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The Perfect Nanny by Leila Slimani

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Description

Book Summary

When Myriam, a French-Moroccan lawyer, decides to return to work after having children, she and her husband look for the perfect nanny for their two young children. They never dreamed they would find Louise: a quiet, polite, devoted woman who sings to the children, cleans the family’s chic apartment in Paris’s upscale tenth arrondissement, stays late without complaint, and hosts enviable kiddie parties. But as the couple and the nanny become more dependent on one another, jealousy, resentment, and suspicions mount, shattering the idyllic tableau.

 

Condition: Like New (may contain a publisher extra mark)

Paperback, Published January 9th 2018 by Penguin Books

1 review for The Perfect Nanny by Leila Slimani

  1. Chandra

    Myriam gave up her career when she had her two children with her husband, Paul. Soon she found herself resenting her children and her husband and needed more from her life. Given the opportunity to go back to law, she took it. With this decision, came the choice to hire a nanny to take care of the children. Enter Louise, who seems perfect! The children love her and as time goes by, they want for nothing. Meals are made, the living space is cleaned, the children are happy… but soon resentment, jealous and anger starts to build…

    I am so torn with this novel. The opening lines “The baby is dead. It only took a few seconds.” really popped and made me think we were going into a novel where we find out how this tragedy occurred. Instead we’re taken on a character study. A journey into the life of a nanny who is often overlooked, underappreciated and with little self esteem. We find a woman whose sole purpose in life is to take care of others and makes that her entire world, often neglecting herself in the process. We get inside her head, her past with her own family, her past nanny history, and a little bit of explaining of why she acts the way that she does. Alongside that we get a little bit into Myriam’s mind as well. Her issues with trying to be a full time mother, her accomplishments as a lawyer, her growing unease with Louise in the house. Then we are presented with various random chapters of other people that are involved in Louise’s life. The problem is, nothing is ever fully fleshed out.

    You realize early on that the book is heading in a direction to reveal why Louis took the actions that she did. The opening pages tell you she killed the children. Now we need to know why. It just never got there. The ending was disappointing. Maybe the author meant for there to be no resolve, which is fine – sometimes I don’t mind this.. but it didn’t get enough meat and potatoes throughout for me to feel satisfied.

    The writing is fantastic, however. My favorite parts of this novel is the author’s prose, with the only exception being that sometimes the chapters became choppy with whose point of view we were supposed to be in. I’m not sure if that is lost in the translation of the novel or not. Either way, you definitely cannot take away from her talent. I can understand why she won the Goncourt award.

    On a final note, putting a quote from The Telegraph as “Is The Perfect Nanny the next Gone Girl? ….” as the first line of the synopsis on Goodreads and Amazon gives you a false feel for what this book is going to be.
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