Called the best mystery of the decade
by Stephen King, this novel from award-winner
Atkinson is a breathtaking story of families
divided, love lost and found, and the mysteries of
little girl goes missing in the night.
beautiful young office worker falls victim to a
maniac's apparently random attack.
new mother finds herself trapped in a hell of her
own making - with a very needy baby and a very
demanding husband - until a fit of rage creates a
grisly, bloody escape.
Thirty years after the first
incident, as private investigator Jackson Brodie
begins investigating all three cases, startling
connections and discoveries emerge . . . of the World.
in Edinburgh. Her first novel, Behind the Scenes at
the Museum, was named Whitbread Book of the Year in
the U.K. in 1995, and was followed by Human Croquet,
Emotionally Weird, Not the End of the World, Case
Histories and One Good Turn.
Book Club Discussion questions
The three cases
that open Case Histories are at first quite
separate, and leave you wondering how
Atkinson is going to pull it all together
into one story. You might discuss whether
she is successful at doing that—and how.
Case Histories has
three unsolved crimes and has a private eye
as hero. Kate Atkinson is known as a
'literary writer' and won the Whitbread
Prize for her first novel, Behind the Scenes
at the Museum. How is Case Histories
different from a traditional detectvie
novel—or is it?
"that his job was to help people be good
rather than punish them for being bad."
Another discussion point would be whether
you think he is a moral character, and how
you feel the revelation of the tragedy in
his own past illuminates his actions in the
To Jackson, it
seems as if everyone he encounters has lost
someone or something. One of Kate Atkinson's
recurrent themes is that of lost children.
In spite of her wicked sense of humour, she
creates an overwhelming sense of tension in
this novel. Is it that this theme speaks
directly to the lost child deep inside every
one of us?
"Novels gave you a
completely false idea about life, they told
lies and the implied there were endings when
in reality there were no endings, everything
just went on and on and on." Is Kate
Atkinson being mischievous here, or is this
statement true of this novel?
These questions are provided by
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