'I had in my care that summer four dogs, three cats, the Moran kids, Daisy, my eight-year-old cousin, and Flora, the toddler child of a local artist. There was also, for a little while, a litter of wild rabbits, three of them, that had been left under our back steps ' Alice McDermott's haunting and enchanting new work of fiction is narrated by a ...Read More'I had in my care that summer four dogs, three cats, the Moran kids, Daisy, my eight-year-old cousin, and Flora, the toddler child of a local artist. There was also, for a little while, a litter of wild rabbits, three of them, that had been left under our back steps ' Alice McDermott's haunting and enchanting new work of fiction is narrated by a woman who was born beautiful. Her parents decided that her best chance in life was to marry a wealthy man, so she was raised on the east end of Long Island, among the country houses of the rich. On the cusp of fifteen, she is the town's most sought-after babysitter - cheerful, beloved, a wonder with children and animals, but also a solitary soul with an already complex understanding of human nature - when her favourite cousin, Daisy, comes to spend the summer. The narrator's witty, piquant, deeply etched evocation of all that was really transpiring under the surface during that seemingly idyllic season gives her wry tale - infused with suppressed passion, disappointment, and enduring hope - its remarkable vividness and impact. Once again, Alice McDermott explores the mysterious depths of what seems like everyday life with unforgettable insight and resonant emotional power.Read Less
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It is the sort of book you wish it would take the whole summer to read. McDermott's Child of My Heart is like a literary version of the Nanny Diaries, this one beautifully written and over way too fast. Theresa's Eastern Long Island summers, taken up by babysitting for wealthier neighbours, is described so poignantly that anyone who reads it will feel like a 15 year old misfit for just a little while.
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