Using a range of approaches from bitter realism to demented fantasy, Irvine Welsh is able to evoke the essential humanity, well hidden as it is, of his generally depraved, lazy, manipulative and vicious characters. He specializes especially in cosmic reversals--God turns a hapless footballer into a fly--always displaying a corrosive wit.
I read the 1st two stories in this book and found them so dark and disturbing I had to put the book down. I didn't finish it.I do read various thrillers and many authors but would not recommend this to anyone.
This was my first exploration into this author and I was not impressed. I only liked one story out of the whole bunch and it had nothing to do with graphic nature or subject matter anymore than just plain boring writing. I have often been told I should read books by Irvine Welsh and I thought the short stories would be a good beginning. However, most of these stories seemed to hide the fact that they were relatively mundane behind dialect. Also it seems the only way the author expresses his creativity is through drug use with the lone exception of The Two Philosophers, a story which I found to be really quite good. Since I am not reviewing just one short story but the lot of them I must say I will give this author one more chance in his more popular works with the hope I find better results.
A bit like Haunted like Chuck Palahnuik, a collection of shock-fiction short stories but in a type of scots-english dialect that takes some getting used to. Pretty good read nonetheless, though some stories are better than others.
Irvine Welsh has been a favorite author of mine since I was a teenager and I'm familiar with most of his work, so I may be a bit biased! The Acid House was a great step outside of the "Trainspotting Universe" to see what else Welsh has to offer. The stories range from intensely dark (Snuff) to uncomfortably funny (Granny's Old Junk). If you're not going in looking for the usual Mark Renton fix, this won't be for you, but The Acid House is definitely a highlight in Welsh's career. (Stay away from the movie though. Far, far, far away....)