Little Children

I finished reading Little Children by Tom Perrota last night. It's been a busy week and instead of going to bed on time each night, I chose to pick up the novel and finish it in the hours I would have otherwise spent in deep slumber. I was oddly compelled by subject matter that I might have found somewhat commonplace (a novel about adultery) or unappealing (there's a child molester). I credit that to the writing style entirely, which could be criticized for its detached third-person stance but I thought it was somewhat honest - by detaching the reader from the characters by even that small degree, the reader could fully appreciate the reference to "little children," because most everyone is a child in this novel. This quote is from the article referring to the new movie based on the book:
We're all little children at heart, the film woefully concludes: running scared, crying for mommy. It's an infantile ending for such a studiously grown-up movie.
Well, fine, but I think the ending is purposefully doing that. We're ALL little children, the author included, who can't bring himself to execute a potentially horrifying ending that the reader almost expects. Perhaps I'm simply not quite at the right stage of life or I haven't experienced the demands a child can put on a person, but I barely identified or connected with any of the characters -- despite that, though I rather devoured the book and on the whole, I enjoyed it. Of course, I had Kate Winslet in my mind the whole time, knowing that she plays Sarah in the movie, so the next step is to watch that and compare.

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