The Punk Ethic – Timothy Decker

“April 2
My alarm clock went off at 7:00 I stared at it. ‘April is the cruelest month,’ what horrible crap. Boring ass Monday is the cruelest days, that’s more accurate. Despite being completely exhausted, I started cramming stuff into my gig bag by order of importance.”
Back to music, what are songs anyway? They’re crappy little stories. And there are two kinds: the whiny confession. Which suck. And the fictional story. Which suck. All this strumming and singing is a waste. I’m tired of wasting time. I don’t want to tell anybody anything about me. That’s stupid. I don’t want to invent some story. I don’t want to be entertaining. That’s stupid.
I have to do something. Wake up, Martin. Go start something. Go!
If you want to rock, you come out swinging. Well, Martin Henry just made a fist.
Challenged by a teacher to actually “do” something, Martin walks a minefield of idiot friends, an unfathomable Dream Girl, high school, and relative pennilessness to prove that he can change the world.
The funny thing about change, it screws up everything.
Whatever… (taken from Amazon)

***
I picked this one up ages ago on NetGalley. It sounded quite interesting and I thought it would be a great quick read for my train journey down to London a few weeks ago. Needless to say in the hour there and three hours back I got it finished easily as its only 200 pages long and had time to think about it and what it meant… honestly, I wish I hadn’t bothered. 
The writing of the book is pretty good, its average, its not going to blow you away but its readable and I enjoyed the voice. Its a little mismatched with random inclusions of Martin’s essays dotted here and there but that kinda works and I enjoyed that. Its written in short snappy sentences and paragraphs which is exactly how I’d expect a 17 year old boy to think if it was written down (maybe not in fully formed sentences but you know what I mean).
Each new day begins a new chapter and the whole book is set in April. With each new chapter there are illustrations and those are what I enjoyed about the book the most. They were really well drawn and I really like the art style, but they would have worked better on a hard copy than on the kindle copy. I liked waht they added to the story and how they followed Martin in his day to day life. 
I wish I could tell you about the characters but in all honesty I don;t know anything about them. Not much anyway, I know Martin is obsessed with music and Jeff is a bit of a prick but is Martin’s best mate. I know Holly was a nice punk rock kinda girl but had some serious issues but even those weren’t very clear and I know that Mr Sanden asked for the most random English essays I’ve ever seen. That’s about it.
The story isn’t much either, Martin writes about Landmies for one of his English papers and is spurred on to do something about them and the kids in poor countries who are blown up by them. So he stages a benefit gig at the end of April. I think the story was about that… but it was so vague and bland that I didn’t really pick anything up about it. It happens and goes ok but thats the end of it. I don’t know, I guess it might be trying to put across that to change the world you have to work a little bit at a time but it was just all lost on me and I didn’t really like it. 
The Punk Ethic was just a book about following Martin around for a month while he sets up this gig. There was no passion and very little effort to be honest. I didn’t like it and I probably wont be looking into much more by the author if this book is anything to go by. 
The trailer, just in case you wanted to see it! 
The Punk Ethic was published in May 2012 by Namelos in the US but can be purchased from Amazon. My copy was obtained through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. 


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  • I don’t think I’ll be picking this up. Sorry you didn’t enjoy it 🙁 I don’t really like the sound of the synopsis either! Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Raimy. 🙂