Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

The Last Child by John Hart

The Last Child (edition 2010)

by John Hart

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
1,6421774,393 (4.07)151
Title:The Last Child
Authors:John Hart
Info:Minotaur Books (2010), Edition: 1 Reprint, Paperback, 432 pages
Collections:Your library

Work details

The Last Child by John Hart

  1. 20
    Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn (jlparent)
    jlparent: Both are rather dark and disturbing in tone and plotlines. Also try Flynn's "Dark Places" in a similar vein.
  2. 10
    Blacklands by Belinda Bauer (terran)
    terran: A young boy searches for the body of a relative and is involved in finding the killer.
  3. 22
    The Client by John Grisham (VictoriaPL)
  4. 00
    Judas Child by Carol O'Connell (VictoriaPL)

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 151 mentions

English (175)  Danish (1)  German (1)  All (177)
Showing 1-5 of 175 (next | show all)
There are many things to like about this mystery. The dimensionality of the characters is strong, as are their motivations and inner worlds. There are multiple villains, covert and overt. The pain suffered by the survivors of a terrible, violent crime is vividly and fully rendered. Surprisingly, a boy--the twin of the crime victim--escapes his grief by obsessively seeking the perpetrators and takes risks and experiences danger that his youth is not even able to recognize. Yet, he is the central character around which the action moves. The story is almost told in real time, and one viscerally feels the corrosive effects of an unsolved crime on the police tasked to solve it. Like a losing sports team, an unsolved major case causes locker-room arguments and doubts. Eventually, however, all is resolved, and yet this is a major weakness. Given the level of detail that precedes the conclusion, the resolution is unsatisfying and forgettable. With its slow pace, the reader spends a good deal of time in a small town in the South; and then suddenly all is understood and the town fades into memory. The book deserved a deeper, more resonant ending, one as rich as the crime reporting and the responses of family and police to new revelations. ( )
  neddludd | Jan 9, 2017 |
Edgar Award winner. Johnny's sister is missing and his Dad took off and did not come back. This is the basis of Hart's latest mystery novel. Johnny is only 12 but does everything like he is 18 or more. I like much of the writing in this book, however I think he gets a little dark at times . ( )
  pgabj | Aug 26, 2016 |
I tore through this book in one day. It was really smart and the plot line was tight from beginning to end. This book reminds me of the books that Harlen Coben used to write. ( )
  Maureen_McCombs | Aug 19, 2016 |
A good story, richly southern gothic. The clumsy writing style is straight out of Dan Brown, though. I don't understand why these authors feel that they need to end every paragraph with three one-word sentences. "Midnight. Dawn. Six times, A dozen." What in blue blazes is that? The second half of the book really tightens up, though. It's as if the author found his voice and didn't feel the need to lean on clumsy old Dan Brown any more. Turns into a top notch detective story where the pieces all fit. ( )
  5hrdrive | Jun 26, 2016 |
It is a brilliant, yet horrible book. John Hart has managed to create a young hero who has not only suffered greatly since his twin sister went missing, but who continues to suffer whilst doing everything in his power to discover what happened to her. Johnny Merrimon believes that he can find his sister when the police, including Detective Clyde Hunt, have not been able to do so. Hunt begins to believe that Johnny is on to something when a man claiming to have found a girl dies in mysterious circumstances. Johnny's mother, Katharine, convinced that her husband, Johnny's father, ran away because he just could not cope with his daughter's disappearance, has received unpleasant and unwanted attention from local millionaire, Ken Holloway, who must be the most despicable and hateful character created in a long time.
There is great development in the storyline of this book, and, despite many, many unpleasant and unhappy things taking place, the reason for my description of the book as horrible, there is some hope and some redemption at the end. Levi Freemantle is a very important participant in the story, with links to the slaving history of the area, but there is a high level of mystery about him, most of which is explained, though not quite all.
I was engrossed. ( )
  Alan1946 | Jun 25, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 175 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
This book is for Nancy and Bill Stanback, Annie and John Hart, and Kay and Norde Wilson. Parents, friends, trusted advisors.
First words
Asphalt cut the country like a scar, a long, hot burn of razor-black.
Darkness is a cancer of the human heart.
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Publisher series
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (1)

Book description
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0312642369, Paperback)

Winner of the 2010 Edgar Award for Best Novel

John Hart’s New York Times bestselling debut, The King of Lies, announced the arrival of a major talent. With Down River, he surpassed his earlier success, transcending the barrier between thriller and literature and winning the 2008 Edgar Award for best novel. Now, with The Last Child, he achieves his most significant work to date, an intricate, powerful story of loss, hope, and courage in the face of evil.

Thirteen year-old Johnny Merrimon had the perfect life: a warm home and loving parents; a twin sister, Alyssa, with whom he shared an irreplaceable bond. He knew nothing of loss, until the day Alyssa vanished from the side of a lonely street. Now, a year later, Johnny finds himself isolated and alone, failed by the people he’d been taught since birth to trust. No one else believes that Alyssa is still alive, but Johnny is certain that she is---confident in a way that he can never fully explain.

Determined to find his sister, Johnny risks everything to explore the dark side of his hometown. It is a desperate, terrifying search, but Johnny is not as alone as he might think. Detective Clyde Hunt has never stopped looking for Alyssa either, and he has a soft spot for Johnny. He watches over the boy and tries to keep him safe, but when Johnny uncovers a dangerous lead and vows to follow it, Hunt has no choice but to intervene.

Then a second child goes missing . . .

Undeterred by Hunt’s threats or his mother’s pleas, Johnny enlists the help of his last friend, and together they plunge into the wild, to a forgotten place with a history of violence that goes back more than a hundred years. There, they meet a giant of a man, an escaped convict on his own tragic quest. What they learn from him will shatter every notion Johnny had about the fate of his sister; it will lead them to another far place, to a truth that will test both boys to the limit.

Traveling the wilderness between innocence and hard wisdom, between hopelessness and faith, The Last Child leaves all categories behind and establishes John Hart as a writer of unique power.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:14:08 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

After his twin sister Alyssa disappears, thirteen year-old Johnny Merrimon is determined to find her. When a second girl disappears from his rural North Carolina town, Johnny makes a discovery that sends shock waves through the community in this multi-layered tale of broken families and deadly secrets.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 3 descriptions

LibraryThing Early Reviewers Alum

John Hart's book The Last Child was available from LibraryThing Early Reviewers.

Sign up to get a pre-publication copy in exchange for a review.

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
20 avail.
137 wanted
1 pay1 pay

Popular covers


Average: (4.07)
0.5 1
1 4
2 15
2.5 7
3 79
3.5 42
4 237
4.5 56
5 171

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.


You are using the new servers! | About | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 114,522,650 books! | Top bar: Always visible