Dept. of Speculation by Jenny Offill

51tWJT1BYdL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_The Buddhists say there are 121 states of consciousness. Of these, only three involve misery or suffering. Most of us spend our time moving back and forth between these three.

What it’s about: When a woman discovers that her husband has cheated on her, she must decide whether to stay in the marriage.

Why I liked it: This is a short and extremely personal book that reads more a like a long prose poem than a novel. It is written in a stream-of-consciousness, fragmentary style, and it took me until about halfway through to click with the writing style and really connect with the book. (I also read the book in two sittings.) The writing is lovely, though, quite nuanced, and I think it poignantly captures the roil of emotions around both becoming a mother and finding out your husband has betrayed you. I anticipate wanting to reread it in the near future, because I am sure there is a lot of nuance that I missed, and that alone makes this a worthwhile read.

Who might like it: I’m not sure. This is one of those books that either speaks to you or it doesn’t. But it’s very short, so why not give it a try?

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