I won't say that Shut Up, Ugly is flawless. A long conversation that Burns has with a butler is like P.G. Wodehouse with his head cut off. There is some fidgety, not-quite-necessary indie humor. But Pendarvis, whose last novel, Awesome, was about a giant sexy robot, is generally in cool command of his nonsense. You won't catch him using words like "corbelling" and "newel post." What do birds peck at?
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