The Perfect Nanny, by Leila Slimani

The Perfect NannyThe Perfect Nanny by Leïla Slimani

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I saw Lullaby, also known as The Perfect Nanny on Richard and Judy’s book club list. I read the first page, as I always do before purchase, but the first line sold me straight away.

“The baby is dead. It only took a few seconds.”

I’m glad I carried on reading as it is a gripping story once you get into it. It tells the tale of Louise’s desperate need to be wanted, to be included and seen as a true part of the family. It shows her utter panic at being left behind, forgotten and removed from her role.

I read this over the course of a few evenings. It did take a while to get into as it switched between characters and tense quite often, and I never felt truly in the mind of the Nanny. But saying that… towards the end, I felt more drawn in by the tragedy of her situation. I felt her sorrow, lived through her anguish, as her darkness and desperation took hold and she committed the final act of murderous betrayal, losing her mind and those she loved in the process. The author wrote these parts well and it kept me reading. I read the last half in one sitting and had to go back to read the first chapter again, which is ultimately the end of the book.

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