Women's Prize Longlist 2019 Reviews

Women’s Prize Longlist Review – The Pisces

The Pisces


Publisher: Bloomsbury

Format: Hardback 

Pages: 270

Rating: 2/5


The Pisces is about a thirty-eight year old woman named Lucy, who struggles with boundaries when it comes to love and sex, and finds solace in a mythical creature on the rocks of Venice beach outside her sister’s house. Is this the love she has been desperately searching for, or is she deluding herself again? 

Firstly, I have to say that Lucy is one of the most selfish, least understanding characters I have ever read and a few times I was tempted to throw the book across the room as a result of something she said or did. She is an abusive girlfriend, suggesting breaking up with her boyfriend, and then breaking his nose when he attempts to move on. I found it difficult to finish this novel, because of how unbearably unlikable the main character was. 

I found the number of sex scenes to be absurd and felt it was sex for sex’s sake, and that the author was relying too much on the shock factor e.g. the menstrual blood scene and the scene where Lucy prepares for anal sex for the first time. 

Furthermore, I felt the plot was wholly predictable, I saw what would happen in each and every case, leaving me feeling somewhat bored. The animal cruelty made me feel incredibly uncomfortable and appeared to be another inclusion of the shock factor. The writing didn’t make up for the disappointing plot, so it was an all round below average read for me. 

I am seeing a number of positive reviews for this book, so I’m sure that it would be for some of you. However, based on how strongly I feel about it, I cannot recommend it. The only reason I have given it two stars instead of one, is because it has provoked such a strong reaction in me. 

If you read this book and enjoyed it, please let me know what it is about it that you enjoyed, so I can at least attempt to understand. 

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