Current Issue #488

Book Review:

US novelist Jenny Offill returns with a poignant – and timely – new work.

Jenny Offill’s Dept. of Speculation (2014) – a treatise on the impact of becoming a parent, on marriage and the work of an artist – set itself apart from others in the 2010’s autofiction trend (Rachel Cusk’s Outline and Sheila Heti’s Motherhood among them) through its taut but highly affecting prose. 

In Weather Offill again demands every word show its importance. Through stark vignettes we return to the domestic scene: a mother and wife has relinquished creative ambitions for structure. There are still myriad distractions, however, and it is here that the reader joins Offill in questioning what we can do in spite of the climate, politics, and all forms of sin. 

Beautifully composed fiction that is contemporary in both its execution and subject matter, Weather is astute, poignant, stunning. 

Author: Jenny Offill
Publisher: Allen & Unwin 

Kylie Maslen

See Profile

Kylie Maslen is a writer and critic from Kaurna/Adelaide, and the author of Show Me Where it Hurts: Living with Invisible Illness (Text Publishing).

Get the latest from The Adelaide Review in your inbox

Get the latest from The Adelaide Review in your inbox