Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Eat My Heart Out” as Want to Read:
Eat My Heart Out
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Eat My Heart Out

2.75  ·  Rating details ·  436 ratings  ·  66 reviews
Meet 2014's most outrageous, funny and shocking anti-heroine: Ann-Marie. She's 23, her life has collapsed, and she's blaming everyone but herself. Heartbroken, skint and furious, she's convinced that love - sweet love! - is the answer to all of her problems, until she meets legendary feminist Stephanie Haight, a woman who could be her saviour - or her final undoing.

From ne
Paperback, 304 pages
Published February 5th 2014 by Serpent's Tail (first published December 19th 2013)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Eat My Heart Out, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Eat My Heart Out

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
2.75  · 
Rating details
 ·  436 ratings  ·  66 reviews

Sort order
Jessica Malice
Apr 28, 2014 rated it liked it
I hated this book but read it really fast. I don't know what's wrong with me. I'm filled with rage and quickened. Fuck this book. I don't even know.
[2.5] As with The Dinner by Herman Koch, I'm not sure that a satirical novel about highly disturbed characters is a good way to critique complex social and media trends and their possible effects. Because, uh, these things simply don't make most people behave that way. And when they do contribute in some individuals, there are also all kinds of other things involved: upbringing, epigenetics and miscellaneous (socio-)environmental factors peculiar to that person's life.

Eat My Heart Out has had a
Nov 24, 2013 marked it as attempted
Can't deal with this sort of book in which characters talk and think and act nothing like real people. I know it's meant to be satire, but... ugh. Feels like the most annoying bits of How Should a Person Be? except a thousand times worse.
Mar 03, 2014 rated it really liked it
Beginning in a literal meat-market, before careering its way through Soho restaurants, Cambridge colleges and East London pop-up galleries, Zoe Pilger’s debut novel is a savage and exhilarating read, managing to parody the conventions of romantic comedy whilst also providing an abrasive commentary on the politics of post-feminism, through the eyes of the protagonist, Anne-Marie.

Ann-Marie is directionless since dropping out of university. Her romantic life has been shattered by the revelation tha
Kristi Sawyer
This 'perfectly pitched satire' was totally wasted on me...I just didn't get it! It was recklessly odd with no real coherent messages that I could relate to.
Jul 12, 2014 marked it as unfinished  ·  review of another edition
Every time I sit down to read this, I glance at the front cover decorated with reviews like 'super-smart', perfectly pitched satire' and 'very funny'; and for a few more pages, I am spurred on. Unfortunately, the one thing that is stopping me from reading this book, is the book itself. Satire or not, it's really quite irritating, so I think I'm going to have to shelve it for the time being.
Vienna Famous
Apr 18, 2014 rated it really liked it
I finally found a book that does what I want to do and it was...underwhelming. The first half promised so much, a headlong plunge into the melee of London's art scene through the eyes of a headstrong but foolish art student. The book utilises a deceptively light farcical tone to grapple with the big ideas of the moment (fourth wave feminism, gentrification, how the hell we can all live well in this post-moral world). But two thirds of the way in I stopped caring enough to make sense of the incre ...more
Ian Mapp
Jan 31, 2014 rated it it was ok
Quite an interesting book - bursting with ideas and a little bit of humour.

If only we had some sort of story to piece it all together.

Nothing happens to the character - a 23 year old woman, picking her way through 21st Century life in London.

She sleeps with unsuitable men, she goes to pop up restaurants, she has no money. She stumbles from one situation to the next.

And thats the problem - despite the fierce intelligence and passion of the author - there is no narrative arc.

The last 100 pages go
Jul 06, 2015 rated it liked it
Can't decide if this book was brilliant or fucked up; probably both. It did keep me turning the pages, mostly in a rubber-neck kind of way. The characters, especially the female protagonist, wereunlikeable, cruel, and really just not believable as real people. You really have to suspend reality to read this book. I do realize this book is satirical, a commentary on the clash between 2nd wave and 3rd or 4th wave feminism. It did cause me to examine where I myself fall in terms of my feminist iden ...more
Jan 08, 2016 rated it did not like it
It was almost painful to finish this book. It's like having a conversation with your friend, if she was coked out and telling a rambling story that never really goes anywhere. It sometimes reminded me of Glamorama, but without charm or a storyline that went anywhere. If you're currently reading it, waiting for it to get better, do yourself a favor and stop now.
Kaiva Koenig
Absolute fucking garbage.

I'm not even going to apologize for that. Sorry, I'm not sorry. The blurb calls this a feminist novel? Feminazi, you mean. And no, not the good kind.

LOL no.

The main character is a weak-willed young woman who sways from one thing to the next, not knowing what to do with her life. She is dominated by everyone. She is dominated by another woman, an older woman who is bat-shit crazy, abusive and controlling. This woman takes her in and becomes her mentor (or, mentrix). She f
Apr 11, 2015 rated it did not like it
This is the first time I have read a book by Zoe. It was awful, confusing, annoying and I could not wait to finish it. I can see what she was trying to aim for but I think imagination took one step further. I have never felt so annoyed by one book.... Such a waste of time and money
Elle Shoel
Jul 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Virginia Woolf on MDMA. Exceptional.
Sep 07, 2016 rated it it was ok
Read this book at the beach on vacation. It didn't make much sense to me. Maybe I didn't catch enough references? No idea why I finished it, I can't even describe what it's about.
David Brook
Jan 12, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2014
It's good, but frustrating in parts - this is down to the character, not the writing. The writing is sublime.
Hana H.
Jul 13, 2015 rated it it was ok
10% insightful, 90% ew.
Sep 24, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: modern-fiction
I nearly gave up with this about a third of the way through, but on balance, I'm glad I persevered with it. The focus was too much on the satire than the plot for my liking, but it did have its moments, even if they weren't as hilarious as suggested by the well known newspaper reviewers and random blogs cited on the inside cover.

The plot, so much as there is one, is that a Cambridge educated Londoner who failed her finals seems to lack direction and is not over her childhood sweetheart, and meet
May 21, 2018 rated it it was ok
The main character Zoe is at first a pleasant and thrilling person to follow. The way she thinks and behaves is comforting in her weirdness. But as the book progresses it becomes clear that she is just a lost fucked up girl who needs to get her shit together. An excess of characters and weird scenes quickly had me wishing I hadn’t started reading this book, but in case the author were to salvage it somehow I had to finish! I’m not a typically orthodox person, it isn’t the crudeness or odd compon ...more
Feb 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
This isn’t an “easy” book. Set up like a standard chick-lit fare of a girl unlucky in love trying to find herself and a suitable man, this book drops into a rabbit hole that it never escapes from.

It’s been awhile since I’ve read a novel critically, with an eye toward theory and not just enjoyment. I was up for the challenge and glad I did. A true satire of post-feminism, privileged youth and inter-generational conflict (not to mention the art scene, which I’m not near as familiar with), this bo
Sep 22, 2018 rated it did not like it
Shelves: september-2018
Pilger left me frustrated, repulsed and inherently prickly. I was put off from the start, but I stuck with it out of stubbornness and hope. I was left bitterly disappointed and questioning why I even bothered in the first place.
Kristyn Potter
Feb 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
amazing book. hilarious, page turner, absolutely perfect for a millennial woman trying to make sense of life/dating in present society.
Laura Lyn-kew
Mar 13, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
The most bizarre book I've ever read, not really sure why I finished it. Not one likeable character or plot line.
Oct 07, 2017 rated it did not like it
I finished this in 35 minutes. I would like those 35 minutes back. Just, no.
James Barron
Oct 15, 2014 rated it really liked it
This is a glib satire on pop-cultural tropes and figures of femininity and feminism, largely set within the milieu of London’s arts & media scene. An exquisite corpse of cultural theory and dead-white-man philosophy that steers animosity for precarious personal relationships and contemporary references to 50 Shades of Grey, or Amy Winehouse and Beyonce’s brands to place the novel. Ann-Marie is a kind of Jessa from HBO’s Girls, had she gone to Cambridge. Plenty of rolled-eyes smirks and giggl ...more
Angela Clarke
Nov 19, 2015 rated it really liked it
This book was recommended too me by Isabel Costello following a hibiscus margarita and a conversation about female satirists.

Eat My Heart Out is a satire of our narcissistic, hedonistic, post-post-feminist world. It centres upon Ann-Marie an anti-heroine in her early twenties who, after suffering a mental breakdown and walking out of her finals at Cambridge, is trying to find her way in the world in London.

Ann-Marie’s voice is startling and unique. Her journey allows Pilger to lampoon a whole ho
Apr 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Zoe Pilger’s debut novel, Eat My Heart Out, is a much-needed critique of the fast-paced, irreverent, post-feminist millennial culture of the twenty-first century. The novel’s protagonist, Ann-Marie, is a 23-year-old Cambridge graduate whose life has fallen out from under her and she sees everyone and everything but herself as the cause. She’s at times cloyingly romantic and convinced that love is the answer to her problems, but characteristic to her psychosis, she tries to find love in a pervers ...more
Okay, I totally judged the book by the cover. "Satire", "Wild", "Hipster Bridge Jones". It seemed straight up my alley.

Nah, dude. She's not wild, she's bad-crazy. She's only a hipster by virtue of the fact that she lives in London. I'm remembering that Bridget Jones actually had a career, and Ann-Marie blamed her entire life on her breakup. She manipulates everyone around her, and just sounded like a detestable, pitiable person.

For a window into a generation, this was actually more than a little
Jan 30, 2014 rated it really liked it
Women behaving badly
In this darkly comic, post-feminist satire on women behaving badly, Pilger uses deliberately offensive and cringe-worthy scenes to show how so-called 'empowered', yet self-harming female media icons make it difficult for girls to find positive role models, leaving them caught between the housewife and the whore. Ignore the misleading cover illustration, this is not a tale of SM eroticism, but a hard hitting antidote to saccharine chick lit.

Reviewed on
Laura Bakker
May 06, 2016 rated it did not like it
Shelves: read-in-2016
I bought this book in a wimp because it was half-priced, but really I should've looked more into it when I bought it.

This book in my opinion was horrible. While reading this I did some research on other people's opinions on this book, and I came to find out that I'm not the only one who is disliking this so, so much. I found the characters annoying and the story went from bump to buzz. I didn't get the whole point and I didn't enjoy my time reading this at all.

Steven Pilling
Jul 12, 2014 rated it liked it

Things i am not ...

a woman
aged between 20 - 30

if i were i think i would have loved this. The writing is crisp , even from my 47 year old perspective its funny in sections, its almost a polemic. I juast felt too divorced from the subject matter to really engage. I would say though Pilger can write , it does resemble early Marin Amis but is better. i would urge everyone to read it and im sure most people wil get more from it then i did.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Yawn: Adventures in Boredom
  • Practicalities
  • Approaching Eye Level
  • Killer on the Road: Violence and the American Interstate
  • The Understory
  • The Selected Letters
  • Unmastered: A Book on Desire, Most Difficult to Tell
  • All the Time in the World: A Book of Hours
  • Ban en Banlieue
  • Confessions of a Recovering Slut: And Other Love Stories
  • Live Alone and Like It
  • All We Know: Three Lives
  • My 1980s and Other Essays
  • The Suicide of Claire Bishop
  • Swimming Underground: My Years in the Warhol Factory
  • The Nawal El Saadawi Reader
  • Things I Can't Explain
  • The Nutshell Studies of Unexplained Death
“It must have been a curse because it meant my heart didn't belong to myself. It belonged to someone other than myself. It belonged to him.” 0 likes
More quotes…