Blue-eyed Boy, By Joanne Harris

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The Independent Culture

An online obsessive known as "blueyedboy" is the narrator of this creepy pyschodrama. The 42-year-old "BB" lives with his mother in the small Yorkshire village where he spends long hours glued to his computer.

A fan of matricidal fantasies, according to his blog "some boys' mothers are sugar and spice. Mine was - well - she was something else".

Harris, the author of the French sensations Chocolat and The Lollipop Shoes, has a talent for portentous prose, and BB's voice soon takes on the seductive cadences of her Gallic creations.

As the story of BB's damaged childhood unravels in cyberspace, his unreliability as a narrator becomes apparent. Harris's triumph is to incorporate email-speak into this tale of rural nasties without frightening the horses.