RaveNew York Times Book Review\"My Year of Rest and Relaxation, Moshfegh’s darkly comic and ultimately profound new novel, also concerns itself with a miserable woman in her mid-20s seeking \'great transformation\' ... In My Year of Rest and Relaxation, the relationship between Reva and the narrator is reminiscent of Bergman’s 1966 film Persona, in which a stage actress suffers a breakdown and becomes mute. She’s tended to by Alma ... In Persona the two at first seemingly opposite women begin to meld...similarly, as Moshfegh’s novel progresses, Reva and the narrator, at first strikingly different, increasingly resemble each other ... Surfaces are important in My Year of Rest and Relaxation. The narrator recalls her mother, a vain and distracted bedroom drunk ... By the end of her self-imprisonment, a transformation does occur ... It’s her own desire to be an artist that has been reborn ... Moshfegh’s extraordinary prose soars as it captures her character’s re-engagement ... \'Step away,\' a guard reprimands her when she gets too close to a painting. She does not step back. Instead, she puts her hand out and touches the frame of the painting. Then she places her whole palm on the surface of the canvas. The guard grips her shoulders, but after she explains that she got dizzy, the guard lets her go, and she is free.\
Herta Müller, Trans. by Peter Boehm
RaveThe New York Times Book Review[T]he first 50 pages are slow going, and some of the lighter-hearted anecdotes can at first seem tangential to the plot. But eventually, when the collage is completed, the reader understands that each and every one of Müller’s stories, every flight of luscious language and every brutal fact, has been necessary in depicting a society torn to pieces and tasked, with the curtains finally open and the light streaming in, with putting those pieces back together to make sense of it all.