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Sacred Teacher and Student Trust in a Fairy Tale World

12/21/2011 06:38 pm ET | Updated Feb 14, 2012

The Kingdom of Childhood, by Rebecca Coleman, is a gripping novel, full of suspense and psychological insight into a woman's first adulterous behavior, laddering up to statutory rape, and finally the shocking decent into insanity.

Kindergarten teacher Judy McFarland's life is slowly unraveling. She and her husband no longer share the connection needed to sustain a marriage borne of love and high ideas. Now in her forties, with her children grown, she finds she has become another humdrum statistic, bitter and looking back at life's what-ifs. And so it changes when her interests light on a 16-year-old boy at her prestigious Waldorf school.

Rebecca Coleman seamlessly weaves past and present, introducing us to Judy as a lonely and frightened child living in Germany. This stunning debut both fascinates and explores complex family relationships, and delves skillfully into the psychological make-up between victim and perpetrator.

The author has created a brilliant multilayered tale.The Kingdom of Childhood is a thought-provoking book that probes a chilling subject matter. A book which left me thinking long after I read the last page. And after all, isn't that what a great book should do?