Though the collection’s scenarios could be dismissed as familiar tropes, Braverman brings sagacious insight to them. Her mind, a fecund breeding ground of creativity, can take a cliche such as 'a wife leaves her husband' and spin it, often with a clever turn of phrase, into something like a short masterpiece ... Moving through the eight stories in the book, one is greatly impressed by Braverman’s ability to recontextualize themes of estrangement, substance abuse, and fractured familial relationships through her unique prose style. Page after page of the collection is filled with lyrical imagery that veers toward the cinematic ... Braverman shines a light on our most intimate relationships. It is a bracing reminder of how uniquely powerful of a writer Braverman is.
Crammed with feverish, hallucinatory imagery...these are gynocentric tales of angsty adolescent girls, anomic wives, adult women with difficult mothers, and elderly women with lost daughters. Braverman’s feminism can be hot and oleaginous, like the burning oil of medieval punishment ... But elsewhere the book’s politics, gender or otherwise, seem threaded with a gentle mysticism. Abandoned by any force resembling a plot, women stand, in meadows or on beaches, and tilt their faces upward ... With that elevation comes a poetic correlative: images before ideas, lush language before shaped story lines ... This is the over-saturated, psychedelic, sensual thrust of Braverman’s heightened prose ... Of course, the aesthetic of the high, of the sugar rush, can grow monotonous when not relieved by more complex sensations—the type of responses provoked by, say, fully fleshed out characters, or a deep sensitivity to time and place. Seppuku is not, as a rule, good for you, even if it happens to be a good day for it ... One lesson of this author’s career is that she is as unbeholden to the moment as the moment is to her. The day’s preferences aside, she knows how to drive in the knife.
A strength of the collection is Braverman’s transportive descriptions. She crafts detailed scenes anchoring us to the place. This vividness of scene emerges throughout the collection providing a seemingly tangible moment to connect us ... The precision of the prose shows fine and meticulous editing ... The effect can feel dry, but interspersing various paces imparts some energy. She often employs a staccato rhythm to speed things up, shooting a blast of energy into the text ... With A Good Day for Seppuku, Braverman has written a collection of intense images and exacting language. She’s sliced through privileged suburbia to show us a delicious cross-section of the troubles of the elites, and shows how even with money, many women end up struggling to find their own place in the world.