The Strange Fascinations of Noah Hipnotik Review

The Strange Fascinations of Noah Hipnotik – Published 2018

“This is Noah Oakman → sixteen, Bowie believer, concise historian, disillusioned swimmer, son, brother, friend.

Then Noah → gets hypnotized.

Now Noah → sees changes—inexplicable scars, odd behaviors, rewritten histories—in all those around him. All except his Strange Fascinations . . .” – Goodreads


OMG this is such a good book. David Arnold’s writing is If you haven’t read Mosquitoland by him, you’re missing out on that, too. His writing is so funny, so emotional, so witty, and so precise. I’ve included examples:
1. “”You have to come, No. Everyone is going to be there.”

Val should know better than to think that last part was sweetening, the deal, especially given the portrait of my life at this moment: sprawled in bed, laptop on stomach, Coke in hand, halfway through my third Gilmore Girls episode of the afternoon.” (This is so me!)

2. “”It was fine pizza,” I say. “But what’s with the triangles?”

“Makes it taste better.”

“I think you’re the only one who thinks that.”

“I am misunderstood in my time.”

“You’re misunderstood in every time, Alan.”

“It is as you say.””

I don’t know why, but it’s just so funny to me how Noah and his friends converse. The three of them (Noah, main character, and his best friends – twins – Val and Alan) remind me of Lorelai and Rory, which is fitting, as they watch GG together.

Noah spends a lot of time obsessing over his “strange fascinations”, which include a Youtube video showing a girl who took a picture of herself everyday for 40 years aging on camera, a picture a local band member dropped in his classroom, OMG (Old Man Goiter, a man he sees on the same walking path everyday), and an author who lived well before him. These take up a lot of his time, but there’s more:

His younger sister, Penny, who is obsessed with Breakfast at Tiffany’s and says things like, “Noah, Darling” and sneaks their pet dog into a suitcase to take places. She’s a delight.

Exquisite vocabulary.


Woven in “histories” of how people from the past have lives that are woven together by dates and such. I didn’t look into any of it to see if it’s true, but if it is, it’s pretty cool.

A lot of David Bowie references and facts.

And more 😉


When I find a book that I devour like this one, it’s hard for me to fill out this part of my reviews. So good job, Arnold.

I will say that I think the last half read slower than the first for me. It might not have needed all 410 pages, but I still loved it and recommend it!


5/5 stars!

5 star



  1. […] is a bonus entry because I ordered it after I came back from London. I had read a blogpost by Give Me Coffee and Books about this book (click for her review). It really interested me and I immediately added it to my wishlist with the intention of buying it in […]


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