Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Songs for the Missing by Stewart O'Nan

Songs for the Missing (edition 2008)

by Stewart O'Nan

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
7248312,977 (3.56)132
Title:Songs for the Missing
Authors:Stewart O'Nan
Info:Viking (2008), Edition: Paperback Book Club, Paperback
Collections:Your library, To read, Kindle

Work details

Songs for the Missing by Stewart O'Nan

Recently added byalo1224, e-zReader, INorris, Eye_Gee, CorTim2
  1. 52
    The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold (JGoto)
  2. 10
    Mystic River by Dennis Lehane (BookshelfMonstrosity)
  3. 00
    Place Last Seen: A Novel by Charlotte McGuinn Freeman (EnriqueFreeque)
  4. 00
    Unstolen by Wendy Jean (LynnB)
    LynnB: Both books deal with the impact of a missing family member on those left behind.
  5. 00
    The Year of Fog by Michelle Richmond (ForeignCircus)
    ForeignCircus: Another haunting tale of a missing child.
  6. 00
    What The Dead Know by Laura Lippman (ForeignCircus)
    ForeignCircus: Another haunting tale of a missing child.
  7. 01
    The Weight of Silence by Heather Gudenkauf (ForeignCircus)
    ForeignCircus: Another haunting tale of a missing child.
  8. 01
    The Abortionist's Daughter by Elisabeth Hyde (verenka)
    verenka: Both books deal with a family falling apart because of the violent death of one member.

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

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 132 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 82 (next | show all)
A taut story that gives a sense of story weaving against a constant unknown. Showcases the talent of a brillant writer ( )
  Craig_Pratt | Nov 29, 2016 |
I would read a phone book written by Stewart O'Nan. He knows just the perfect detail to include to immediately draw the reader in and identify with his characters and their experiences. This novel is about the aftermath of the disappearance of an 18-year old girl. The different ways in which her parents, and her sister, and her friends cope with her absence and the mystery surrounding it, are illustrated in vignettes told from various perspectives. What I loved was how the characters were all distinct and how O'Nan gave them each their own story but ultimately brought them all to the same place, as if acknowledging the importance of the paths we take, as opposed to the destination we come to. ( )
  katiekrug | May 15, 2016 |
Grief and hope quietly take over the life of a family waiting to learn what happened to their daughter. Just weeks before she is to leave for college, she vanishes. O'Nan portrays the emotional roller-coaster family and friends experience between the time she disappears and the time of her return (do not worry, that was not a spoiler). Despite the subject matter, this story lacks a key element - the ability to evoke empathy. The reader does not feel the depth of the family's or friends' pain. It is a fundamental component that takes away from the quality of O'Nan's narrative. This is usually where the author excels. As a result, the novel drags on, leaving the reader bored through out most of the book. It is unfortunate, I have come to expect more from him. ( )
  BALE | Mar 4, 2015 |
This is a moving book about the loss of a loved one. The plot is centered around a missing teenage daughter, but it's more about what the girl's family and friends go through as a result of her disappearance than it is about the mystery of what's happened to her. It's not the easiest book to read because it's certainly not uplifting, but O'Nan takes a profound look at the interconnectedness of family and friends and the aftershocks of loss. This book raises questions like, is it better to know hope is lost, or to continue hoping when hope should be gone? A wonderful book. ( )
  KatieCarella | Apr 12, 2014 |
I've often thought that novels conveniently focus on characters who don't seem to need to worry about ordinary things, like paying the bills, or who have regular jobs. Regular, everyday people, in other words. This novel does just that. It tells the story of very ordinary people experiencing a truly awful situation: the disappearance and possible murder of a young woman close to them. Although it begins with her experiences and POV prior to disappearance, this really isn't her story. It's the story of her parents, sister, boyfriend, and best friend as they experience her loss. It took several attempts before I could fall into this story, perhaps I just had to be in the mood for it. But once I did, I found it interesting enough to keep me going, but still oddly unsatisfying. I suspect that this is because the characters were just what I thought I had wanted. Very ordinary people. I couldn't feel any emotional connection with any of them, perhaps because it focuses mostly on what they do, and what they don't feel. We hear little of their interior dialogue. I still don't really understand their motivations and can only guess at them. In the end, the story just ends. No idea what happens in future, and I find myself not really caring, either. Overall, the time spent on this book was worthwhile, but I don't think I'd recommend it as a good read to others. ( )
  PortM | Nov 30, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 82 (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
Information from the Russian Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
Original publication date
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Someday I'll wish upon a star
and wake up where the clouds are far behind me. Where troubles melt like lemon drops, away above the chimney tops that's where you'll find me.
For Trudy and Caitlin and Stephen
First words
July, 2005. It was the summer of her Chevette, of J.P. and letting her hair grow.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Publisher series
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English


Book description
“It was the summer of her Chevette, of J.P. and letting her hair grow.” It was also the summer when, without warning, popular high school student Kim Larsen disappeared from her small Midwestern town. Her loving parents, her introverted sister, her friends and boyfriend, must now do everything they can to find her. As desperate search parties give way to pleading television appearances, and private investigations yield to personal revelations, we see one town’s intimate struggle to maintain hope, and finally, to live with the unknown.

Stewart O’Nan’s new novel begins with the suspense and pacing of a thriller and soon deepens into an affecting family drama of loss. On the heels of his critically acclaimed and nationally bestselling Last Night at the Lobster, Songs for the Missing is an honest, heartfelt account of one family’s attempt to find their child. With a soulful empathy for these ordinary heroes, O’Nan draws us into the world of this small Midwestern town and allows us to feel a part of this family.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 067002032X, Hardcover)

Returning again to the theme of working-class people and their wrenching concerns, Songs for the Missing begins with the suspenseful pace of a thriller, following an Ohio community?s efforts to locate a young woman who has gone missing. It soon deepens into an affecting portrait of a family trying desperately to hold onto itself and the memory of a daughter whose return becomes increasingly unlikely. Stark and honest, this is an intimate account of what happens behind the headlines of a very American tragedy.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:17:23 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

After eighteen-year-old Kim Larsen disappears, her family endures the horror of not knowing her fate.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 4 descriptions

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
18 avail.
35 wanted
1 pay

Popular covers


Average: (3.56)
1 2
1.5 2
2 21
2.5 6
3 60
3.5 45
4 79
4.5 12
5 26

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 | 116,048,705 books! | Top bar: Always visible