Set in rural New York state at the turn of the twentieth century, The Kept is the superb literary debut by James Scott —a propulsive novel reminiscent of the works. Late in James Scott's first novel, “The Kept,” a brothel owner named London White summarizes the story as being about “children gone missing. Set in the barren, mid-winter landscape of western New York during the year , James Scott's debut novel doesn't wait around to get the.


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There was a problem adding your email address. Elspeth Howell is a midwife returning home after a monthslong absence. The only survivor is her year-old son who witnessed it all.

The answers he finds can be as unsettling as they are true. Beautiful writing and unforgettable characters mark this first novel that has been compared to the work of Cormac McCarthy and Michael James scott the kept.

I now add James Scott's "The Kept" to that list. Just brilliant, brilliant, brilliant. Since The Kept is not a Young Adult novel, did you have any apprehension about having an adolescent as one of the main characters?


What was the hardest part of creating Caleb as a twelve-year-old? I would have had reservations, perhaps, if he was the only character, but that was never really a thought.

That took some doing.

‘The Kept,’ by James Scott

james scott the kept Your other main character, Elspeth, is a woman. As a man, how did you prepare for exploring the mind of a woman? I try to think of all my characters not as belonging to this group or that group, but as individuals.

I think one can sometimes end up with flat characters in that way. As I read, I kept wondering if more historical context might have lent additional weight and strangeness to its already compelling motifs.

‘The Kept,’ by James Scott - The Washington Post

Instead, Scott wears history lightly, putting his characters front and center. For many readers, this may be the right choice.

When it comes to period specifics, a little goes a long way. He grows frustrated with the fact that their search for the killers has bogged down. Additionally, a few surprising realizations about his mother force Caleb to question their relationship, allowing Scott to weave a growing james scott the kept of questions about the nature of family in general.

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