Ottessa Moshfegh’s debut novel Eileen sounded like a great and intriguing read. The 1960’s, a girl’s escape from a boring life in a small New England town, a mysterious crime – there are lots of interesting plot points going for this book, which will be released in August 2015.
Unfortunately, this does not necessarily translate to the writing. Don’t get me wrong, Eileen Dunlop is an interesting yet thoroughly unlikable character, and her insights into her life range from bland and depressive to curious and strange. But the story drags on. There is no action, and a lot of repetitions. You constantly feel like surely, next page, something is going to happen. Not so much out of suspense, but rather because you see the pages of the book running out. The interesting plot only starts at the very end, where the reader finally finds out what hideous crime Eileen was involved in.
Eileen’s story is told in the first person, by an Eileen who is fifty years older and looking back on her life. First person narrative told by a despicable character in flashback is a bold choice for any novel, let alone a debut novel. Sometimes it works, but sadly, in this case, it does not.
With its depressing story and dragging plot, I had to force myself to finish reading, and found myself ready to simply abandon the book several times. The twist is neither “Hitchcockian,” nor is the writing anything “like Shirley Jackson or early Vladimir Nabokov,” as the description claimed.
If you want a slow, dull and very sad character study, look no further. If you want a plot twist that would make Hitchcock proud – look elsewere.
I’m glad you could make time for our Weekend Coffee Share! If we were having coffee today, you’d notice right away that we’re no longer in Germany. And we’re also not alone. If we were having coffee today, I’d invite you to join me and ma choupette, my best friend Veronique, for a coffee in the Northern Quarter of Manchester, England.
Veronique invited me to stay with her in Warrington, and I’ve been here since yesterday afternoon. It’s my first trip back to the UK since last July and I’ve missed it immensely. I’ve also missed my friend.
Today is a Girlie Day for us, with shopping (mainly for books and DVDs and music, though) and you’re welcome to join us.
If you are part of a current fandom – no matter whether it’s Sherlock, Doctor Who, Game of Thrones, Supernatural, The Walking Dead… the list goes on, – and you follow it somewhat online, you will probably have come across Fangirl Quest’sSceneframing pictures.
Sceneframing is the brainchild of Tiia Öhman and Satu Walden, two girls from Finland who love to visit filming locations. Together they have travelled around Europe (mainly UK, Ireland and Finland) and the US. Their photos show an iPad with a screen capture from [insert fandom here] in the exact location it was filmed. And the concept has proven so popular, it has become a worldwide phenomenon that left its creators in shock and awe.
(I got to interview the lovely ladies a year ago*. The interview was intended for a publication which ultimately decided not to use it. As I am now free to publish it elsewhere, I didn’t want to deny you this any longer.)