Thursday, June 22, 2006

Addendum to The School Run

When I wrote my review of The School Run, I neglected to mention that the novel included a startling set of incidents that I found very disturbing as a parent. One of the characters leaves her child behind in his car seat while she makes a dash into the school - not once, but twice. Even after her toddler son has escaped from the car and disappeared for a few heart-pounding moments, it doesn't occur to this mother to actually pick up her child and carry him inside the school while she enters to dig through the lost-and-found box. Instead, she leaves him behind a second time, the next time locking the car and assuming he's secure.

There's a second aspect to this brief bit of maternal insanity: even knowing, as they search for the little boy, that the mother left her child locked in the car, the police don't question whether she was neglecting her parental duty. To me, that reveals that the author feels like there's nothing wrong with "just dashing inside" somewhere, provided a child is locked into a car. Believe me, I do understand what a pain it is to unload and carry a heavy child for a brief jaunt, say, into a gas station to pay - both of my sons were big, healthy babies and it was a nuisance lugging them around; but, as the old saw goes, "You do what you have to do." I found that particular secondary storyline upsetting because children have been known to die in hot cars while parents left them "briefly". I just thought it was worth a mention.

Bookfool who used to have a perpetually sore back from carrying kiddos

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for visiting my blog! I use comment moderation because apparently my blog is a spam magnet. Don't worry. If you're not a robot, your comment will eventually show up and I will respond, with a few exceptions. If a comment smacks of advertising, contains a dubious link or is offensive, it will be deleted. I love to hear from real people! I'm a really chatty gal and I love your comments!