo eyes. I always tried to remind her about that old saying, that a woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle, because what could be more romantic than a school of fish, perched on bikes at the bottom of the ocean, pedaling like wild with all their fins?" The whole thing is just so damn good, just like everything else I've read by Anders. It's hilarious and heartbreaking, laugh and cry on the same page, slapstick and so so serious. 10/10 would ride again. (Thanks so much to Subterranean Press and Netgally for the advance copy!)
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  • John
    January 1, 1970
    This book didn't capture me right off the bat. It seemed a bit scattered and insubstantial at first - weird for the sake of being weird. But there's a level of bizarre and disturbing that grows in the background as you read and it becomes compelling. It's also pretty funny and wonderfully kinetic.Oddly, this book reminds me of reading histories of tumultuous times. History tells the big picture stories but it can't really tell you what it must have been like for regular folk living through dange This book didn't capture me right off the bat. It seemed a bit scattered and insubstantial at first - weird for the sake of being weird. But there's a level of bizarre and disturbing that grows in the background as you read and it becomes compelling. It's also pretty funny and wonderfully kinetic.Oddly, this book reminds me of reading histories of tumultuous times. History tells the big picture stories but it can't really tell you what it must have been like for regular folk living through dangerous times: how people went about their day-to-day in the midst of everything. Rock Manning Goes for Broke accomplishes what history can't - it lets me feel what it's like to be a regular person living through big, dangerous events.
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  • Jen
    January 1, 1970
    Full disclosure: I received an ARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.This is a frenetic, mind-meltingly weird book, and Charlie Jane Anders pulls it off so well. She takes this incredibly dark imagined American future of economic collapse, fascism, and war, and sets it in the background of a manic stuntman's life story as he makes crazy YouTube videos tries to figure out what to do with his life. The comedy and strange optimism of Rock's life makes th Full disclosure: I received an ARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.This is a frenetic, mind-meltingly weird book, and Charlie Jane Anders pulls it off so well. She takes this incredibly dark imagined American future of economic collapse, fascism, and war, and sets it in the background of a manic stuntman's life story as he makes crazy YouTube videos tries to figure out what to do with his life. The comedy and strange optimism of Rock's life makes this a fun read, even as the details of Rock's world are shocking.
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  • Michael Frasca
    January 1, 1970
    This is the way the world ends, not with a bang or a whimper, but a pratfall.Would make a great movie if they could get Charlie Chaplin to direct, with Harold Lloyd starring as Rock Manning.Pairs well with the book John Dies at the End and the movie Safety Last!
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  • Galen Strickland
    January 1, 1970
    Thanks to Net Galley for the advance e-book.I loved this. Kinetic, frenetic, a true roller coaster ride, full of pain and heartache, but also a weird sense of humor. Highly recommended.Full review at http://templetongate.net/rockmanning
  • Jennifer Hudak
    January 1, 1970
    The only thing that would make this book better is hearing Charlie Jane Anders read it in her own voice.
  • Brian
    January 1, 1970
    This book is a blending of three short stories into a cohesive novella. It started off see for me but by the end of the first story I was hooked. The plot followed an internet sensation and his partners in filmmaking and oppressive politics and the start of a dystopia. The book both funny and sad. Highly recommend!
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