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mobi We Need to Talk About Kevin

read kindle ☆ We Need to Talk About Kevin Paperback ☆ moneyexpresscard Û The gripping international bestseller about motherhood gone awryEva never really wanted to be a mother and certainly not the mother of the unlovable boy who murdered seven of his fellow high school students a cafeteria workThe gripping international bestseller about motherhood gone awryEva never really wanted to be a mother and certainly not the mother of the unlovable boy who murdered seven of his fellow high school students a cafeteria worker and a much ador The pull uote on the cover of the edition I read suggests that it's impossible to put this book down That's almost entirely false Out of the book's 400 pages the first 300 were kind of like pulling teeth Creepy maternal teeth The last 100 pages however were actually and physically impossible to look away from and the brisk pace of the climax after so many pages of buildup actually created a really wonderful complete story that was very satisfying and which god help me made me cry out of a bizarre sense of happiness at the endThis book is a series of letters irritating written from a travel writer wife unsympathetic and irritating to her separated husband tiresome and given 20 seconds and a familiarity with Western literature leading up to an entirely transparent twist These letters start out being about her day to day life and a mediation on their slowly decimated marriage something I really can't relate to but soon they become All About Kevin Kevin being their oldest kid their son and who recently in 2000 shot up a bunch of his fellow high schoolers It's a post Columbine book set in pre 911 America and it's freakishly refreshing to read an entire novel about a national tragedy that neither mentions nor cares about terrorists threat levels Ira or What's Wrong With America?Actually it's vaguely framed around the Florida debacle in the 2000 presidential elections but that event is used to throw into relief how little political issues matter when your family has been destroyed For the most part the narrator Eva talks about Kevin why she decided to have him what it was like to raise him and examine the ways in which she failed as a mother and a wifeIt's weirdly inspiring I mean she is a bad mom Not beating the kids bad but neglectful cold self centeredshe is essentially the kind of woman who could only love a child if that was all she had left And so in a way she ends up raising a child who in a bid for her affection will take everything else away from her It's both sick and touching and a fascinating examination of how we're supposed to move on from tragedy how life continues no matter how much you wish it didn'tKevin himself is perfectly written both sympathetic and absolutely monstrous By the time he's 14 and terrorizing his mother behind his father's back I found myself completely unsurprised by everything as it unfolded Of course he ended up killing 11 people Of course he doesn't regret it Of course I'm not sure at what point if any decent parenting could have saved him and I like that Lionel Shriver managed to write a lengthy book without answering or even addressing that uestionWhat struck me as the most disturbing thing in the long run and what's stuck with me most is that the only thing that seems to scare the kid and the only thing that seems to at least begin to make him snap out of his narcissistic power trip is his impending transfer from juvie to the gen pop of a federal prison The book never gets into it but I found it deeply upsetting that the prison system is so horrible mass murderers are scared of it I kind of felt as if we're supposed to be happy that Kevin's actually scared but I mostly was just creeped out that the system itself had managed to create something even worse than Kevin

Lionel Shriver à We Need to Talk About Kevin reader

Ed teacher who tried to befriend him all two days before his sixteenth birthday Now two years later it is time for her to come to terms with marriage career family parenthood and Kevin's horrific rampage in a series of startlingly direct cor This book is just devastating and devastatingly good I've just finished it and had a little cry on the balcony in the bright sunshine thinking about my mom and motherhood and blame self recrimination guilt and remorse and parental love and the painfully ambiguous sometimes tortured complexity of it allAnd that is underselling itSuffice for now to say you might not enjoy this if You believe that a lack of maternal instinct or feeling is a character flaw or a moral failing; You come out soundly on the nurture either side of the naturenurture continuum; You believe parents always at some point and for most things need to be held accountable for their child's behaviour; You seek the anxiety uelling solace that pat sociological and psychological theories and labels offer post partum depression sociopathy unconditional positive regardThis novel should I hope blast through any of those preconceptions some of which at some times in my life I've believedShriver turns all of this on its ear and twists some literary and plot conventions to her own purposes at the same time She is steadfast and clear eyed in her determination to dismantle the 'blame the parents' catechism that passes for analysis and explanation of that which is inexplicable in this case a school shooting and the lives events and choices that led to it To do so she creates characters who are unlikeable sometimes deeply so but oh so human even Kevin Unless you're a sociopath which I think is one of her points you cannot help but empathize with each of them at times; hate them at others; give them the benefit of the doubt freuently too freuently perhaps which is anotherWhether or not you are a parent I am not you cannot help but feel that you've been given a rare insight into someone's worst nightmare because you have whatever angle you are viewing from and there is nowhere to go to depersonalize or escape itShriver sidles up to her characters cycling through the subjectivity of a first person narrative from a defense into a self flagellation into an exposition Though the jig was up half way through for me in terms of one of the last plot twists it didn't matter and didn't detract from the facility with which the author employed the epistolary style and the emotional punch it levelledEva's retrospective self analysis through a lens tinged by tragedy guilt and shame gives us a perspective into events and motivations both in hindsight and as they unfold retaining the immediacy and intensity that only a first person account can provide It happened but it is never past because the telling makes it happen in perpetuity which is exactly how trauma works Because of who she is Eva is able to present with alarming clarity that which is unambiguously evil and therefore that which remains ambiguous is doubly so Shriver does not let anyone off the hook these characters are so complex in their humanity and yet they are also Boomer upper middle class shallow which is never reduced to a cliche She also never fails to produce horror infused with the dark comedy to which only its victims or observers from a comfortable distance are entitled and we are neither from sometimes mundane domestic details an eviscerated 3 yr old's birthday cake An exotic pet a clogged drain and a shaver with an inordinately large amount of hair in it A glass eyed antiue doll given as a Christmas present Kevin's rampage like Shriver's prose is revealed in poetic detail I was sometimes shaking with anger while reading I would have smashed the water pistol a half dozen pages earlier yet when Eva finally did her remorse at her ink stained yellow shoe left the justification for the act coloured with her materialistic shallowness and hypocrisy This scene one of so many revealed character in a way that only an absolutely top notch novelist can ever produceHave I said? The writing is brilliant God is in the details in this novel in which every page needs probably to be read a dozen times not that I could bear it And there is substance to go with that style Eva's agoraphobic mother's offer to fly to her after Thursday reduced me to tears as one mother's unconditional love and courage reflected on the other's in a mirror or in relief? Hard to say There are no easy answers here for Eva or for us There is no clear truth or explanation why a matter on which all sides including the reader must against our human desire for explanation order out of chaos resolution reluctantly come to agree This review now is an incoherent ramble unlike Eva's self confessional bibliotherapeutic letters and the novel itself It is still a fresh wound for me and I will need to come back later when I've stanched the flow a bit

kindle ✓ We Need to Talk About Kevin à Lionel Shriver

We Need to Talk About KevinRespondences with her estranged husband Franklin Uneasy with the sacrifices and social demotion of motherhood from the start Eva fears that her alarming dislike for her own son may be responsible for driving him so nihilistically off the rai Immediate reaction after reading I’m so horrified that I feel sick and I’m nearly crying not because of Kevin but for Kevin and I don’t know who to blame any or what to feel or what to think I only know that this book is unlike anything I’ve ever read and in all likelihood will ever readHow can I so deeply love a book that is this agonisingly ugly?? Full review I knew before I started that reading this was going to be hard We Need to Talk about Kevin is listed as one of the most disturbing books on GR So in an attempt to limit the coming agony I made a few rulesRULE 1 Do not get emotionally involvedRULE 2 Do not take sidesRULE 3 Do not dwell on the disturbing partsA hundred pages later when I put the book down and went to bed only to replay and obsess over Eva’s commentary in my head I realised my rules were long brokenI got emotionally involved I always do I wish I could say that Eva's so horrible that I couldn't relate to her but a teeny tiny part of me did especially at the start Crying babies terrify me and I’ve always harboured a lot of reservations about having kids I’m not saying I never want to have kids; that would be a stupid thing to say considering I wasn’t even an adult four years ago But I’m the kind of girl who gets a panic attack when she's asked to babysit her hyperactive nephewsI took sides Right from the start I unconsciously sided with Eva True the way she thought of her son repulsed me at times but I felt Kevin’s actions were repulsive For me Kevin was uintessentially evil and Eva was the poor woman who had the misfortune of bearing him The fact that she didn’t want to have him in the first place just seemed to make her of a victimAs for not dwelling on the disturbing partswell there are NO PARTS The book in entirety is a systematically harrowing tale with no escape The only way to skip the distress would be to stop reading the book itself and while that thought did cross my mind the bibliophile in me couldn’t stay away So I persisted I bore the mental anguish I let Eva’s commentary drill into my brainAnd that's my answer to why I love this ugly ugly book It caused me to recoil in horror so many times but also made me come back to it every single time Every minute I was reading I wanted to stop; yet when I put the book down I wanted to pick it up again Like being addicted to something unpleasant and craving it even when that voice in your head begs you not toThis is an uncharacteristically long review but there’s one last thing I want to add This book left me with a uestion that’s bothered me for days Like I said I’ve always been on Eva’s side but the last 4 pages made me reconsider I mean whatever Kevin did is inexcusable and gruesome and I still feel for Eva but who’s the culprit and who’s the victim? What’s the cause and what’s the effect?Is Eva such a cold mother because Kevin is who he is? Or did Kevin become who he is because Eva is such a cold mother?In the end who do we really need to talk about? Kevin? Or Eva?I’ve ruminated over this uestion for days but I feel it’s best to leave it unanswered Because whatever the truth may be it’s bound to be hideous “It must be possible to earn a devotion by testing an antagonism to its very limit to bring people closer through the very act of pushing them away Because after three days short of eighteen years I can finally announce that I am too exhausted and too confused and too lonely to keep fighting and if only out of desperation or even laziness I love my son”