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Cluster F Bomb / Literature

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  • In Animorphs by K.A. Applegate this happens when Erek calls Jake out in the last book.
  • Prey by Michael Crichton definitely qualifies. One character utters five F-bombs in one sentence.
  • Nick And Norah's Infinite Playlist by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan. 245 uses, more or less.
  • Richard fucking Marcinko. The fucking Rogue Warrior books fucking run on fucking cluster fucking F bombs.
  • Pick a novel by Stephen King. Any of them. He was criticized enough for it that one aspect of Annie Wilkes (the villain of the novel Misery) was a near-frothing intolerance for bad language in her favorite author's books.
    • This is lampshaded in It, where one of the characters notes that his author friend used the F word 206 times in his latest novel.
      • See also The Tommyknockers, where he refers to himself as that fella who lives up Bangor way, and his books as being full of monsters and dirty words.
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    • King discusses it in his autobiography/how-to guide On Writing, and says that he doesn't believe in tiptoe-ing around foul language if that's what the characters would actually say in the situation.
  • The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
  • Spoofed in The Truth where Mr. Tulip is likely to drop "—ing" bombs. Yes, he actually pronounces the dashes. ("An —ing werewolf? Are you —ing kidding me?!") Terry Pratchett has referred to what it sounds like as "the Englishman's version of the bushman 'click' language". Sacharissa later tries to curse the same way, but leaves out the dashes (she just yells "ing", and proclaims it to be very satisfying).
    • Hilariously averted in Feet of Clay, when a mob of priests accuse Vimes of "gross profanity and the worship of idols" for hiring the golem Dorfl as a policeman. Vimes' reply rates as a Missed Moment of Awesome F Bombing:
      Vimes: I don't worship him, I'm just employing him. And he's far from idol. {takes deep breath} And if it's gross profanity you're looking for—
      Dorfl: {making timely interruption} Might I Offer A Comment?
  • One of the articles in Our Dumb Century is "Last Night's Fireside Chat Just a Stream of Cuss Words".
    • Also "HOLY FUCKING SHIT: Man Walks on Fucking Moon".
    Historic First Words on Moon: "Holy Living Fuck"
    Fuckers! Fuckers! I'm the President of the Goddamn United States!
  • Explicitly averted in The Lord of the Rings, where Tolkien explains that evil creatures talk like this all the time, but he cleaned it up:
    But Orcs and Trolls spoke as they would, without love of words or things; and their language was actually more degraded and filthy than I have shown it. I do not suppose that any will wish for a closer rendering, though models are easy to find. Much the same sort of talk can still be heard among the orc-minded; dreary and repetitive with hatred and contempt, too long removed from good to retain even verbal vigour, save in the ears of those to whom only the squalid sounds strong.
  • Lady Chatterley's Lover was controversial and banned for its use of "fuck" and other words, but unlike the more typical modern Cluster F-Bomb, the context is explicit portrayals of characters having sex and talking dirty to each other. Who could have predicted ahead of time that when they decriminalized the ban on using the word "fuck" in literature/media, dirty talk would still be as much of a fringe phenomenon as it was before, while the far more striking trend is the popularization of comics who break the taboos against obscenity just for the hell of it?
  • Dave Barry, in the introduction to his novel Tricky Business, repeatedly warns the reader that "THIS BOOK CONTAINS BAD WORDS." This paragraph can be found repeating continually through several of its chapters:
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  • House of Leaves, anyone? To quote Johnny Truant;
    "Fuck. Fuck. Fuck. Fuck you. Fuck me. Fuck this. Fuck. Fuck. Fuck."
  • In the book Lamb (a comedy about Jesus' best friend), the narrator is resurrected in our time to write his version of the Gospel. He also includes random comments on his bewilderment in the modern world, including a rant on curses, which lampshades this.
    "Back home we had maybe half a dozen curse words. Here you can curse the air blue for twenty minutes without repeating yourself..."
    • Pretty much any book by Christopher Moore. Pull one off the shelf, open it to any page, and you're guaranteed to see the word "fuck" at least once.
  • Closing Time, the sequel to Joseph Heller's Catch-22, had this peppery exchange between Milo Minderbinder and the decidedly irreverent Ex-P.F.C. Wintergreen, regarding Yossarian's likely response to their schemes to defraud the United States government:
    Milo: He might object.
    Wintergreen: Then fuck him. Let him object. We'll ignore the fuck again. What the fuck! What the fuck fucking difference does it make if the fuck objects or not! We can ignore the fucking fuck again, can't we? Shit.
    Milo: I wish you wouldn't swear so much in the nation's capital.
  • In his college novel I Am Charlotte Simmons, Tom Wolfe has a very hilarious discussion of what he calls the "fuck patois", frequently used by college students. It is all very clinical, analysing how the word can be used as adjective, noun, adverb, etc., providing an example for each, and then at the end of this very long list it concludes "And sometimes, it can even refer to copulation! (So, you'll never believe who I fuckin' walked in on fuckin'." The passage itself is very funny in that there is no vitriol behind any of the uses, and were it not for the variants of "fuck" given as examples after every type of word, it could be a regular old discussion of grammar. It is, in a word, AWESOME.
    • Earlier, in The Bonfire of the Vanities, when describing the beginning of one character's workday where, he allows this trope, amply deployed in the dialogue, to escape into the narrative: "Another fucking day at the Bronx Fucking District Attorney's Office was off to a fucking start."
  • The last joke in Isaac Asimov's Treasury of Humor is a subversion of this trope. It's about a foul-mouthed soldier telling his friends what the fuck he did while out on the fuckin' town on a fuckin' 24-hour pass. The punchline is that he uses the word "fuck" to describe everything EXCEPT sexual intercourse.
  • Used liberally in John Dies at the End. In one memorable fuckin' moment, when Dave is being threatened by Robert North...
    "No, no. Keep driving," said a soft voice in my ear. "She will not bite if you keep driving."
    Fuck that. Fuck that idea like the fucking Captain of the Thai Fuck Team fucking at the fucking Tour de Fuck.
  • In The City & the City: "Even though of course those fuckers, those fuckers more than any other fuckers — and we have our share of fuckers."
  • Any fucking Charles Bukowski book, often in caps making the statement seem bizarrely monotone and awkwardly hilarious.
  • Janet Evanovich's Stephanie Plum books, anything said by Sally (Salvatore) Sweet. Example:
    "Nobody heard of fucking Howling Dogs. I was fucking living in a fucking packing crate in the alley behind Romanos Pizza. I've been punk, funk, grunge, and R&B. I've been with the Funky Butts, the Pitts, Beggar Boys, and Howling Dogs. I was with Howling Dogs the longest. It was a fucking depressing experience. I couldn't stand fucking singing all those fucking songs about fucking hearts fucking breaking and fucking goldfish fucking going to heaven. And then I had to fucking look like some western dude. I mean, how can you have any self-respect when you have to go on stage in a cowboy hat?"
    I was pretty good at cussing, but I didn't think I could keep up with Sally. On my best day, I couldn't squeeze all those "f" words into a sentence. "Boy, you can really curse," I said.
    "You can't be a fucking musician without fucking cursing."
  • Precious in Push by Sapphire, though it's really more like Cluster B and S Bomb. Every woman she doesn't like is a bitch, and she replaces the word stuff with shit. The most extreme version is her calling her former principal "cunt bucket" all the time. May be justified, in that she is uneducated and doesn't know any better.
  • From The Paranoid's Pocket Guide To Mental Disorders That You Can Just Feel Coming On: The "Inner Monologue" for Intermittent Explosive Disorder, AKA Rage Disorder:
    "Mother of [expletive deleted]!! What the [expletive deleted] is wrong with you?! How [expletive deleted] hard is it to [expletive deleted] pick up a [expletive deleted] set of [expletive deleted] keys?! Throw those [expletive deleted] keys across the room! Take that you [expletive deleted] car [expletive deleted] keys!! You can wipe down these stupid [expletive deleted] plates but you can't [expletive deleted] grab some car keys?! Look, all the [expletive deleted] dishes are getting smashed! You're smashing all the [expletive deleted] dishes because you don't [expletive deleted] get to have a [expletive deleted] set of [expletive deleted] dishes! Good! Take that you [expletive deleted] plates. Take that!!
  • Used for laughs in the Maggody mysteries with Hammet Buchanon, who can barely open his mouth without swearing unless there's an immediate payoff for not doing so. The joke is that Hammet is about nine when introduced, and his siblings' language is even worse.
  • The poem Evidently Chickentown by John Cooper Clarke is a prime example of the Cluster F Bomb, using the word 83 times throughout the poem (though in some versions, he tones it down by saying "bloody" instead).
  • In the opening of A White Merc With Fins the narrator is trying to have a conversation with someone who has brought the F-word game into play, whereby every speaker must say Fuck more times than the previous one. In order to get the conversation back on track the narrator snaps:
    You have been listening to absofuckinglutely fuck all, fuck you you fucking dull fucker the whole fucking point is it's not a real fucking gun anyone with half a fucking brain can fucking see it's not a real fucking gun underfuckingstand you monufuckingmentally fucked-up fucker?
  • Havemercy: Rook is the fucking king of the cluster F-bomb. According to a tally kept on the LJ comm, he says 'fuck' or some variation of the word 188 times. His most famous sentence is "Where the fuck is fucking Niall?", which is one third fucked.
    • Lee Broglia has Rook beat; he really goes off once in literature, but it's a total doozy. The then-coach of the Cubs had taken the team from a crappy start to a struggling improvement, but the fans booed. He exploded into a scathing rebuttal with F and S bombs, an CS and a couple of MFs, all to a reporter, and he said "quote me" in advance. The cubs did much better after reading that, but Jay Johnstone, recapping it all in his autobiography on his baseball career, speculates that that rant pretty well torpedoed the coach's job. Maybe if he'd won the Series...
  • The Lies of Locke Lamora series, while otherwise well-written, is somewhat plagued by gratuitous language, with F Bombs making up a large percentage.
  • Played with in My Bonny Light Horseman Given that Mary Faber is a young lady in Regency England, she unleashes a cluster Bless Bomb on the First Lord of the Admiralty.
  • Subverted in The Subject Steve. There is a lot of swearing going on, but it's not intended to be cool or gritty. It's quite casual and apathetic, like everything else in the book.
  • Aleine Gunder IX from The Night Angel Trilogy. Played for laughs. Poor Aleine or Niner as he is not so lovingly called by just about everyone, swears all the time. He's can actually be quite creative there's only one problem, the only swear he knows is the word shit. Due to this fact, and his childish nature he is prone to rant for several minutes. This is so much the case that when he starts cursing everyone in earshot just tunes him out. It doesn't help much that he's the king and therefore no one will swear in front of him. Then along comes resident badass Durzo.
    Niner, "You''re shit! You shitting, shitting shit!"
    Durzo, "Your Majesty, a man of your stature's cursing vocabulary ought to extend beyond a tedious repetition of the excreta that fills the void between his ears." It wasn't until after Niner saw the looks on his guards faces that he realized he'd been insulted.
  • Finding Snowflakes has the usually shy, introverted main character who becomes an exceptional one when mad. Hilarity Ensues.
  • The Dresden Files gives us this gem, which is a combination of two of Harry's favorite curses, "Stars and Stones" and "Hells Bells", with a bit of normal swearing mixed in.
    Harry: Hell's holy stars and freaking stones shit bells.
  • The ancient Roman poet Catullus, in his poem "Carmen 16", began with the line "Pedicabo ego vos et irrumabo," which translates as, "I will fuck you in the ass and rape you in the face." It then gets more obscene.
  • In Death: A particularly impressive instance of this occurs in Treachery In Death Turns out its a very bad idea to threaten Eve Dallas in front of her fellow cops.:
    Detective Jacobson: Drop the fucking weapon, you fucking motherfucker or I'll fucking scramble your brains. Hands up! Hands up where I can fucking see them, you fucking cocksucker. You fucking breathe wrong, you fucking blink wrong, and I will fuck you up.
    Jacobson: Fucker. On your fucking face, you fucking shit coward. Stream my Lieutenant in the fucking back? Fuck you!
    • He then proceeds to break one of the man's fingers.
  • Children's book pastiche, "Go the Fuck to Sleep." Even better when narrated by Samuel L. Jackson.
  • In Vortex, Allison/Treya has a bit of an epiphany, illustrating this trope in Inner Monologue form: "There it was, the heresy Treya had always resisted and for which the voice of Allison had silently begged: Fuck Vox, fuck its quiet tyranny fuck its frozen dream religion, and fuck its craven obsession with the Hypotheticals. Fuck especially the madness that had brought Vox to this ruined Earth, and fuck the more profound madness I believed was about to break loose aboard her. Fuck Vox!"
  • American Gods is comparatively swear-heavy as it is, but one line takes the cake:
    Czernobog: Fuck you. Fuck you and fuck your mother and fuck the fucking horse you fucking rode in on.
  • The Barrytown Trilogy by Roddy Doyle (the first book of which was The Commitments) pretty much has at least one 'fuck' per page in each book, and quite often more. There's also a liberal sprinkling of c-words. Apparently this is a fairly accurate portrayal of working-class Ireland.
  • In Septimus Heap, this is Nicko's reaction to being trapped within a living tree.
  • In Just the Girls You Need, a story making fun of the magical girl anime genera, this is one character's whole personalty. Her full name is Red the Profanity Princess, and every single sentence she says is spiced up with as many swear words as she can fit in there. This is in fact making fun of how lots of magical girl animes are laced with swear words. She calls the main character a 'fucking country slut' and a 'crybaby bitch', among other things.
  • There exists a book called Bitch Are You Retarded? Stop Being a Dumbass!.
  • Mildmay drops a lot of curses in The Doctrine of Labyrinths, but the most complete example is from Corbie in Corambis: "What the fuck? What the fucking fuck?" To be fair, she had just heard the start-up of an ancient suicide-inducing Magitek clock.
  • Combined with a Narrative Profanity Filter in Hidden Talents. When Flinch breaks his arm, Martin thinks there are chickens clucking, then realizes Flinch is swearing at the pain. Which expletive rhymes with cluck?
  • The Jennifer Morgue by Charles Stross has a memorable example of how one can combine the Cluster F-Bomb with a Narrative Profanity Filter, two tropes you wouldn't think you could mix. (Of course, given Bob's profession, he may be referring to Black Speech.)
    Bob Howard: I start swearing. Not my usual "shit-fuck-piss-cunt-bugger" litany, but really rude words.
  • Hyperion Cantos has an example when Martin Silenus the poet is outraged that CEO Gladstone won't save Father Hoyt. Brawne Lamia points at that the F Bomb didn't actually accomplish anything.
  • In Mansfield Park, Mr. Price's habit of saying "By God" in every sentence is treated like this (as the book was written in the 1800s). The text studiously renders it "by G—" and it embarrasses his daughter Fanny to no end.
  • In Humane Tyranny, Tiffany is the only character with a disdain for swearing and does not swear at all. Everyone else swears a lot and thinks nothing of it.
  • For a youth book, Why We Took the Car contains a lot of not so child-friendly swearing and insulting.
  • The historical novel The Wake has several Old English examples.
  • Vampirocracy: In true Urban Fantasy protagonist fashion, Leon has yet to meet a swear word he doesn't like.
  • The Martian: Mark Watney shows particular enthusiasm for these in moments of stress, as does beleaguered NASA Media Relations director Annie Montrose.


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