Criminals

Criminals

4.5 2
by Margot Livesey
     
 

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Criminals is the story of adult brother and sister Ewan and Mollie and their decision to rescue an abandoned child. But is the child being rescued by these two, or abducted? Where is the line between moral and criminal behavior? What is the cost of good intentions? Livesey paints a portrait of two people blinded by need and the desire for betterment.  See more details below

Overview

Criminals is the story of adult brother and sister Ewan and Mollie and their decision to rescue an abandoned child. But is the child being rescued by these two, or abducted? Where is the line between moral and criminal behavior? What is the cost of good intentions? Livesey paints a portrait of two people blinded by need and the desire for betterment.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
``Banker finds Baby in Bus station'' is the caption that uptight London bachelor Ewan Munro ruefully realizes will describe events in this intriguing novel about the banality of evil. Discovering a swaddled infant in a lavatory stall in Perth, Ewan almost absentmindedly takes the baby to his unstable sister, Mollie Lafferty, intending to call the authorities once he arrives at her home. Mollie is in a bad way; she has split with her novelist husband, anguished because he has fictionalized her in his current novel, and, she thinks, given away secrets she didn't even realize she harbored. (Chunks of this novel are interpolated as Ewan reads it, adding tension to a narrative already taut with frightening implications.) For Mollie now recognizes that her great need is to have a child, and she conspires to keep the baby. Meanwhile, the child's feckless father, an amoral layabout called Kenneth, who has impetuously abandoned his daughter, realizes that he can extort money when he shows up to claim her; and her mother, a nurse from Bombay, becomes distraught at the infant's disappearance. Scottish-born Livesey (Homework) controls the narrative with assurance, gradually laying bare the bedrock of her characters' inner lives. One reads with fascinated attention as Ewan and Mollie-he preoccupied by a lapse in his meticulously moral behavior that has made him complicit in illegal trading; she sliding into emotional breakdown-discover how easy it is to become criminals. Livesey maintains a low-key style that perfectly matches the way ordinary lives can slip into chaos; her elegantly simple prose, her control of pacing and characterization and her insights into human behavior combine to produce a fascinating narrative. 50,000 first printing; Literary Guild selection. (Feb.)
Library Journal
In this latest from Scotswoman Livesey, author of the well-received Homework (LJ 12/89), an abandoned infant touches the lives of five very different people. A Literary Guild alternate.
From the Publisher

“A wonderful novel, impeccably written and thoroughly engrossing.” —The New York Times Book Review

“Where do love, honesty, and responsibility intersect? . . . A provocative rumination on family and what it means to do the right thing.” —Glamour

“Funny, suspenseful, and sometimes creepy.” —Los Angeles Times

“One of the most surprising thrillers of the year--completely offbeat, unexpected, and unique. Margot Livesey is right up there in the realm of P. D. James.” —Newsday

“A story of many kinds of love, indifference, secrecy, and blind selfishness that drives as fiercely to its surprising conclusion as any thriller.” —Rosellen Brown

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780140262773
Publisher:
Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
Publication date:
02/01/1997
Pages:
288
Product dimensions:
5.32(w) x 7.80(h) x 0.54(d)

Meet the Author

Margot Livesey is the author of five novels, including Homework and Eva Moves the Furniture, as well as the story collection Learning By Heart. Born in Scotland, she lives in Boston, Massachusetts, where she is the writer in residence at Emerson College.

Brief Biography

Hometown:
Boston, Massachusetts
Date of Birth:
July 24, 1953
Place of Birth:
Perth, Scotland
Education:
B.A. in English and philosophy from the University of York, England

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Criminals 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very interesting and well written character study. The novel is engaging to the very end. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great book full of emotions confusing,learning to love not wanting to let go sorrow and loss it has alittle of everything... at first seems like those indie flicks where nothing happens but then it gets intriguing I liked these book one of those books you don't forget.