"Ben Peek is a writer I fully expect to blunder out into the scene like a run-away brontosaurus one of these days. He has titanic talent generally leashed to micro-detail projects when his true canvas is probably something much wider and deeper. Twenty-Six Lies/One Truth is a gently experimental text that uses a glossary of terms from A to Z to create vignettes, one-liners, and other supports for loosely connected narratives. Some are funny, some are most definitely not funny. All are lively and deserve your attention."
"I emerged from the book feeling somewhat dazed and exhausted (having read it from beginning to end within a 24 hour period), and I’m not entirely sure what I feel about it. Impressed, certainly. Curious, definitely. A little pissed off... well, maybe."
"What I got from it is this: that truth matters when it matters, and doesn’t when it doesn’t. And that each of us must find our own path as to where that distinction lies. 26 Lies, 1 Truth is an intelligent, playful, funny, challenging, thoughtful and deeply moving work. It is a book filled with outrageous lies. And it is a book filled with truth."
"It ought to fail miserably. But, curse his eyes, Mr Peek has written a fantastic book. And despite its structure, Twenty-Six Lies has a powerful narrative drive. Mr Peek as deftly woven a story into his encyclopedia, complete with character development, unfolding themes, and a hard shock of an ending."
"Ben Peek's Twenty-Six Lies/One Truth is a memoir in the form of alphabetical entries, ten or so entries for each letter. The book is also semiotic, social commentary, a meditation on the truth-telling responsibilities of a writer, a part-time comic book, funny as hell, profane, and melancholy. Like the best memoirs it's deeply personal yet engaging and universal. Peek lays out the truths and lies and is smart enough to trust the reader to fit everything together. Powerful stuff. Highly recommended."
"This is a clever, moving, funny and insightful book. I laughed, and I would have cried, but I'm too fucking hard for that sort of shit. See, I understand, relate and empathise with a lot of the truth in this book, the truths I know are true."
"This book is an autobiography. At least some of it is true, for whatever value you like for 'true.' It tells me (or you, or whoever the reader) over and over again not to trust writers. Writers lie. Words, by their very nature, lie.
I know better than to trust this book. I know not to let it seep into my mind, not to take too much too heart what I think it tells me about Ben Peek.
The only trouble is, I don't know how."
"I find myself unable to call it a brilliant book, although there are certainly brilliant bits, and I am instead left to describe it as an interesting book, which is certainly is - through and through."
"Ben Peek’s Twenty-Six Lies/One Truth is inebriating, an absinthe of self-deception, a smoke-filled room of conflicted emotion, a hall of mirrors, each of them distorting both perception and reality. Ben Peek dances on the stepping stones of Ben Peek’s supposed life, leaping from philosophy to pop culture, from insight to angst. As one reads this remarkable work, the question arises, “what is the line between the art and the artist”? Peek knows. I know. But you cannot know, for certain, until you pick out the lies. Do you trust your judgement that much? Do you trust Ben Peek? What makes you so certain that you can crack the code of Twenty-Six Lies/One Truth? I’d be careful if I were you. Deception awaits."
There are more reviews if you hit the tag at the bottom of this post.
You can buy 26lies at Wheatland Press, or at Amazon, or at some meat world store. There is also a sample of it at the Wheatland Press, so you can try before you buy, because obviously you're going to do the last, yes?
Well, yes, but it's been a while since one of these, and there are people out there who haven't bought it. You don't want to be left behind, do you? When it's a cult classic and all the cool kids are talking about it, you want to be right there, saying to people, "And then he died, penniless and alone--that's why I became an investment banker." Also, the book has a really cool cover.