If you’re in the mood for some snarky British social commentary, Edward St. Aubyn’s The Patrick Melrose Novels delivers some very black humor. The four novels in this omnibus volume, Never Mind, Bad News, Some Hope, and Mother’s Milk tell the life story of Patrick Melrose whose father is abusive and whose mother concerns herself with saving the world rather than taking care of her son. In Bad News, Edward St. Aubyn creates the frighteningly real world of a drug addict. Patrick Melrose spends most of the novel chasing around New York City trying to score some drugs. Yes, there’s humor but it’s pretty grim. Bad News is the most convincing depiction of addiction that I’ve ever read. St. Aubyn cleverly develops the arc of Patrick Melrose’s life from childhood to middle age. The books are filled with witty conversations and shocking scandals. Edward St. Aubyn captures life in this segment of the British class system perfectly. If you put P. G. Wodehouse and Evelyn Waugh in a blender, the result would be Edward St. Aubyn. GRADES: Never Mind, B; Bad News, A; Some Hope, B; Mother’s Milk, B+

4 thoughts on “THE PATRICK MELROSE NOVELS By Edward St. Aubyn

    1. george Post author

      I’ll be happy to send you my copy, Beth. Diane wants me to reduce my collection by a 1000 books so we can move around the basement without climbing over stacks.


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