02 April 2011

I don’t personally know anyone who is especially fond of reading about bad things happening to children, but these readers obviously exist. I recently found myself at the garage sale of a woman whose outgoing book collection consisted mostly of titles by the likes of Jody Picoult, Jacquelyn Mitchard and Caroline Overington as well as a vast array of so-called misery memoirs. The subtitles were universally distressing, and the covers that didn’t feature the figure of a lone child in the distance  featured bleached, close-up photographs of unsmiling blonde innocents. Gathered together face up on a picnic blanket, it looked like a massacre.     

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