The story of the impact made on an ordinary family when their teenage son is accused of murdering his girlfriend. The author has also written "The Autobiography of My Mother" and "Tender Mercies". She has been the recipient of numerous awards.The story of the impact made on an ordinary family when their teenage son is accused of murdering his girlfriend. The author has also written "The Autobiography of My Mother" and "Tender Mercies". She has been the recipient of numerous awards.Read Less
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Publishers Weekly, 1992-06-22 In what is arguably her best novel to date, Brown raises challenging issues in a dramatic and provocative context. Her questions--How well can parents know their children? How far should they go to protect them?--are framed in a powerful narrative that weds the suspense of a psychological thriller to a novel of character. As in her previous work ( Civil Wars ; Tender Mercies ; etc.), she demonstrates remarkable insight into human relationships and scrutinizes ethical principles in crisis situations. The initial chapters of this story of one family trapped in a nightmarish situation are riveting. In the hospital of her small New Hampshire town, pediatrician Carolyn Reiser views the viciously smashed skull of teenager Martha Taverner, who had been a classmate of her son Jacob. Carolyn and her sculptor husband Ben soon discover that Jacob--mysteriously missing--was the girl's lover and is the prime suspect in her murder. Brown captures the Reisers' shock and disorientation as they confront the unthinkable, and makes credible Ben's instant decision to destroy the incriminating evidence--a blood-covered jack that he finds in the trunk of Jacob's car. As the family disintegrates during the course of Jacob's arrest and trial, the moral conflict that develops between Carolyn and Ben, though an inevitable outcome of their personalities and principles, is played out in a way that strains credulity somewhat. Yet readers will remain immersed in Brown's gripping story, mesmerized by the questions she raises and by the brave, intelligent, compassionate manner in which she deals with which she grapples with them. (Sept.) . (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Publishers Weekly, 1993-07-19 Brown's riveting novel about a family torn apart by a son's murder of his girlfriend--a six-week PW bestseller in cloth--scrutinizes ethical principles in crisis situations. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
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