Sunday, February 27, 2011

staceygarrett's CBR3 Review #7: We Need to Talk about Kevin by Lionel Shriver

I am a firm believer that you have to be in certain moods to read certain books. Maybe when I first picked up this book, months and months ago, I was far too stuck in my own bullshit pity to give a fuck about reading someone else’s? I don’t know. I was filled with hate and the teeniest bit of rage for this book and everything it encompassed and when I put it down after reading 70 or so pages, I didn’t know if I would ever pick it back up again.

I have a hard time letting go of books, even if they disappoint me or, as the case was with this one, anger me. I was determined to give it another shot and I am glad I did. I picked it back up a week ago and I haven’t been able to put it down since.

Eva doesn’t give a fuck anymore. She is done shutting-up about what everyone has always told her that she had to shut up about. She kept it to herself for years, a lot of years, and she is done with that. Fuck that noise, she said.

The book is written in a series of letters, very long letters, to Eva’s ex-husband Franklin about their son, convicted school-shooter, Kevin. The letters take place two years after the shooting, and they detail everything about Kevin’s life from the decision to have him to visiting him in his new home, a correctional facility.

The letters include everything she has ever wanted to say but felt like she couldn’t for looking like a bad person and a terrible mother, but she says now because everyone thinks she’s a terrible mother anyway. Eva pours out every thought she has ever had about her son who was less than stellar himself, but she could never express these thoughts because it’s her kid and she’s his mother! 

At first my hatred for this book was vast. I thought Eva was shallow and reprehensible. I thought she was an uncaring C U the day after Monday. I couldn’t stand Eva or her penchant to use larger words than the actions warranted (says the girl with a five-syllable blog title that, at times, gets tiresome for even her to spell). She’s pretentious and bitchy and cold and some of the worst parts of upperclass-hippie culture that I myself aspire to be. But she is also the mother of an unfeeling, abundantly apathetic brat and the ex-wife to a holier than thou prick who looks to be an ideal husband on paper.

Eva might have been a bad mother and an unsupportive wife and she may have wanted more for herself than to eventually become the mother of the most revolting breeds of children, but she is also something else that I can more than relate to…

She’s just done.


Post a Comment