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The Crack Magazine

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All Fours by Miranda July

I don’t know enough about Miranda July’s life to say how autobiographical ‘All Fours’ is, but I think it’s fair to say that the unnamed narrator of ‘All Fours’ has plenty in common with July, as, just like July, she has several fingers in several arty pies. Indeed when a hugely famous pop star gets in touch with the narrator, regarding working on a project together, she isn’t sure if this will involve directing a music video or film, working on a book, or something else entirely. The narrator is in her mid-40s and lives with her husband Harris and child Sam (who is never gendered throughout the narrative. The narrator uses they/them pronouns). When the narrator gets an unexpected windfall of $20,000 from an advertising company, she decides to use that money to drive across the US, spend a week seeing friends in New York, and then drive home. But when she checks into a cheap motel in a city not far from her home she meets Davey, a 20-something man who she develops passionate feelings for. Absurdly, she then spends the $20,000 on an interior designer who completely transforms her motel room into a haven of good taste. I loved July’s debut novel ‘The First Bad Man’ (2015) – which was funny and bizarre in equal measure – and while ‘All Fours’ doesn’t share that book’s WTF narrative pull, it is laugh out loud throughout (you WILL chortle at the words “tonka beans”), while also being very queer and very sexy and, ultimately, very moving. RM

Published by Cannongate