Blurb, meaning words of praise on the back of a book, is a pathetic word that quickly devolves into an almost existential meaninglessness, not a shout into the void but a soft round brick shoring up nothingness. Blurb—rolly-polly already in its sound and to be taken as seriously as a beach ball or a random burble or a bubble; of air, of oil, of nothing that contains any sustenance. But the emptiness of a blurb is not truly empty: in that space exists a corruption self-aware with the horror of collusion: the blurb is attached parasitically to a book, sucking out all of the originality in favor of a comfortable banality and too-fulsome over-compensating injections of pus-like praise. This pus explodes all over the reader, who is influenced by this literary ectoplasmic spew in their perception of the text before reading a single page for themselves. A blurb is usually birthed bud-like by a fellow writer also feeding at the half-rotted hog-trough of publishing who hopes to benefit by association (another parasitical relationship) with the book at hand, and, long-term, to receive a foetid blurb in return. The blurb thus starts with a back scratch and ends with a mutual, world-encompassing reach-around, but it’s the reader who gets screwed. It is not enough that the reader is subjecting him- or herself to the stupidity found in one’s average book, but must also be inundated by stupidity on the outside. Biopsy a blurb and you find not just the stinking corruption of word-pus, you also find a grotesque yet accurate metaphor for distortion, warping, and group-think. In a way, a blurb is the essence of the worst of the literary world in concentrated, soul-deadening form.