Chia-chia lin

The children’s hour: first novels brim with close family observations

Kiley Reid’s Philadelphia-set debut, Such a Fun Age (Bloomsbury, £12.99), is a satire on white saviour syndrome, woke culture and virtue-signalling motherhood. That it manages this balancing act with such political finesse and humour is testament to the powers of its author, who, like her heroine Emira, the 25-year-old black baby-sitter, spent time nannying for white families. When Emira’s boss Alix calls her at a party and asks for some emergency childcare (after Alix’s home is egged, as a result of a racist gaffe made by her TV anchor husband), Emira drops everything. Short of money, about to lose her health insurance, she takes Alix’s daughter Briar to a ‘super-white’