“The witches are coming, but not for your life. We’re coming for your lies. We’re coming for your legacy.”
Last year I read Lindy West’s memoir, Shrill, but didn’t review it because there were no words I could think of to describe how wonderful it was. I recently finished The Witches Are Coming and have similar feelings, but I’ll try my best to describe how wonderful this collection of essays is.
I’ve always been a fan of Lindy’s writing (even before reading Shrill), so it’s no surprise I fell in love with The Witches Are Coming, too. This collection is filled with her wit and charm, and trademark tone of calling out bullshit for what it is while still somehow finding humor in this hellscape we call home.
The book, as a whole, focuses on American politics, and analyzes popular culture to draw connections between how the 2016 American election turned out the way it did, and why there’s so much racism, misogamy, fear, hate, actual fake news, etc., floating around today. As a Canadian, I am somewhat removed from these American-specific examples, but they still hit close to home in a general sense.
She talks about everything from Adam Sandler movies (that did NOT age well) to our fascination with serial killers (which I know is weird but I’m still going to keep consuming true crime content), to the total absurdity that is Gwyneth Paltrow’s GOOP (please don’t put jade eggs up your vaginas, ladies!), to how abortions are totally normal and safe and FINE TO HAVE (this essay in particular made me cry), and more. With each topic, Lindy West eloquently points out issues that often get over-looked or left out of conversations—for example, the majority of women subscribing to GOOP are rich and wealthy—and inserts humor while doing so.
Her narrative is, as always, equal parts depressing and hopeful. This sounds weird, I know, but if you read any of her essays you’ll understand what I mean. Lindy’s writing always has the ability to make you realize just how messed up some things are, and get you riled up enough to put your emotions into creating positive change.
One of the essays in The Witches Are Coming is aptly titled “The World is Good and Worth Fighting For,” and I agree. Sure, everything feels terrible sometimes, but when the witches band together and fight back, we can create a better world to live in.
I’d recommend this book to anyone looking for new, feminist essays to read. Lindy’s style and tone is perfect when it comes to addressing politics, popular culture, and making the link between these topics accessible.
Thank you to the publisher for sending me an electronic copy of this book via NetGalley. The Witches Are Coming came out on November 5, 2019, and can be purchased wherever books are sold.