Apr 23, 2018

April: Lullabies for Little Criminals


Edited: Feb 7

Our first ever book for The Academic Woman: Book Club!


Heather O'Neill's Lullabies for Little Criminals gives us a glimpse into the daily life of a 12 year old growing up in Montreal. But Baby is no ordinary child. Raised by a young, single father struggling with heroin addiction, her experiences are simultaneously familiar and shocking.


This book has the power to remind us of the joy and wonder experienced by a child in even the most tenuous of circumstances.


Come and join us in reading this book. Whether you read it in April, or anytime afterwards, we invite you to share your comments, your thoughts and ideas as you read. Post your comments below, and/or add ratings and comments on Goodreads.


A gritty, heart-wrenching novel about bruised innocence on the city's feral streets—the remarkable debut of a stunning literary talent
May 1, 2018

So I guess I'll start the conversation then! Finished the book last thursday and definitely cried for a lot of the last 30 pages...


From a writing point of view, I found it really interesting the way O'Neill made it really sound like a child talking even though I don't think it really dumbed down the language or the material. I spotted that she was using shorter sentences, and perhaps bouncing between topics more than one might otherwise, but apart from that I didn't really pick up on any techniques she was using, curious if anyone spotted anything else??


And from a story point of view oh my god... still very much processing everything that happened but maybe I'll have thoughts on that at some point too.


Very interested to hear what other people thought! :)

Alison Prior
Jun 5, 2018

This was the first fiction novel I have picked up and read in years. Full disclosure here: I did not analyse it from an academic perspective at all! I found that I loved the process of reading a (physical, hard copy!) book again and being swept up in the journey of someone elses life that was totally removed from my own. There was something strangely familiar about the way Baby thought and the way she viewed even the most challenging situations. Her outlook on life and the way she processed information took me back to how I felt as a child... the way we view adults and encounter dangerous situations with an element of naivety and innocence. I was amazed at how much this book took me back to my own childhood, despite growing up in a completely different environment.

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