We Need to Talk About Kevin: A Novel

Front Cover
Harper Collins, May 1, 2004 - Fiction - 416 pages
184 Reviews
The gripping international bestseller about motherhood gone awry Eva never really wanted to be a motherand certainly not the mother of the unlovable boy who murdered seven of his fellow high school students, a cafeteria worker, and a much-adored 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 correspondences with her estranged husband, Franklyn. 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 rails.
  

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5 stars
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4 stars
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3 stars
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As a parent is is hard to read. - LibraryThing
Ms. Shriver is a gifted writer. - LibraryThing
And the ending is just so brutal and sad. - LibraryThing
Some of their exchanges were worth savoring. - LibraryThing
I found the ending a bit implausible, but maybe not. - LibraryThing
Lionel Shriver is an incredibly gifted writer. - LibraryThing

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Hanneri - LibraryThing

This book was intriguing, yet very, very disturbing for a number of reasons. Eva, mother to the murdering teenage boy, is brutally honest about her misconceptions of motherhood, her feelings toward ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - maryreinert - LibraryThing

My least favorite character in everything that I have read, yet pitiful at the same time. Eva Khatchadourian is the arrogrant, self-absorbed, cold mother to Kevin who as a teenager commits mass murder ... Read full review

All 8 reviews »

Contents

Section 1
1
Section 2
11
Section 3
25
Section 4
33
Section 5
46
Section 6
56
Section 7
65
Section 8
77
Section 16
175
Section 17
195
Section 18
211
Section 19
224
Section 20
239
Section 21
255
Section 22
268
Section 23
284

Section 9
84
Section 10
95
Section 11
109
Section 12
121
Section 13
130
Section 14
144
Section 15
159
Section 24
306
Section 25
328
Section 26
351
Section 27
360
Section 28
391
Copyright

Common terms and phrases

Popular passages

Page 169 - I killed because people like me are mistreated every day. I did this to show society push us and we will push back.
Page 258 - Throughout my life I was ridiculed. Always beaten, always hated. Can you, society, blame me for what I do?

About the author (2004)

Lionel Shriver was born Margaret Ann Shriver on May 18, 1957 in Gastonia, North Carolina. She changed her first name because of her preference for it. She was educated at Barnard College, and Columbia University (BA, MFA). She has lived in Nairobi, Bangkok and Belfast, and currently lives in London. Shriver wrote seven novels and published six (one novel could not find a publisher) before writing We Need to Talk About Kevin, which she called her "make or break" novel. She won the 2005 Orange Prize for her eighth published novel, We Need to Talk About Kevin, a thriller and close study of maternal ambivalence, and the role it might have played in the title character's decision to murder nine people at his high school. The book created a lot of controversy, and achieved success through word of mouth.

Bibliographic information