Friday, August 15, 2014 |
We Need to Talk About Kevin was Lionel Shriver's breakout novel. Tackling the difficult topic of what it means to be the mother of a school shooter, We Need to Talk About Kevin won the Orange Prize for Fiction (now the Baileys' Prize) in 2005 and was adapted into a film starring Tilda Swinton in 2011.
Brian Francis, author of Fruit and Natural Order, thinks people who enjoyed this book will also like The Last of the Crazy People by Timothy Findley. He was on CBC Radio's The Next Chapter to explain why:
Why We Need to Talk About Kevin is a compelling read:
"It is not just about a mother who comes to terms with the fact that her son commits this horrific crime. It is also about a mother who struggles to be a mother. It's a role she didn't want and is still coming to terms with that. So there are two stories happening. That's what makes the book so compelling. You cannot put this book down. Lionel Shriver has done such a great job with the build-up and the tensions and the issues and the relationships. It's a fantastic, fantastic book."
Why We Need to Talk About Kevin fans will love The Last of the Crazy People:
"The Last of the Crazy People is also a story about a child who commits a horrific crime at the end against his own family. It's not revealed until the end what the crime is. The book is also dealing with a mother character who does not want to be a mother. She barricades herself in her room, she's had a miscarriage, and she's at the end of her rope in this role of motherhood, which is a role she didn't really want in the first place. There's no redemption. There's no sense of a happy ending, which is also true for Lionel Shriver's book."
Brian Francis' comments have been condensed and edited.
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