Friday, March 20, 2020

Nine bad mothers in fiction

Sarah Vaughan is a former Guardian journalist - news reporter and political correspondent - who always wanted to write fiction.

Her latest novel, Little Disasters, is a psychological drama about the challenges of motherhood.

At the Waterstones blog Vaughan tagged nine of "her favourite malicious, malevolent and muddle-headed mothers in literature," including:
Adèle in Adèle by Leila Slimani

Leila Slimani’s eponymous heroine, like Anna in Jill Alexander Essbaum’s Hausfrau, has been seen as a modern Emma Bovary. But Adèle is far more narcissistic and her addiction to often dangerous sex with strangers – she ends up asking two drug addicts to smash her genitals – means she is all too ready to abandon three-year-old Lucien. “Lucien is a burden, a constraint that she struggles to get used to… Adele isn’t sure where her love for her son fits in among all her other jumbled feelings: panic when she has to leave him with someone else; annoyance at having to dress him; exhaustion from pushing his recalcitrant buggy up the hill.”
Read about the other entries on the list.

--Marshal Zeringue