"With this electric romp of a novel, Pilger turns a neon light on to the intersection of romantic love and feminism." Publishers Weekly
"Craving whatever she hasn't got and detesting whatever she has, Zoe Pilger's brilliant and psychically bulimic narrator is everyone's anti-Bridget Jones. An awareness of the pathology of romantic love, and a terror of what lies in its absence, lies at the heart of this brutally funny book." Chris Kraus, author of I Love Dick
"Protagonist Ann-Marie wanders through London's glittery underground of Bright Young Artists, concussed by life itself. Pilger's love story fictionalizes her contexts so extremely that every adolescent romance--with art, feminism, even that gross dude she had a one night stand with--is only a deceptive form mobilized to assault neutered authority. A masochistic siren song--100 percent more awesome than The Little Mermaid." Trisha Low, author of The Compleat Purge
"Super-smart, funny and dark as midnight." Marie Claire UK
"An unflinching account of post-feminist urban life. Satirical, snarky and wildly entertaining." Observer
"Brilliantly odd, very funny." Financial Times
"Perfectly pitched satire." New Statesman
Gleeful weirdness and vicious satire come together in a debut novel that follows an awful yet surprisingly likable young woman as she attempts to navigate the painful confusions of love, herself, and other people.Ann-Marie is 23 and discontent with everything. Tormented by the end of a long-term relationship and at loose ends after leaving the rarefied world of Cambridge, she lives in London, working haphazardly at a fancy restaurant and staying with her friend Freddie in a lavish apartment that belongs to his uncle. She's frequently ridiculous, to the point of seeming both unhinged and unbelievable—she pounces on strange men, acting seductive and then killing the mood with mad gestures like extinguishing a cigarette on his chest—but her desperate search for substance and creeping terror that she won't find it, or will fail to recognize it if she does, give the novel an attractive feeling of dark reality. Pilger's vivid depiction of Anne-Marie's self-conscious dissatisfaction pulls the reader along as the character is plunged into ever more absurd situations. She meets a celebrated feminist author, Stephanie Haight, and falls into the role of ill-behaved disciple to her provocative and abusive teachings. She runs to and from a social circle of spoiled, drug-addled, hipster youth, giving Pilger an opportunity for biting depictions of the silliest excesses of artistic and academic posturing. The novel bangs on the theme of the dangers of obsession with romantic love; the characters are aware of this obsession, dissect it, and fall prey to it. Pilger's efforts to skewer that obsession are funny but bleak, offering little to alleviate the nastiness and discomfort except for breezily conversational writing occasionally interrupted by strikingly grotesque imagery. A darkly funny, outrageous, and unromantic novel about a young woman obsessed with love.