Nostalgia Has Ruined My Life

Zarah Butcher-Mcgunnigle

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‘From the discomfort of my own home I buy dresses, look up recipes, do online surveys.’ In Nostalgia Has Ruined My Life, an unnamed young woman in her late twenties navigates unemployment, boredom, chronic illness and online dating. Her activities are banal – applying for jobs, looking up horoscopes, managing depression, going on Tinder dates. ‘I want to tell someone I love them but there is no one to tell,’ she says. ‘Except my sister maybe. I want to pick blackberries on a farm and then die.’ She observes the ambiguities of social interactions, the absurd intimacies of sex and the indignity of everyday events, with a skepticism about the possibility of genuine emotion, or enlightenment. Like life, things are just unfolding, and sometimes, like life, they don’t actually get better. Zarah Butcher-McGunnigle’s novella-in-fragments blends artifice with sincerity, is darkly funny, and alive to the incongruous performance that constitutes getting by.

This book is for anyone who feels they are waiting for life to begin. I’ve never read anything else like it. Butcher-McGunnigle is compulsively readable, hilarious, wonderful – a master of the whiplash turn, the dark plunge, and thrillingly, unapologetically negative energy.

Ashleigh Young

$25

In stock

ISBN – 9781925818772
Publisher – Giramondo Publishing Company
Format – Paperback
Publication Date – 01/08/2021
Dimensions – 210mm X 148mm
Categories – Fiction and Poetry

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Autobiography of a Marguerite is an innovative autobiography about illness, family dysfunction, and identity, and how they can shape one another. The narrator struggles with the effects of her auto-immune illness, and struggles to separate herself from her troubled mother. The narrative that emerges from the connected prose poems is both revealing and mysterious. Fragmentation, non-linearity and the use of footnotes reflect the disruptive nature of illness and the nature of recalling memories and family patterns.

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