I just …. what did I just read?
Books like this are where my “ugh, I’ve gotten this far, I might as well finish it.” It was something like 30% shorter than the last book I read, so I felt like I should probably power through. But was it worth it? Nah.
Things That Happened Before The Earthquake is rather hilariously titled because really it feels like nothing happens. Not as much nothing as Forest Dark, more a lot of “who cares?” I really don’t do well with plotless drama. When it’s just stories about people being people, I get a lot less forgiving.
Our main character is Eugenia, a teenager who moves from Italy to the US with her mother, father, and younger brother, ostensibly for her father to find a behind-the-lens career in Hollywood. And like right from the get-go, Barzini is going for what feels like shock value. Paragraph one, I’m scowling and double checking to see whether or not the author is a dude (nope, she’s a she, just writing like one). It’s I guess a coming-of-age story about a girl who moves across an ocean and goes full nympho for … reasons?
Yeah, okay, I’m a prude. I’m not a huge fan of BOOM SEX in stories. And that’s mostly what this book was. And when the author treats sex as “the thing that happened” (before the earthquake, oh no, now I hate myself) that makes it seem abnormal. I did not like this book. I’m glad it’s over.