49 pages 1 hour read

Zadie Smith

NW

Fiction | Novel | Adult | Published in 2012

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Part 5

Chapter Summaries & Analyses

Part 5 Summary

Back home, in their bedroom, Natalie has left a note of apology and/or explanation for Frank. He prepares to go out for the day, however, and leaves the letter unopened. Ruminating on the breakdown in their marriage and relationship, Natalie believes “[t]hat this was her life now. Two silent enemies shepherding children to their social appointments” (389). With Frank out, Natalie is left to handle their children on her own for the day. Uncomfortable with this in general and in particular given her marital discord, she decides to take them to carnival to keep them occupied.

She sees a newspaper headline mentioning a killing on Albert Road, near where Natalie was during her wanderings with Nathan. A picture in the story shows a Rastafarian man holding a picture of his adult son. Natalie can read the name “Felix” from a picture within the picture, and she recognizes him as a resident of Caldwell, though she does not know him personally.

Michel calls Natalie, in great distress. He says that Leah seems to have shut down after being upset about photos she had developed at a pharmacy—the same ones that she believes show Shar. Michel also discovers the birth control pills that Leah has been taking, and that their package has Natalie’s name on them.

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By Zadie Smith