Mood Swings By Frankie Barnet

Mood Swings

A Novel

ISBN: 9781662602580


Published by (2024-05-21)

"Yes, “Mood Swings” is a novel about tech moguls and the collapse of society. Yes, maybe it’s an “internet novel.” But it’s also so much more than that. And isn’t that lovely, to find a book that transcends its buzzwords? Isn’t it beautiful for a work of art to prove you wrong?" Sarah Rose Etter, The New York Times Book Review

*"For fans of Patricia Lockwood’s No One Is Talking About This (2021). An off-kilter, hauntingly hilarious debut novel." —Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

"[A] bonkers story . . . Despite the sobering material, this is a hoot." —Publishers Weekly

In a pre-apocalyptic world not unlike our own, a young Instagram poet starts an affair with a California billionaire who's promised a time machine that will make everything normal again—whatever that means.

Everyone knows something’s off, but nobody can agree on just what it is. Maybe it’s the weather; maybe everyone’s just so damn sensitive these days. Or maybe it’s because the animals of the world have finally had enough, besieging towns and cities and terrorizing their human residents.

Jenlena and her best friend Daphne are two humanities grads in their early 20s, trying to find their way in a society that has just eradicated all animals for the safety of humanity. In the post-fauna world, Jenlena transforms from an aspiring poet to a gig worker, capitalizing on other people’s grief by selling house plants that have come to replace pets and cosplaying as dogs for pay. Meanwhile Daphne, a once-promising student, flounders in a deep depression, smoking weed and ditching work to hang out with her once famous, now canceled boyfriend. When Jenlena meets the California billionaire Roderick Maeve, and the two become romantically entangled, she is exposed to a new understanding of wealth, power, and the gender economy—just as the world hurtles toward its alleged salvation.

Marked with Frankie Barnet’s poignant intelligence and sly sense of humor, Mood Swings is a stand-out debut novel that imagines with pitch-perfect absurdity what comes after life as we know it.

Book Details

Format: eBook
Price: 15.99 USD
Published: 2024-05-21
ISBN: 9781662602580
Page Count: 304
Trim Size: 5-1/2 x 8-1/4

"Mood Swings is a master class in maximalism . . . The magic here is in the prose. Though the story itself is sprawling, Barnet’s writing is restrained and intentional. Moments that could turn saccharine are made meaningful by astute, almost insulting observations."
Sarah Rose Etter, The New York Times Book Review

"Barnet presents a canny portrait of the doomscroll generation, set in an absurdist near-future world . . . This is a sharp satire of a hyperonline culture, with genuinely moving insights into modern inequality and climate crisis throughout . . . This book is a great choice for fans of Patricia Lockwood’s No One Is Talking About This (2021). An off-kilter, hauntingly hilarious debut novel."
Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

"A clever trick mirror for the 'extremely online,' Mood Swings deserves its devotees."
Lauren Puckett-Pope, Elle

"[A] clever debut novel . . . a uniquely modern love story."
Layla Halabian, NYLON

"[A] delightful debut novel . . . Ridiculously funny and as smart as satires come, Mood Swings is a pitch-perfect Instagram novel attuned for the modern age."
Sam Franzini, Our Culture

"For a novel that doesn’t feature a single paradox, time loop, or change to history, Mood Swings offers up an incisive critique of time-travel narratives . . . [A] darkly satirical novel."
Ian Mond, Locus

"[A] bonkers story . . . Despite the sobering material, this is a hoot."
Publishers Weekly

"There is a lot in this novel that should feel deeply strange . . . And yet, this surreal world full of tech oligarchs and unmoored 20-somethings feels all too close to home, as if we’re looking at our current reality through a funhouse mirror."
Bustle, "Most Anticipated" Book of Spring 2024

"Frankie Barnet's propulsive, wholly original novel probes our dark preoccupations and our sources of hope in a seemingly hopeless world. Whether digging into the consequences of climate change, the allure of tech billionaires, the repercussions of cancel culture, or the love/hate dynamics of intimate relationships, Barnet's singular voice is dazzling and unexpected. She has that rare ability to be at once poignant and genuinely fun, moving and totally hilarious. This book cracked my brain open in the best way possible—I'm obsessed and want everyone to read it!"
Alexandra Chang, author of Days of Distraction

"What a wild ride—Frankie Barnet has written a fast, funny, witty, chilling first novel that, while ostensibly about a future or alternative reality, summons up the feeling of living in this reality with startling acuity." 
George Saunders, Booker Prize-winning author of Lincoln in the Bardo

"Mood Swings is a book of vicious wit and glittering, feral prose that lingers like a strange dream. Frankie Barnet possesses an enviable agility with language, zipping between characters with the jubilant chaos of a tilt-a-whirl and unspooling a deceptively devastating meditation on power, morality, and the end of the world. I couldn't stop reading once I started, and I can't stop talking about it now that I've finished. You'll want to hold its beating heart to yours; you'll want to keep it as a pet."
Aiden Arata, artist and writer