The book had been sitting by my bedside for a while but I was loath to start it — the subject matter was frankly repugnant. Convinced that novel about a high-school murderer could only be trite, I let it gather dust.
On Friday evening I read the first few pages and realised that I had it all wrong — I had confused the theme with the novel itself. The writing was tight, the style beguiling, and the first chapters were more about the “We” in the title than Kevin. It was also about motherhood, childhood, couples, being American, elsewheres, the weight of the Armenian genocide, agoraphobia, and funnily enough it was even about the triteness that I had anticipated. I read on and on.
By Sunday afternoon, I was three quarters of the way through. Enjoyment gave way to creeping foreboding. It ended the only way it could.
The subject matter viciously killed the words.