OOF: An Online Outrage Fiesta for the Ages

Fiction - Humor/Comedy
266 Pages
Reviewed on 04/05/2021
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Witherspoon’s first novel, furtl, was a 2014 Kirkus Reviews book of the year selection. The absurd near future of that novel became not-so-absurd one year later.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Risah Salazar for Readers' Favorite

Strobe Witherspoon writes a fictional memoir of a fictional former FLOTUS and it has become quite a controversy. Things get totally out of hand and to say that he has taken the heat for it is an understatement. Although there were a few intellectual takes about his latest work, most of the discourses that came about were just plain stupid. This is actually the premise of OOF, short for Online Outrage Fiesta: How can a satire, or any kind of content for that matter, elicit so many interpretations (some of which can be extremely out of context) and turn into a global nightmare when this wild mix of interpretations snowballs on the internet. Is this what has become of us as consumers of mass media? Is this what journalism has now evolved into?

Strobe Witherspoon's OOF is consistently intriguing. Informal, humorous, and sarcastic, its writing style will surely keep the audience devouring every page. At first, it was just about the FLOTUS' memoir, but it grows into something more, something deeper that makes this book a work of art. It's as clear as day what Witherspoon is trying to convey. Each story in this so-called compendium is interesting. The narrative's chronological order and delivery are nothing short of smart. He throws in a variety of articles, tweets, blog posts, podcast transcripts, email correspondences and so much more that makes this book realistic and relevant. This is not only about the comedic approach; this is a paradox that reveals a lot about humanity that will get people either laughing or shaking their heads because it's so true. Most importantly, this will get people thinking about our current state and how can we collectively do better, even with disagreeing opinions.

Vincent Dublado

Strobe Witherspoon’s Oof is more than just a satire. You know that you are in for a treat when an author makes fun of himself, as Witherspoon wears two hats as an inquisitor general and heretic at the same time. As narrated by his editor, Witherspoon has recently finished writing his autobiographical novel, FLOTUS: A Memoir about the life of the First Lady of The United States. The book sparks a bidding war, but it causes trouble when The New Journal obtains the preface to the book, where Witherspoon refers to an incident about a foiled attack on the president’s life that happened in real life, and the first lady’s role in this failed scheme. This triggers an Online Outrage Fiesta comprising diverse sources that will roast Witherspoon, who does not always adhere to the rules of civility and revels in his radical provocateur reputation.

Strobe Witherspoon has put a lot of information into his narrative, and you can guess that he had fun doing it. The real accomplishment is to compose a satire about one’s own profession and expose the bitter truths behind it. You see a celebrated author falling from grace as brought about by his penchant for stirring up a hornet’s nest and weakness in not swallowing his pride. Despite his flaws, you can also see what makes him a charmer, even to those who hate him; he does not care what other people think—a rare quality in a world where everyone is trying to please people they do not even like. Strobe’s narrating editor steps away from the ruckus but communicates the story with a direct and greater purpose by preserving the larger truths. This is the secret to what makes Oof tick.

Romuald Dzemo

OOF: A Novel by Strobe Witherspoon can be read as an Online Outrage Fiesta. In fact, that is what the title suggests. It is a meld of political satire, social commentary, and humor, and the protagonist bears the name of the author. The book begins with a short memoir of FLOTUS — a character that will be easily enjoyed by readers who are familiar with the former presidential couple. It morphs into a maze of media clippings and online posts that explore a variety of political topics, governance, characters, and controversies. And always in a tone that is humorous, light, and engaging. Strobe Witherspoon has written a book that is sold for almost a million dollars, a book about the miserable life of a former FLOTUS, but a leaked chapter brings forth a media rush that eventually puts his life under scrutiny and in jeopardy. But how does it end? It will be interesting to find out.

This book is unique in that it has no rules to follow when it comes to style — from fragmented, truculent sentences to surprising formats, OOF has it all. But that is purposeful, reflecting the mayhem that characterizes the social media world, especially in contemporary times where truth is measured by the number of clicks a post receives and not by the veracity of facts it communicates. It is the world that Strobe Witherspoon navigates and the similarities between this world that the author creates and the one inhabited by former POTUS and FLOTUS are interesting. The characters are well-developed, and readers will enjoy the views and opinions of Strobe Witherspoon, a self-proclaimed radical provocateur, who tries to get inside the head of a first lady who sounds strikingly similar to the last FLOTUS. They will be introduced to a FLOTUS who adored the smell of her husband, a man who is described as simple, always late, and “always canceling.”

OOF: A Novel is written in the form of media postings, conversations, and blog posts, a hilarious commentary on an experience most people know and the idiosyncrasies that have characterized the American social and political landscape, especially through the years of the last presidency. You will laugh a lot and think as you turn from page to page, hardly able to predict which piece is served next. It is a work of pure creative genius, engaging and thought-provoking.