I am weirdly optimistic when it comes to books. I believe that they will get better which rarely is something I can do in real life. It keeps me reading. It makes it hard to DNF.
And I have never used the Audible refund policy for a book whether I like it or not.
So Out was a first in a lot of ways. It also brought my progress in the Asian Readathon to a screeching halt and indeed nearly derailed my reading!
This gets spoilery below!
I had high hopes for Out a seemingly well-regarded crime novel. So right away I was outside my comfort zone which also kept me reading cause I kept thinking well I don’t know this so maybe I’m missing something, maybe I should keep reading and expand my mind.
That’s just the trap I fall into sometimes.
So what I knew about Out going in was it’s about 4 down on your luck factory workers who conspire to cover-up a murder. Sounds good right?
The 4 women are mixed bags. Near the beginning you find out one is being abused and two of the others are literally like yeah, she deserves it. One of them thinks no wonder her lazy husband abuses her a hard-working beautiful wife can put a man like that down!
To which I thought…
But unlikable characters are not a thing for me. You like to tell yourself they will come together and learn. However the real problem was they aren’t the only point-of-views and the abusive husband who exits stage left fairly early well, you’re gonna miss him. There’s another factory worker who is dragging women into bushes and assaulting them during the night shift.
When he grabs one of the main four women her response is not to report him when she gets away but to tell him twice, “Go after the younger girls!”
Even he’s not as bad as the thirty-something loan shark sleeping with a teenage girl who thinks a lot about how any woman older than a teenager is not worth breath. But also gets pissed when said teenager doesn’t want to cook his breakfast and be his mommy.
But by far the worst for me was the gambling den owner whose greatest memory was of the woman he raped, tortured and murder. Which he has romanticized to such an extent in his head that he believes she was enjoying it and that it was so perfect he’s been impotent ever since.
Yeah it was gross.
But then you read on because you want these fuckers to get what’s coming to them across the board and you beat yourself up because you don’t really want to be reading this and you don’t even like any of the women… Finally about eight and a half hours in I gave up and looked up spoilers to see if there was indeed any learning of anything.
Let’s just say no on that or at least they definitely double down on the rape and just the character I don’t want to see anymore of. So I was happily able to give it up. But a half-read audible book in my library would drive me crazy so I sent it back and they returned my credit (which was nice cause I’ve had this book for a while) lots of people seem to like Out but it was deeply not for me.
Luckily Murderbot was around to keep me out of an Out induced slump 🙂
Recommend: No, I wouldn’t.
But if you are interested in a translated crime genre fiction- keep in mind the subject matter and the warnings for rape, assault, murder, etc. There’s also a gruesome body disposal… Yeah I don’t think the synopsis prepared me for any of it.
And yet somehow there’s a part of me that still feels a little guilty for not finishing. A small part but still 🙂