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Review of My First Book by Honor Levy

This is a deliciously chaotic collection of short stories that capture the essence of the internet generation. Honor Levy’s narrative style is experimental, sometimes stream-of-consciousness, sprinkled with memes, slang and niche cultural references. If you’re not chronically online, a lot of this will be lost on you. It’s hard to draw the line here between irony and sincerity but I suspect that’s the point as this collection acts as a mirror to a modern world in which we’ve become so obsessed with ‘culture’ and mockery that now everything is a joke.

All of the characters in this book are grappling with political, existential, moral and romantic struggles. I think my favourites were Cancel Me and the opening Love Story

Honor Levy is a writer who has had her work previously published in The New Yorker and I can definitely see her work as being shaped by the style of literary magazines. My only criticism (if it is one) is that, because of this, I felt a little tired of the style when reading this book as a whole. The stories become somewhat blurry. I would recommend taking your time with this collection, reading it one story at a time. It’s not one to be rushed and definitely an acquired taste.

Reviewed by Abi.

My First Book was published on 23/05/24 by Granta Books.


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