Dept. of Speculation by Jennny Offill


If you’ve ever experienced infidelity, bedbugs, motherhood, or feel like your brain goes from one random thought to another… Dept. of Speculation by Jenny Offill is for you.  Written from the perspective of “the wife” it’s a post of random thoughts and famous quotes.  It sounds disjointed but it flows together perfectly.  A few examples of why I loved this book.

On motherhood- Someone gives the wife’s daughter a doctor kit.  “Would you like to be a doctor when you grow up?” I ask her.  She looks at me oddly.  “I’m already a doctor.” and “We have been there once before, when she stuck a plastic jewel up her nose by accident.”

On bedbugs – “Neither my husband nor I can stand to keep secrets, but we keep this one, yes, keep it.”  The irony of this quote is revealed soon after.

On infidelity – “The husband doesn’t have even a touch of this raised-by-wolvesness.  But the girl does, she bets.  Something in her past that makes her want to tear things to shreds.”

It’s also about teaching college students, ghost writing, general discontent and hope.