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Sunday, 4 November 2018

Book review: Everything Under, Daisy Johnson (2018)

I only picked up this novel because it had been shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize but it’s something that is sort of like what you'd get if Virginia Woolf had written in the style of Peter Carey.

The writer never gets to the point, and keeps you guessing for page after page as the protagonist looks for her mother (you finally understand, after several chapters have elapsed) then there’s the matter of Marcus (who Marcus is, I didn’t stick around long enough to find out). Then her father.

The pieces of the puzzle lob into your consciousness slowly, one after the other, as if the story were really that important it had to be told in a way that would frustrate the reader the maximum possible amount. But you are never told why the protagonist is so important you had to be told all these details of her life in this particularly circuitous way. This is a real stinker and in the end a different book won the prize. Thank goodness! The judges have been misled many times in the past.

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