NPR

In 'Small Animals,' A Mom Grapples With Parenting In An 'Age Of Fear'

In 2011, Kim Brooks intentionally left her 4-year-old in a car as she ran into a Target. In her new book, she attempts to reckon with the consequences of her decision, and parenting in today's world.
Small Animals by Kim Brooks. Source: NPR

In early Spring of 2011, Kim Brooks intentionally left her 4-year-old son, Felix, in a car alone while she ran into a neighborhood Target — in the same neighborhood she'd grown up in — to buy a pair of padded headphones.

The decision was made in the split of a second, a quick moment that had long-lasting consequences for Brooks, who realized only hours later that a stranger had videotaped her son, then reported her to the

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from NPR

NPR2 min readPsychology
Shhhhh. Listen Closely. Your Plants Might Be Talking
With extremely sensitive microphones, a new exhibit at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden shows it's possible to hear the sounds that plants make when they're growing.
NPR3 min read
'The Downstairs Girl' Faces Difficult History With Joy And Style
In Stacey Lee's new novel, an opinionated and talented Chinese American girl makes her way in Reconstruction-era Atlanta while preserving her secret work as an advice columnist in the local paper.
NPR4 min read
Buying Greenland? That's Nothing To Gabriel García Márquez
Gabriel García Márquez's intricate, confusing, magnificent novel centers around a monstrous, nameless dictator — known only as the General or the Patriarch — who sells the entire Caribbean Sea.