The Nihilist's Pocket Survival Guide to Modern Society - Book Review

The Nihilist's Pocket Survival Guide to Modern Society

Author: Tungyn Cheque
Genre: Fiction - Humor
Publisher: Vox Veritas Vita Press
Date Published: March 18, 2024
ISBN-10: N/A
ISBN-13: 979-8-218-31900-7

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Book Review of :  The Nihilist's Pocket Survival Guide to Modern Society


Nihilist's Pocket Survival Guide to Modern Society, penned by an anonymous writer known by the pseudonym Tungyn Cheque. This intriguing book delves into the art of embracing nihilism and navigating the waters of a conformist society saturated with meaningless rhetoric and conformity. What is a Nihilist? An individual who challenges accepted aspects of human existence like knowledge, morality, and meaning. Coined by Ivan Turgenev, it suggests values are baseless, and knowledge and communication are unattainable. Linked with deep pessimism and extreme skepticism, a genuine nihilist rejects all beliefs, has no allegiances, and seeks disruption above all else.

Our protagonist, Rectum Leviticus (R.L.), is a deeply inquisitive character who, throughout the book, is constantly delving into various ideas and exploring the world around him. In one chapter, R.L. expresses his fondness for Geckos, particularly his pet Gecko named Mephisto, known for its appetite for cockroaches. This love for Geckos leads the author to draw connections to Kafka in a discussion. Furthermore, the narrative transitions smoothly to a contemplation of the satisfying sound of Velcro being pulled apart. Imagining a future scenario, the text playfully speculates on the potential comfort of the sound when R.L. might one day be elderly and dealing with Alzheimer's, opening and closing his adult diapers.

I found the book to touch on many topics I'm interested in. R. L.'s observations resonated with me, reflecting similar perspectives. An example of the author's narrative style can be seen in the following passage. It provides an acerbic description of his observations of the subway experience and delves into the personal significance he draws from them.
 "Turning the table against the populace who staunchly believed that riding the subway was beneath them -it was actually underground - R. L. kind of felt a little sorry for people who chose not to avail themselves of the riches they failed to see. He shrugged. C'est la vie. He enjoyed the show in contradistinction to those unenlightened, disdainful masses who refused to take public transportation. Now, being an astute observer of human behavior, R. L. did not overlook the litter, the drunks, the purse snatchers, the panhandlers, the gangs, the hookers, and the boom-box-carrying fellow passengers who obnoxiously insisted on blasting hip hop and loud bass with often uninspired lyrics. He saw them, and, of course, he heard them. It all represented drama on the stage, a panoply of sights and sounds. He especially liked graffiti –which inspired urban art and screaming social messaging. Who needs YouTube when you have NYC public transportation?"

His observations often delve into the profound sense of emptiness that permeates the lives of many, highlighting the weary expressions of commuters aboard the subway. Their existence seems to languish in unfulfilling jobs and shattered aspirations. Amidst this, R. L. finds solace in the company of anarchists and activists, including the enigmatic figure known as Ant Man, who harbors a desire for a symbolic end to his life. In a surprising turn of events, R. L. is entrusted with overseeing the office in a subsequent chapter, where he adopts a laissez-faire management approach, empowering his team to pursue their own paths. The newfound freedom surprisingly enhances productivity, contrasting the previous rigid directives.

The book is truly a masterpiece that delves deep into the reader's thoughts, prompting introspection and raising questions about various facets of life. Through its humorous narrative style, it offers a continuous flow of consciousness that explores a multitude of life subjects. I found the book captivating - from its astute observations to the clever employment of sarcasm and ridicule that shed light on the shortcomings of our world. It presents a humorous yet insightful perspective on the nonsensical aspects perpetuated in our society.

Tungyn Cheque's work is humorously irreverent, explicit, and unapologetically skewers contemporary American culture. His satire, akin to the legendary Robert Crumb, cleverly unveils societal truths with a sharp, acerbic wit, leaving a lasting impact on those who engage with his writings. The boldness of his commentary is a captivating reflection of the world around us.

Reviewed by: David J

About Tungyn Cheque


Tungyn Cheque prefers to remain anonymous. Know that he is always on the lookout for the absurd and farcical everyday situations that other people miss. He appreciates that humor is all around us, and that modern society provides an abundance of things to not take so seriously. He has learned to watch, smile, be fascinated by, and contemplate new survival tactics. Mr. Cheque is a distinguished graduate of Fl�neur University, and matriculated with honors from The Royal Academy of Studious Humans. He is enrolled in continuing education at the Institute for the Advancement of Nonsense. Tungyn Cheque is a member of the American Society of Subversives and the League of Laughter.


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