Ruth Rendell's novels written as Barbara Vine resist easy categorization. They are nothing like the police procedurals of her Inspector Wexford series, nor are they more traditional novels of suspense such as her stand-alone titles. Instead, they could best be described as portraits of the psyche, often the psyche of deeply troubled or damaged individuals. In THE CHILD'S CHILD, certainly one of Vine's best recent novels, she continues this inward exploration even as she uses the book to explore social issues over time.
"Comparing the experiences of John and Maud with those of Grace and Andrew more than 60 years later offers much scope for thought and consideration about how far society has come --- and how far we still have to go."