Books and Movies Reviews

Child’s Book of True Crime

Fresh from college, Kate Byrne, a 22-year-old, is working in herfirst job, teaching a fourth grade class in Endport, a small town on the southern coast of Tasmania.Strangely childlike, she is embroiled in a love affair with the father of her most gifted student, Lucien Marne.Thomas Marne is a successful corporate lawyer in Hobart and thefirst chapter of;A Children;s True Book of Crime; primarily focuses on his relationship with Kate.
Kate struggles out of her black underwear in Thomas’ car while he speeds them toward a motel during her school lunch hour.The two appear restless in anticipation of fulfilling their sexual desires.Kate makes coarse references to her surroundings, relating passing boulders to ;Mouths and tongues, like pornographic things.;Thomas begins to lose focus on the road ahead; ;[his] driving deteriorates,; as his concentration shifts to Kate;s flirtatious motions.When commenting on their surroundings, the attitudes of the two are juxtaposed: Kate marvels at the luxury mansion they pull up to, ;It;s lovely;, while Thomas, ;Yes it is…clearly agitated.;
As the story develops, it is increasingly obvious that Hooper wants us to see that the relationship between the characters is solely based on sexual attraction.Thomas; comment, ;I;m going to rent the bed by the half hour,; implies how brief and insignificant these meetings are to him. He appears to be avoiding the commitment of their relationship, constantly reiterating to Kate that the only reason for these meetings is to alleviate boredom: ;This is just sex, nothing more.;Before arranging a reservation for the hotel room, he reminds Kate the affair is ;…to be strictly kept away from the sentimental.; I am given the impression that his cautioning appears to be directed not to Kate, but rather at himself.