Reviews tagging Excrement

내 휴식과 이완의 해, by Ottessa Moshfegh

49 reviews

elle_isobe's review against another edition

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dark reflective sad medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

3.75


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yogomagpie's review against another edition

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dark funny slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? No
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.0

This was such a strange experience but I enjoyed it. There wasn’t really a plot, and if I were to explain this book to someone I don’t know what I would say other than “a young woman (unnamed) decides she wants to sleep for a year and we get to observe it.” The ending was abrupt but I guess that is fine for a book with minimal plot.

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marciafelis's review against another edition

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challenging dark funny reflective slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.0

This book was quite the experience. From chuckling at Dr Tuttle's unreasonable prescriptions and advice to the uneasiness when some of the issues depicted in the book hit a little too close to home, it manages not to be boring despite the fact that not a lot of things actually happen.

There's an artist in the book, Ping Xi, whose work divides critics who either think it's genius or pretentious junk. I can't help but feel that character is a sort of prescient reference to the book's own reception, whether that was the author's intention or not.

I'm not sure whether I'll ever want to reread the book, but I certainly don't regret the time I spent reading it the first time around.

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danaaliyalevinson's review against another edition

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dark emotional funny sad fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? It's complicated
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.25

This was a super quick read and definitely spoke to my inner born and raised New Yorker millennial ennui. I loved the way it played with the humor that peppered the literal and figurative darkness.
SpoilerMy only grip, as a born and raised New Yorker, is the usage of 9/11 at the end. I’m not precious about representations of that day, I just found its usage a bit lazy in its shorthand for emotional impact.
I think the story easily could’ve existed without it.

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avocadotoastbee's review against another edition

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dark reflective medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.5

I absolutely loved the book!  couldn't put the book down, even though it became predictable at the end.
The plot was bizarre, but comforting as it was about a woman who hibernates for a year. The main character does what I, being the lazy person that I am, have always wanted to do - sleep my life away. Overall, the nameless narrator and all the other characters are not likable. They are all in their own way flawed. This gives the reader the distance needed to focus on what is happening. And even though the plot description makes it sound like nothing much happens, the story does take some eventful turns. My Year of Rest and Relaxation portrays depression and society at the turn of the century/early 2000s accurately. But it was not entirely depressing to read. At times it was even funny.
All in all, I really enjoyed My Year of Rest and Relaxation and would read it again.

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maryjohnstone's review against another edition

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challenging reflective slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? No
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

3.25

I appreciated the in-depth examination of depression and how it can affect people. Even the main character, a wealthy, beautiful and privileged woman, can be a victim of depression. The story had no plot or structure, which was a clear representation of how depression can make our story go around in circles, never leading anywhere. 
However, I felt this book was striving to be overly clever. I felt frustrated throughout that there was so little substance and I cannot tell you much of what occurred in this book other than the shock factor scenes that felt imbalanced to the rest of the book. 
The characterisation of the female lead was interesting as well as I felt both pity for her but angry at her. But as the book went on, I liked her less and less. I felt the ending was supposed to make me feel happy for her development but I felt that I was an inaccurate portrait of battling mental illness for most people. But then again are we meant to relate to a stunning, rich, privileged, orphaned woman who lives in New York?

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kt2e56's review against another edition

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dark fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? No
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

2.0

Ugh. First of all, it’s not hard to “get” what’s happening with this book. Just like American Psycho, which this book reminded me of quite a bit, My Year of Rest & Relaxation is unbelievably shallow. So me not liking it doesn’t mean it went over my head. I just didn’t like the book.

I know the author has been on a crusade about how it’s sexist to not like a book with unlikable female characters but it’s not that I don’t like books about unlikable women, I like well-written books about unlikable women. The nameless main character is boring. She just is. She’s racist and nasty and cruel but above all, just so fucking boring. And the author is boring. We get it: somehow despite not showering for weeks, having crusted up eyes, toothpaste all over her face, and god knows what else…everyone is bending over backwards to let the main character know that she’s still just so beautiful and perfect and nobody could ever be thinner or prettier. My god. Find something less cliche.

What was I’m assuming supposed to be some big shocking reveal at the end about Reva dying in 9/11, I literally predicted when I was 22% of the way into the book. So not really that shocking. Just another cliched attempt at controversy.

I did give this one whole extra star for the spot on critiques about the art world. I thought that was genuinely funny and satirical. Ditto for the author’s description of Long Island (I live one town over from Farmingdale in Massapequa. Lol.) which I found pretty funny. Otherwise? Meh. I don’t take Infermiterol but I’m sure I’ll forget this book in three days.

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marjoleinvanderspoel's review against another edition

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challenging dark emotional funny reflective sad medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.5

When I started this book, I was sure I hated it. It gave me such sex and the city and internalised misogyny vibes, and i really wasnt in the mood for it. So i put it down, and picked it up again a few weeks later. I was hooked. Sure, the main character is elitist and horrible, but she's also so relatable. I wish I could also go to sleep for a year and wake up with a new zest for life. I know this isn't supposed to be ~goals~ but it literally is. What does that say about our horrible, capitalist,  "meritocratic" society?

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whitenoiz's review against another edition

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dark funny reflective slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

3.5


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bookishlittleme's review against another edition

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dark emotional reflective sad fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? No
  • Diverse cast of characters? It's complicated
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.0

I found the writing extremely fluid much like a thought process which is exactly what it is coming from the unnamed character serving as the narrator. The narrator is extremely unlikeable but incredibly human; she has a bunch of trauma
Spoiler (the death of her father from cancer, her relationship with her mother who committed suicide, as well as a destructive on and off relationship with her ex boyfriend, and more)
from her past, this doesn't make me want to like her or excuse any of her behaviour and the way she treats and manipulates the people in her life. She is also extremely self aware making her even more unlikable. This novel explores privilege especially with our narrator was not the rich, conventionally attractive, blonde, young woman without many responsibilities her year of hibernation
Spoiler (which in the end works out for her and she ends up having a renaissance of feelings about life)
wouldn't have happened and the alternative would be very different. I would say it's worth a read if it's been on your list but definitely check your content warnings. 

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