Jeremy's Reviews > Little Children

Little Children by Tom Perrotta
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Jul 31, 07

bookshelves: fiction, borrowed-from-someone

Tom Perrotta is usually very fun to read. I'm pretty sure I've read all his books, and I typically polish them off (meaning I read them, not eat them; you should not eat books) within the day, which for me is impressive. A dinette set could finish a marathon with time to spare well before I complete a book, but Perrotta's voice is easygoing and funny, and a master at pacing if you ask me, so I happily breeze right through.

But "Little Children", for which he has arguably received the most attention, is in no way his best book. Now I still finished it in a day or two, so at least it's not boring. I got the impression that Perrotta felt like he was making this ostensibly mind-blowing point about the parent-child relationship, wanting us to sit down with our head in our hands and murmur "My God, my child is not the child, but I, the parent, am really the child, although my child is the child as well, but only because nature has forced him to be a child, whereas I, the parent, a supposed adult, have no such excuse for my childish behavior, and yet I remain a child, a child who has a child. I'm calling DHS on myself. Thank you, Tom Perrotta".

I hate to think of him snapping his fingers and declaring "Aha! I will name my book 'Little Children'! That's perfect! Because it involves little children, like real actual children, but really it's about the little children in all of us! Because that's all we are! Everyone! Honey! Honey? Where are you? Honey, are you in the bathroom? Where are you?! Honey?! Jesus, there you are! How can you stand the TV that loud? I just figured it out! Guess what I'm calling the book? 'Little Children'! It means two things!"

I guess if you had never read any of his stuff in the past, this book might seem pretty good, and where it was the first novel of his to really spend much time on the charts, it seems likely to me that better-than-usual marketing (coupled with the fact that, on the whole, young parents seem to like to read books) is the most viable explanation for the novel's comparatively runaway success.

Worst of all is the ending, which is just really, really stupid. Didn't like the movie much, either.
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Comments (showing 1-5 of 5) (5 new)

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Sarah Kelleher "I hate to think of him snapping his fingers and declaring "Aha! I will name my book 'Little Children'! That's perfect! Because it involves little children, like real actual children, but really it's about the little children in all of us! Because that's all we are! Everyone! Honey! Honey? Where are you? Honey, are you in the bathroom? Where are you?! Honey?! Jesus, there you are! How can you stand the TV that loud? I just figured it out! Guess what I'm calling the book? 'Little Children'! It means two things!"

This is funny. There is a bar in my hometown that irks me called The Pour House. I always pictured the owner in a hurry to call up his friends when he figured out what he was going to name it... but I could never quite explain why it bothers me as well as you just did.


Nicole I concur, the ending was awful, but I liked the movie. I didn't know he also wrote Election, pretty good movie but is the book any better?


Chana I am enjoyed your review, more than the book so far.


Méchant Loup The movie was great and it has that stud in it.... What's his name?


Sean R. Corbin Not to argue - but I do want to know what anyone hates about the ending.


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