Jennifer's Reviews > Mr. Fox

Mr. Fox by Helen Oyeyemi
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Jan 22, 12

Still puzzling through all the layers and hidden meanings of this book. Its about a writer named Mr. Fox, who's married to a woman named Daphne but who has an imaginary mistress/muse named Mary Foxe. It's very allegorical, and told in a non linear way; plus you're never entirely sure what's "real" and what's just a story, which makes sense because the book seems to be about the power of the written word to create reality. So the stories Mr. Fox (and Mary) write bleed in and out of reality, characters appear in different forms in both fictional and "real" contexts, and Mary herself starts to move beyond her imaginary construction. A big point that the book seems to be making is that when male writers create stories in which female characters are victimized and demonized, that this in effect constructs our impressions of women in the real world -- and even causes women to construct themselves in very scripted ways. Only 3 stars for me because at times I felt the postmodern construction of the book overwhelmed the novel -- back in grad school that might have been fine for me but now I'm looking for some emotional involvement in the novels I read, and this one felt too much like an academic exercise at times.
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