The Ice Storm Review

Author: Rick Moody.

Publisher: Abacus.

Published: 1994.

Rating: 6/10.


How does one even begin to explain The Ice Storm (1994)? Let me take you back to 70’s America, where neighbourhood cocktail parties were still a thing and the Sexual Revolution was in full swing. And boy there’s a lot of sex in this book, and none of it very good. Batten down the hatches, cause there’s a storm a’coming (get it?). 

The novel follows a cast of largely unlikable characters over the course of a weekend during a massive snow storm. Mr & Mrs Hood attend a social gathering at one of their neighbour’s houses where they get to meet with all the other desperate suburban adults. The night involves affairs, awkward social interactions, and proclamations of how sad their lives are, from their vapid personalities to feelings of emasculation. 

While this is happening, the teenagers of the neighbourhood sneak out of their houses and wander around to find something to do, like underage drinking or sexual exploration with each other (or themselves). 

The Ice Storm (1994) investigates the destructive interior of the suburban landscape from crumbling marriages to decaying houses, and also examines the waning sexualities of the adults, from impotence to masturbation. It was difficult at times to engage with because of the unlikable characters, but maybe that’s the point. 

 

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