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French-Moroccan writer Leïla Slimani’s Prix Goncourt prize-winning novel, Chanson Douce, published as Lullaby, lands its biggest punch on the first page. A baby is dead and his sister has her lungs punctured before an ambulance arrives. The nanny stabs the two children in the bath, before slitting her own throat. This is not a spoiler: it’s all there in the devastating opening pages of this page-turner.

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