Edward St. Aubyn’s At Last

The fifth and final book in the Patrick Melrose quintet takes place on the day of Patrick’s mother’s funeral. Up to this point, he has survived: being raped and abused, repeatedly, by his father; a lengthy heroin addiction, followed by […]

Edward St. Aubyn’s Mother’s Milk

Time passes even more quickly for Patrick Melrose, the eponymous hero of Edward St. Aubyn’s justly celebrated Patrick Melrose quintet of novels, than it does in real life. When we first met him, he was just five years old, an […]

Edward St. Aubyn’s Some Hope

It occurred to me only retrospectively that the third book in Edward St. Aubyn’s Patrick Melrose series is the first to employ a sincere title. The first book, Never Mind, culminates in the rape of the young Patrick Melrose by his […]

Edward St. Aubyn’s Bad News

Bad News, the second of Edward St. Aubyn’s Patrick Melrose novels, gives us our first glimpse of the titular protagonist as an adult. He is in his mid-twenties now, and rapidly blowing through a large inheritance to feed an extravagant […]

Edward St. Aubyn’s Never Mind

One of the staples of British fiction is the so-called “novel of manners,” which takes a magnifying glass to the customs, manners and mannerisms of a social class. Think, for example, of the works of Jane Austen, or of Thackeray’s […]