“We all have some disturbing memories of the teacher.”

“We all have some disturbing memories of the teacher.”

BarcelonaA girl's body floats in a high school pool. Suicide is ruled out, the police launch an investigation, and it doesn't take long to find the perfect suspect, who ends up being tried and convicted. After more than twenty years, Buddy Kane, a former student of the centre, returns as a teacher and… Podcaster Success, and it does not take him long to form a memory of that case, which the more he thought about it, the more it seemed to him to have been hastily and wrongly resolved. This is the starting point I want to ask you some questions (Periscope/SixtoPeso, 2024), one excitement Addictive and constructed with exquisite precision, it is what Rebecca McKay (Illinois, 1978) – author ofBig optimistsLiberter Prize 2022 – I thought about reconsidering and debunking some of the clichés that still fuel the black novel and the noir novel. Real crime.

Apparently, this novel and Big optimists They have nothing to do with it.

But they have one thing in common: the importance of memory.

What interested you in memory this time?

There comes a moment in life when you realize that some of the security you had as a teenager has been shaken. This happens not only in relation to yourself, but also when you think about people you have been close to who you may not have judged well or whom you did not know, in fact, what their intentions were towards you. The Me Too campaign broke out when I was 40 years old. Many of us, women and men, needed to look back to review our past.

I want to ask you some questions The film takes place in Granby, an isolated high school in New Hampshire. You yourself live with your family in similar high school facilities, but in Indiana.

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-One of my daughters is going to the same high school I went to. My husband teaches there, and we have lived there for more than two decades. This gives me great physical proximity to the students, while at the same time seeing the increasing distance that separates me from them.

The protagonist is not a writer, but one writer Podcaster Success returns to high school as a guest teacher. Thalia, a roommate and former friend, was murdered there in 1995, shortly before graduation. The book helps you talk about magic Real crime In the United States and in many places around the world. Did you like it too?

— These stories have always interested me, but not for the gorier, sicker aspects. True murder stories attract attention because they are a matter of survival. We need to know why this person died, so we believe we can prevent it from happening to us.

Do women feel more at risk than men?

– naturally. Just remember audience data Real crime: 80% women.

Your novel asks what this obsession with murder says about us as a society.

—One of the most worrying points is the mass publishing of stories. Every now and then, all the media talks about someone who ended up dying, but they had as many complications as any of us. There is a reductive discourse about victimhood. And they talk about it as if their lives were public… There is a situation where all red lines tend to be crossed.

When does a young, beautiful girl like Thalia Keith die?

The obsession with beautiful girls, young women, and rich killers says terrible things about us.

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She can even be blamed for being the victim. Some will say: “He deserved it.”

– I wanted to return to such ideas and give the reader another point of view, going beyond clichés Real crime And looking at it from a very realistic perspective.

As I was reading the novel, I was thinking about how different your approach was from mine James Ellroy a Black Dahlia o David Lynch A Twin Peaks.

– She must have been one of the few girls he hadn't seen Twin Peaks When he played in the nineties. I did it much later, while I was writing I want to ask you some questions. The victim, Laura Palmer, is viewed from a fetishistic perspective. The brutal part of the murder has been removed. She's a very cool girl: it even gives her a romantic edge.

In the book, the skin color of the person accused of killing Thalia and his social class influence when he is blamed.

— For the police at that time, it was easy to blame someone Intruder Like Omar, he was like that for three reasons: because he was black, because he came from a humble background, and because he was neither a student nor a teacher, but a coach. Carrying the dead man was a simple matter. He was young, he was on drugs, he must have been involved with Thalia, and he must have killed her in a fit of rage.

The truth Bodie investigates is more complicated than this: from time to time she interrogates Mr. Bloch who was also a professor at Granby. Years after it happened, she doubts the actions of a mature man for the first time.

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— We all have some disturbing memories of a teacher. In my case, there was someone we suspected of exaggerating with the boys. Years later, when I returned to campus, my husband and I ran into each other again and found him to be a nice guy. Soon after, he changed schools and was arrested. It turns out, in this particular case, that my sixteen-year-old self was more perceptive than my thirty-year-old self.

The book does not limit itself to making accusations against sexual predators of a certain age. Buddy's ex-husband is Popular topic On social media because the lover is tarnishing his reputation.

– It was clear that if the Me Too movement could highlight horrific cases, it might also go further, according to some voices. Now we are clear that the relationship between teacher and student is not good, either because of the age difference or because one of them has more power than the other. In the case of Jerome, Buddy's ex-husband, we're talking about a consensual relationship between two adults. Can we consider him a sexual predator, or was he simply not on his best behavior on all occasions? Readers have completely different opinions… Young people think he is a monster. They are, in general, a very strict generation in these matters.

On the other hand, your generation lived quietly with behaviors that are now considered offensive.

– Morals change over the years. It is good that the silence can be broken and that the past can be reviewed openly. Giving victims a voice is not wrong, it can prevent history from repeating itself.

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