Culture Street

Books

See How Small by Scott Blackwood

On January 12, 2015

By Sophia Whitfield

Scott Blackwood’s haunting novel addresses the desperate issue of those left behind after a senseless act of violence that impacts an entire community.

Blackwood took inspiration from an event that occurred in Austin, Texas in 1991. Four girls, between the ages of 13-17, were killed in a yoghurt shop.

In See How Small, three girls working in an ice cream shop are tortured, killed and then burned by two strangers. Blackwood’s story is of those left behind. They are the ones who have to come to terms with their loss. In order to do this they need closure, a resolution that explains the atrocity.

Two of the girls killed, Elizabeth and Zadie, are sisters. Much of the focus of the book is on their mother Kate who seeks to keep her girls’ identity alive. In a small town where everyone knows each other it is hard to get away from such a catastrophic event. Jack, the fireman who finds the bodies, is haunted by the image of his discovery. He has a daughter the same age.

Five years later the community is still grappling with the events of the past.

See How Small is a tragic tale, beautifully told.

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