A classic tale from Doris Lessing, winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature, of a family torn apart by the arrival of Ben, their feral fifth child. ...Show synopsisA classic tale from Doris Lessing, winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature, of a family torn apart by the arrival of Ben, their feral fifth child. 'Listening to the laughter, the sounds of children playing, Harriet and David would reach for each other's hand, and smile, and breathe happiness.' Four children, a beautiful old house, the love of relatives and friends - Harriet and David Lovatt's life is a glorious hymn to domestic bliss and old-fashioned family values. But when their fifth child is born, a sickly and implacable shadow is cast over this tender idyll. Large and ugly, violent and uncontrollable, the infant Ben, 'full of cold dislike', tears at Harriet's breast. Struggling to care for her new-born child, faced with a darkness and a strange defiance she has never known before, Harriet is deeply afraid of what, exactly, she has brought into the world ...Hide synopsis
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This was a book about society; its impact on a family; and how one difficult child can change the dynamics not only within the birth family, but the extended family as well. It was an excellent book, which I could hardly put down. It was a very personal book because it explored the feelings and thoughts of every character without lapsing into cliches. This is one of my favorite Lessing books!
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