Book Review – Eileen by Ottessa Moshfegh

Eileen

Eileen is a 2015 novel by Ottessa Moshfegh, the author’s first full-length book of fiction, which won her the PEN/Hemingway Foundation award in 2016. Set during a bitter winter in 1964, the story follows Eileen Dunlop, a disturbed 24-year-old woman living in a nowhere town in Massachusetts. Between working as a secretary in a youth prison and caring for her callous, alcoholic father at home, Eileen lives a life of misery and self-loathing, fantasizing about leaving her hometown forever. The story follows her life over the course of several days, leading up to the fateful Christmas Eve when her life changes forever.Read More »

WWW Wednesday – November 18, 2020

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WWW Wednesday is a weekly book meme run by Sam over at Taking on a World of Words. Check out her post and others over on her blog!

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


Currently Reading

Thrawn AlliancesI started reading Thrawn: Alliances by Timothy Zahn on Sunday and have gotten nearly 30% of the way through it so far, which feels like a decent amount of progress for me. I’m enjoying it quite a bit, the story split between two different eras; the Clone War and the Imperial era. It tells of a mission Anakin underwent to planet Batuu to look for a missing Padmé in the former time, with Thrawn meeting him there and offering assistance, and in the latter Thrawn and Darth Vader return to the planet to investigate a disturbance in the Force sensed by the Emperor. Though the story has spent more time in the past with Anakin, I am enjoying the juxtaposition between the two times. It’s fascinating to see both him and Vader represented so firmly in the same story, the differences with how he interacts with Thrawn being the most dynamic.


Recently Finished

EileenOver the weekend I finished reading Eileen by Ottessa Moshfegh, and I must say the slow burn really paid off by the end. It spent a lot of meticulous time getting into the head of the character and really understanding how she ticks, which built up well toward her foreshadowed disappearance and the circumstances surrounding it. The climactic chapter had a great deal of suspense to it as well, banking on so much of the groundwork laid leading up to it. There are some pieces I was able to connect on my own before things were revealed, but it was also much darker than I had been anticipating. I meant to have my review up yesterday, but life got a bit in the way of that, as it it wont to do. I should have it up by tomorrow.


Reading Next

MaskeradeWith my final books of the year pretty much set in stone, I have decided I will start reading Maskerade by Terry Pratchett next, the 18th Discworld novel. I haven’t read about the Witches since last December, which doesn’t feel that long ago for some reason, yet there have been three books between them all the same. I’m glad I will be meeting my Discworld quota for the year once this is done. I’m always happy to read about my favourite coven too, and I’m hoping I’ll be able to quickly read through this book during the remainder of November.

Until next week, thank you for reading! Feel free to share your own post down below.

WWW Wednesday – November 11, 2020

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WWW Wednesday is a weekly book meme run by Sam over at Taking on a World of Words. Check out her post and others over on her blog!

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


Currently Reading

EileenI’m just over 60% of the way through Eileen by Ottessa Moshfegh. I’m still enjoying reading it, but my goodness is this story a slow burn. It is still building up toward some fateful event that has Eileen disappear from her dreary life. There has been more intrigue and new developments than the beginning of the story, so it doesn’t quite feel like the story is dragging its feet, but I’m surprised it’s still yet to happen all the same. It’s actually holding me in a good deal of suspense, as Eileen narrates in past tense and continually drops hints about what’s going to happen next. She does spend a great deal fantasizing about running away, so I really want to know what happens that actually gets her to do it, considering how miserable her life is already.


Recently Finished

Nothing this week!


Reading Next

Thrawn AlliancesMaking a last second decision as I write this, I have decided I will read Thrawn: Alliances by Timothy Zahn next, the second book in the new canon Thrawn trilogy of Star Wars novels. Hopefully I can get it and a third book done fairly quickly this month, so I can keep to my last-minute revision to my reading schedule. This novel has Thrawn tackling a threat to the Empire alongside Darth Vader, intercut with their first encounter during the Clone Wars when Vader was still Anakin Skywalker. I’m excited to see how this pans out. I’ve still got a number of Star Wars comic book volumes to read too, so I’ll probably start chipping away at them soon as well. I mean it this time.

Until next week, thank you for reading! Feel free to share your own post down below.

WWW Wednesday – November 4, 2020

www_wednesdays

WWW Wednesday is a weekly book meme run by Sam over at Taking on a World of Words. Check out her post and others over on her blog!

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


Currently Reading

EileenIn a last minute decision the other day, I decided to start Eileen by Ottessa Moshfegh as my next book off of my to-read list for the year. It’s been more than a bit since I last read one of her books, this being earlier than the previous two, and apparently her first book to really blow up in popularity, if the number of Goodreads ratings is a good indicator. I’m only 18% of the way through so far, and it’s been fairly slow-going, but I am enjoying the way it is building out the main character and her dreary life. As with her other books, she captures a sense of human misery very well, but in a way that feels mundane in a rather haunting way. I eagerly anticipate Eileen’s impending disappearance, which she plans to enact herself.


Recently Finished

Alien Sea of SorrowsOn the morning of Halloween I finished reading Alien: Sea of Sorrows by James A. Moore, and with all said and done I’m really quite fond of it. It did have some glaring continuity issues related the previous book, unfortunately, but I can forgive them. It doesn’t stand out as all that unique, especially after all of the setup is done with, but I became decently attached to a number of the characters and I really enjoyed the glimpse into the way the aliens themselves think and feel. It gave us a peak behind the curtain into their psyche without spoiling too much of their mystique. I also loved the ending and look forward to any possible sequels the future has in store (if one hasn’t come out already). I should have a review up soon.

Adventures into the Unknown Archives Vol. 1I started Adventures into the Unknown Archives Vol. 1 on Halloween night, but I didn’t get it finished until the morning of November 2. This was my last Frighteningly Good Read and goodness was it a strange little trip. Horror comics in 1948 were weird, or at least these were. Not exactly in a good way, though. The pacing was all over the place and I could never really take any of the “horrors” seriously. One such figure called “the Living Ghost” appeared in two stories, depicted as what looked like a cross between the Devil, Dracula, and Frankenstein’s monster. He was an all-powerful demon with command over the undead who got up to such deeds as strangling switch operators and pushing cars off of cliffs. Captivating stuff.


Reading Next

Initially, I was planning to start Moby-Dick by Herman Melville instead of Eileen, but now I’m wondering if I can finish everything on my to-read list except for that book. It’s still a long shot, but we’ll see. It’s the most daunting book and if I can read all the others except that one I’ll be pretty satisfied. Don’t know what will follow Eileen yet.

Until next week, thank you for reading! Feel free to share your own post down below.