My Year of Rest and Relaxation

My Year of Rest and Relaxation by Ottessa Moshfegh

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By Ottessa Moshfegh

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One of The Reading Agency Books of the Year 2018

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Young, thin, pretty, a recent Columbia graduate, she lives in an apartment on the Upper East Side of Manhattan paid for, like everything else, by her inheritance.

But there is a vacuum at the heart of things, and it isn’t just the loss of her parents in college, or the way her Wall Street boyfriend treats her, or her sadomasochistic relationship with her alleged best friend.

It’s the year 2000 in a city aglitter with wealth and possibility; what could be so terribly wrong? This story of a year spent under the influence of a truly mad combination of drugs, designed to heal us from our alienation from this world, shows us how reasonable, even necessary, that alienation sometimes is.

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09 Aug 2018


A dark and disturbing story full of tragically sad characters, particularly the main character and her friend. It's supposed to be a funny book but although I thought it well written it didn't make me laugh at all. It's more of the same from Ottessa Moshfegh in that we have a sort of anti-heroine who we meet warts (or rather eye boogers, puke and poor hygeine) and all, at a very dark time in her life. The the pathos is relentless and at times borders on tedium as she takes yet another cocktail of drugs, watches more movies and misses more days of her existence (can hardly call it a life) but I had to keep reading to find out whether she and her friend would be ok in the end.

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