Lullabies for Little Criminals by Heather O’Neill

lullabies-for-little-criminalsOctober book club choice, Lullabies for Little Criminals by Heather O’Neill proved to be one of the liveliest discussions our group has had for a while. This usually happens when we disagree on a the star rating (remember 1-5). I LOVE it when this happens because the discussion takes us all kinds of places. Many of us didn’t like the book, although there was agreement it was well written. Cindy read a piece that O’Neill wrote ten years after she wrote the book that gave insight into the author’s own feelings about the book.

This is the story of a girl who is actually named “Baby” and her difficult life. Several group members commented on the incredible descriptions, the phrases and the clever similes. Some felt the book to be just too sad. One member felt like this was a story she had read too many times…nothing new. Several of us have worked in the field of education and felt that social services would not have reacted the way depicted in the story. But a member pointed out when the story was actually taking place, which was back in the 70s (I think?) and we had to agree that social services were quite different in those times.

So in general, this was a maybe recommend by a couple of us, one person loved it and a few gave it very low ratings. Star:1-4. You decide.