Never Mind

I don’t remember exactly how I came across Edward St. Aubyn’s name or learned about the Patrick Melrose novels, but I recently procured them. The first in the series, Never Mind, is set over the course of one day in provincial France, at the estate of a wealthy, broken, family. This novella gives short shrift to most of its characters and doesn’t develop the family or plot very much but I’m compelled to keep reading and get more of St. Aubyn’s voice and perspective with the subsequent books. His descriptions of some of the most horrible things one can imagine happening to children and families are deftly captured. St. Aubyn is among the best prose stylists I’ve come across. Perhaps ever.

In this fantastic New Yorker profile of him, you get a better sense of how much of himself he included in Patrick.