PDF / Epub ☀ Jillian Author Halle Butler – Tkcleaningservices.co.uk

Jillian I m pretty sure I read this because someone compared it to Eileen It s somewhat similar, I guess unlikeable directionless female narrator, saddled with ennui and hobbled by substance abuse and lack of ambition But it didn t exhilarate me in the same way That s not to say it was unpleasant it s well written and entertaining, novella length and imaginative But it was also mostly forgettable. too close for comfort, painfully sharp dialogue, deliciously loveable unlikeable women characters, and in the last two chapters a beautiful zoom out look at their surroundings that took me by surprise perfect poison can t wait to readfrom Halle Butler curbside splendor is publishing the best kind of american nightmare fiction. Megan, Recently Out Of College And Working A Meaningless Job As A Gastroenterologist S Secretary, Openly Hates All Of Her Friends For Being Happy And Successful She Makes Herself Feel Better By Obsessively Critiquing The Behavior Of Her Coworker, Jillian, A Rapid Cycling, Grotesque Optimist, Whose Downfall Is Precipitated By The Purchase Of A Dog Been there, not proud of it. I sent on my copy of Ottessa Moshfegh s excellent debut novel, Eileen , to a friend and she returned the favour with this novel and the caveat, I m not sure that I liked this, but there s definitely some similarities Indeed, I can see how one would read Moshfegh and Butler s work and draw parallels between the focus on unpleasant physical phenomenon and not always likeable characters However, Jillian lacks the compelling voice of Eileen and suffers in comparison to her Booker shortlisted I sent on my copy of Ottessa Moshfegh s excellent debut novel, Eileen , to a friend and she returned the favour with this novel and the caveat, I m not sure that I liked this, but there s definitely some similarities Indeed, I can see how one would read Moshfegh and Butler s work and draw parallels between the focus on unpleasant physical phenomenon and not always likeable characters However, Jillian lacks the compelling voice of Eileen and suffers in comparison to her Booker shortlisted relative.A book shouldn t only be judged by comparison, and Jillian does manage to stand apart Gastroenterologist secretaries, Jillian and Megan, are both stuck in some highly miserable ruts in their lives Megan, a depressed and substance dependant younger woman, hates the slightly older Jillian, fears becoming her, and relishes in her slow downfall over the course of the novel.Unfortunately, not much of this makes itself interesting There were occasional turns of dialogue or funny interactions that helped brighten the affair, but I found myself dragging my heels through the relatively short read I d recommend passing on this one gang It happens once a year, if I m lucky More realistically, they arrive every other year We are 10 days into January 2020, and it s already happened the emergence of a new favorite author, Halle Butler Favorite author is a difficult category to ascend to There are many books that I like a lot, even deigning to label them favorites but my pantheon of favorite authors, on the other hand, is lightly populated A favorite book excites me, entertains me, and encourages me to think deeply about so It happens once a year, if I m lucky More realistically, they arrive every other year We are 10 days into January 2020, and it s already happened the emergence of a new favorite author, Halle Butler Favorite author is a difficult category to ascend to There are many books that I like a lot, even deigning to label them favorites but my pantheon of favorite authors, on the other hand, is lightly populated A favorite book excites me, entertains me, and encourages me to think deeply about something A favorite author writes books that do all of the above but also engage me on a very primal and personal level, encouraging me to think deeply and differently about things that I already spend a lot of time thinking about For Halle Butler, those thoughts center on urban alienation, millennial malaise, and career ambitions or lack thereof Jillian, her debut novel, is slightlyexperimental fare than her most recent outing, The New Me Although the cover copy leads you to believe that you ll be observing the interactions between Jillian, an optimistic 30 year old receptionist, and Megan, her grumpy 20 something colleague driven crazy by Jillian s strident and misguided attempts to better herself, you actually jump between the minds of several characters, all of whom find themselves adrift in early 21st century Chicago Each of the characters is wondering, in their own way, what a meaningful life looks like when you re required, at minimum, to spend at least 40 hours a week working to get money to survive, and if you re lucky, afford that meaningful life The characters all have their own approach and fiercely judge the others for what they perceive to be woefully foolish pursuits of happiness The irony, of course, is that they are all strugglingor less with the same thing but lack the consciousness to recognize it in each other This description makes the novel sound painfully serious, but in fact it s quite funny, with an acerbic and cynical narration Butler has her finger squarely on the pulse of truth that she s managed to package into delightful ditties of novels that seem both lighter and darker than they really are She writes about lonely people who loathe other lonely people for being just as alone and pathetic as they are But reading her, you feel less alone, if only for a little while Having read Butler s most recent novel The New Me I thought I knew what to expect from Jillian but this is like that book s awful, evenmisanthropic and wild sibling Where TNM was biting and satirical this falls flat The characters have little to no redeeming qualities but in the way where I just didn t care about anything that happened in the story as opposed to in a way which made proceedings morbidly fascinating I found the narrative to be messy and confusing too, and nothing Having read Butler s most recent novel The New Me I thought I knew what to expect from Jillian but this is like that book s awful, evenmisanthropic and wild sibling Where TNM was biting and satirical this falls flat The characters have little to no redeeming qualities but in the way where I just didn t care about anything that happened in the story as opposed to in a way which made proceedings morbidly fascinating I found the narrative to be messy and confusing too, and nothing anyone did made any sense If you re at all curious about Butler s writing then do pick up her second novel because it s way better than this one Thank you Netgalley and Orion Publishing Group for the advance copy, which was provided in exchange for an honest review I m relieved that Halle Butler s The New Me is therecent of her two books, because for as much as I loved that book I could not wait to be finished with Jillian This was a viscerally unpleasant reading experience Jillian is about Megan, a young woman who seems at first to have a grudge for her coworker, Jillian, but whom we gradually learn judges all of her friends just as harshly By the end of the book, she realizes as the reader has all along that she has pretty serious depression I m relieved that Halle Butler s The New Me is therecent of her two books, because for as much as I loved that book I could not wait to be finished with Jillian This was a viscerally unpleasant reading experience Jillian is about Megan, a young woman who seems at first to have a grudge for her coworker, Jillian, but whom we gradually learn judges all of her friends just as harshly By the end of the book, she realizes as the reader has all along that she has pretty serious depression Meanwhile, Jillian herself is an optimist who tries to make positive strides starting a new career getting a dog forwarding emails to try to form an impossible relationship with Megan but can t ever get her life together and tells white lies to cover up what a mess she really is.Everyone who s followed my reviews on Goodreads knows I don t shy away from realistic bitterness, depression, or anger, because that s life But the steady, dull drumbeat of this book worsened by the cadence of Butler s spare prose became like the start of a nagging headache Characters judge each other Pretty bad, but not awful, things happen to them Plot is non existent Randomly in the second to last chapter there is a brief experimentation with switching character perspectives to the thoughts of birds and raccoons , which amounts to no furtherance of anything And then it s over with zero resolution, really, to any of the small character arcs that have cropped up.For as much as I recommend The New Me, I do not recommend Jillian Not unless you like feeling annoyed, unresolved, and like you d rather be doing anything other than reading about any of these characters This is some potent writing I got into the skewed twinning between the focuses on Jillian and Megan, but I think the real skill here is how Bulter keeps you alternating between rooting for and not liking either of these characters It s masterfully done and very moving, even in a normal daily life kind of scenario It definitely beats you around a bit too if for no other reason for what and how much it gets under your skin, but you don t want to stop reading It s stressful, but very good I m This is some potent writing I got into the skewed twinning between the focuses on Jillian and Megan, but I think the real skill here is how Bulter keeps you alternating between rooting for and not liking either of these characters It s masterfully done and very moving, even in a normal daily life kind of scenario It definitely beats you around a bit too if for no other reason for what and how much it gets under your skin, but you don t want to stop reading It s stressful, but very good I m impressed Thank you to netgalley and the publishers for a copy of this book This is the kind of style of writing I enjoy and can almost relate too It s a short, quick novel and as the characters could be considered unlikeable I found this novel to be just the right length of exposure into their lives After reading this I would look forward to readying other novels by Halle Butler


About the Author: Halle Butler

here you can find a pretty lazy selection of a few books i ve read still haven t gotten around to the pillowman.


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