... recalls elements of weird Suburban melodrama with a biting feminist urgency of disassociated subject, as if from the perspective of an automatized and menacing wife. The narrator uses the first person plural, and moves through the desire and motions of a love affair with a striking (and relatable) sense of spectatorship. This disconnect is a chilling trick, and which reminded me of Cris Mazza’s enduring look at the way distrust of sex is vilified in mainstream culture through work like Something Wrong with Her and Is it Sexual Harassment Yet? And it makes for a fresh and compelling treatment of familiar themes ... It’s sexy to read about a desire that’s deferred through fragmented subjectivity ... Ryckman’s prose is spare, occasionally moving into ironic detachment, and deadpan commentary ... Ryckman delivers a virtuoso study in erotics: alluring, heavy throated, and weirdly sad.
Ryckman’s thickly lyrical language declines to commit to being either poetry or prose ... Ryckman’s use of plural pronouns is distinctive ... a meditation on social performance and the impossibility of presenting yourself in a singular role...This tactic of her survival unwittingly offers a way forward in a chaotic world.
Ryckman writes with cool, tightly packed precision on the futile ways people try to fill the emptiness and absence of life with objects and religion and desperate acts. Her rendering of the dynamics of an affair, which is so often an attempt to escape oneself, is especially keen ... A hypnotizing, bleak account of the ways people trap themselves in their own minds.