PositiveThe Rumpus... in a book filled with such terse and intelligent writing, I feared...off-the-cuff virtue signaling would characterize the entirety of Dolan’s novel. Indeed, the book is populated by...quips meant to signal the protagonist’s own self-awareness. In an effort to capture millennial ennui, Dolan frequently takes a disaffected tone, holding her protagonist, and her leftist politics, at a distance. These performative one-liners notwithstanding, Dolan is at her best when she chooses to closely engage with questions of language, and the ways one’s linguistic identity is transformed when living as an expatriate ... Snarky exchanges...offer a wonderful, and necessary, respite from the neutral tone Ava often assumes ... Dolan’s work could benefit from a commitment to more intentionally exploring the ideological conflicts that make millennial relationships so messy and complex. Frequently, for example, I wished that Dolan would interrogate the question of Ava’s racial privilege, especially relative to Edith, with the same depth that she applies to the study of language ... Dolan’s greatest strength is her ability to capture the loneliness and perplexity of living as an expatriate ... a promising, if imperfect, update on the expat novel and quietly reminds us of everything this genre can be.