This is try number three with Ottessa Moshfegh’s work and I have to finally admit that she’s not an author suited to my tastes, even as I admire her immense talent for writing.
She is great at making the banal interesting and describing the internal monologue of the isolated and potentially manic. Her prose is beautiful. I totally get why people like her.
But her characters and stories are so relentlessly uninteresting.
I would have never imagined a person with this kind of talent could write such a boring story with less than 300 pages.
I totally get the mystery was the hook to get the reader interested in the life of Vera. That its resolution was never going to be tidy and that it wasn’t the point of reading. Frankly, I should have known better. But I still wanted to try with Moshfegh because she has so many gifts as a writer.
Yet every 2-3 pages, I just kept saying to myself, I don’t care, I don’t care, Why am I reading about a story I have zero interest in? If I hadn’t bought the book for my birthday, I may have quit it.
The resolution of the story was interesting and even more so was the interview in the back of the book with Moshfegh and her mother, where she autopsies her reasons for writing the story and making it sound way more interesting than it actually was. It made me reconsider some of my sentiments towards it. But at the end of the day, her work is just not for me.