A little stranger kate pullinger

6.42  ·  4,747 ratings  ·  821 reviews
a little stranger kate pullinger

A Little Stranger by Kate Pullinger

Sometimes everything is not enough...

Fran has a good life: a happy marriage to a successful man, a healthy, sweet-natured toddler, a nice London flat. Then, one day, she walks out, leaving it all behind.
As Fran travels to Las Vegas and on to Vancouver she is haunted by memories of her own childhood and driven to reconnect with her estranged mother, Ireni, whose descent into alcoholism has left her destitute.

Will understanding why her own mother failed as a parent help Fran lay the ghosts of her past to rest and return home to her husband and child, or is she destined to repeat her mother’s mistakes?

Praise for A Little Stranger:

“The dark side of motherhood explored in a tale of terror and rage” Independent

“Gripping, sharp and brilliantly kind. She knows the gamble that life is and she never once flinches. Her books are always revelations. What a good read” Ali Smith

“Pullinger treats with thoughtful sympathy that profound taboo, the breaking of the mother-baby bond” Guardian

“A Little Stranger is that extraordinary thing: a mix of literary excellence and finesse combined with a very ordinary and accessible look at life” Sunday Express
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Published 30.11.2018

CBC Book Club: Kate Pullinger meets the Queen

Serpent's Tail, when it publishes novels about women's lives, prefers dark tales of Girls Gone Wrong, the perverse feminine: pathological, sadomasochistic, promiscuous. What could be more perverse, in our culture, which simultaneously sentimentalises and blames mothers, than a mother who abandons her baby and runs off to Las Vegas? Kate Pullinger describes a contemporary domestic world which seems straight out of the s: Fran is confined at home with the baby, unable to afford childcare and so unable to go out to work - bored, angry and depressed.
Kate Pullinger

A Little Stranger

In A Little Stranger, Kate Pullinger has our noses pressed against the window of a home where a young mother abandons her toddler son and husband for a one-way trip to Vegas. She lives in London, in her own flat. She was once valued in her workplace and had taken pride in her career; motherhood, with its leaden heft of thanklessness and isolation, has led to a profound erosion of self-esteem. Fran starts with small abandonments. She leaves Louis in at a grocery shop, and almost takes a bus home before turning back to get her son. But things fall apart when Fran reaches Heathrow with her passport and credit card.

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Getting on a plane for Las Vegas to escape your toddler is something that more than a few first-time mothers fantasise about. But Fran - a thirtysomething Canadian, mother of almost two-year-old Louis and in a stable relationship with Nick, a successful London restaurant manager - actually takes the plunge and buys a one-way ticket there. In choosing this most gothic of American cities, Kate Pullinger's novel cleverly signals the depths of Fran's despair.

Elena Ferrante: Troubling Love. Judith Hendricks: Isabel's Daughter. If you happen to click on one of links and make a purchase, we earn a commission and we always appreciate your support. It was too much to expect. The baby took too much away from them, from Fran, from Nick. Not the baby, not Louis himself, but his existence. The very fact of his being alive.

When Fran deserts her lovely baby, Louis, and flies off to Las Vegas, she commits the maternal equivalent of the sin against the Holy Ghost. In this flawed but impressive novel, Kate Pullinger treats with thoughtful sympathy that profound taboo, the breaking of the mother-baby bond. The novel uses a fractured narrative perspective to investigate the source of such transgression. By alternating third- and first-person voices and skipping back and forth in time, Pullinger creates a fictional conversation about the rights and wrongs of Fran's position. Is Fran right to call herself "a rubbish mother"?



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