Criminal Elements

Before and After

by Rosellen Brown

Black Dogs

by Ian McEwan
Rosellen Brown’s recent novel, Before and After, and Ian McEwan’s Black Dogs both explore the effects of an act of unfathomable violence on a family. Though Before and After centers on a murder, it is, more than a reconstruction of events, a psychological analysis of the impact of those events …

Child’s Play

Hideous Kinky

by Esther Freud
Hideous Kinky begins as a small, cheerful, autobiographical novel following the Thurber variation on Wordsworth: “Humor is emotional chaos recollected in tranquillity.” In the mid-Sixties two girls, aged five and seven, travel with their mother from London, where “there were a lot of people waiting to be given mantras,” to …