Simon Rich - Elliot Allagash (4 stars)

Simon Rich - Elliot Allagash

(Serpent’s Tail)

As the debut novel from Saturday Night Live’s youngest ever writer, Elliot Allagash fulfils expectations. A hilariously satiric novel peppered with innovative anecdotes, the narrative may be simple but the comedy is fast-paced and enthralling. The basis for the book is the typical and much overdone teenage transformation story; in this case, the eponymous Elliot Allagash decides to turn the ‘loser’ of the class into the most popular guy in high school.

The main plot structure may be pretty predictable but that’s the point; what’s new about Simon Rich’s novel is the original way in which he parodies the classic story, allowing the reader to focus on the laugh-out-loud irony portrayed through the central characters. While many find it difficult to translate their comedy from the stage to the page, Simon Rich demonstrates that not only is he capable of doing so, he’s good at it too.

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