Oates is often an artist of extremes. When it works it really, really works. When it doesn’t it can feel like there’s something manipulative going on, and something that feels too close to exploitation in her obsession with human degradation. I wavered throughout this book. The Satanic motorcycle gang feels cheap and obvious, and the resolution was too quick to be genuine. On the other hand, I found the writing compelling, and i care in the end about the lives of Ingrid and her mother, made crazy by the world of violent or inadequate men that they love or think they love.