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ISBN 13: 9780670883189

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A New York Times Notable Book. Set in the Washington, D.C., suburbs during the summer of the Watergate break-ins, Berne's assured, skillful first novel is about what can happen when a child's accusation is the only lead in a case of sexual assault and murder. A BOOK -OF-THE-MONTH CLUB and QUALITY PAPERBACK BOOK CLUB selection.

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Review:

A murdered boy, a runaway husband, a family spinning out of control--Suzanne Berne's A Crime in the Neighborhood is no ordinary coming-of-age novel. The narrator of this dark tale of 1970s suburbia is 10-year-old Marsha, who lives with her mother and older twin siblings in a suburb of Washington, D.C. In the spring of 1972, a young boy is molested, murdered, and then dumped behind a shopping mall. That the child was not particularly likeable is just one of Berne's deviations from the expected, as clear-eyed Marsha recalls the boy's many character flaws, even as she relates the details of an undeniably horrifying crime. Though murder is the most visible crime in Marsha's neighborhood, it is by no means the only one; when Marsha's father and aunt run off together, their enormous betrayal sends Marsha's mother into a tailspin and Marsha into a strange dalliance with Mr. Green, the neighbor next door.

A Crime in the Neighborhood is a deft and provocative first novel that turns many of the coming-of-age conventions on their heads. There is nothing sepia-tinted about Marsha's recollections of her childhood--the lives of 10-year-olds are mired in the mistakes of adults and the cruelties of other children. The pitiless eye Marsha brings to bear on the friends, family, and acquaintances of her youth makes A Crime in the Neighborhood an unusual and worthwhile read.

From the Back Cover:

In the summer of 1972, in a suburb of Washington, D.C., the body of a twelve-year-old boy was found near a shopping mall. He had been sexually molested and then murdered. The worst crime came later. Marsha Eberhardt was ten years old at the time of the murder. The story of how she reacted is as disturbing as the murder itself. As the adult Marsha looks back on that summer and recounts the events, she sees herself as an almost fanatically vigilant little girl edging as close as possible to every disturbance. There were all kinds of disturbances - the murder, the break-in at the Watergate that Walter Cronkite kept talking about, Marsha's own family's upheaval. Her father had deserted her. Her teenaged siblings were shoplifting. Her mother was flirting with the new neighbor next door. When the summer dragged on and on without the police solving the murder, Marsha felt compelled to put the "evidence" she'd been collecting to use. How do crimes that we witness or commit as children continue to haunt us years later? Can we ever escape the wrongs we've done, or the wrongs done to us? Marsha Eberhardt, a child of the seventies - of the first generation to grow up believing there's no such thing as "good" government, "safe" neighborhoods, or "stable" families - finds herself turning this question over and over in her mind.

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Published by publisher (2007)
ISBN 10: 0670883182 ISBN 13: 9780670883189
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Book Description publisher, 2007. Condition: Good. A+ Customer service! Satisfaction Guaranteed! Book is in Used-Good condition. Pages and cover are clean and intact. Used items may not include supplementary materials such as CDs or access codes. May show signs of minor shelf wear and contain limited notes and highlighting. Seller Inventory # 0670883182-2-4

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