One Boy Missing
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One Boy Missing

By (author) Stephen Orr

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'A sensitive and sometimes-moving look at a man drowning in the sorrows of his past, with a prickly relationship with his father and with a child who desperately needs to trust someone...A sweetly told tale of fatherhood and loss.' "Kirkus Reviews" It was a butcher who saw the man stashing the kid in the car boot. He didn't really know what he'd seen. Detective Bart Moy, newly returned to the Australian country town where his father still lives, finds nothing. Nobody reports a boy missing. Still, he looks deeper into the butcher's storyafter all, he had a son of his own once.When the boy does turn upsilent, traumatizedthings are no clearer. Who is he? Where did he come from and what happened to him?A mystery, a meditation on fatherhood, and an examination of love and loss. "

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  • Paperback | 288 pages
  • 152 x 232 x 24mm | 379.99g
  • 14 Jul 2015
  • Text Publishing Co
  • The Text Publishing Company
  • Melbourne
  • English
  • 1922147273
  • 9781922147271
  • 273,255

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Author Information

Stephen Orr is the author of several published works of fiction and non-fiction. His novel Time's Long Ruin was shortlisted for the Commonwealth Writers' Prize and longlisted for the Miles Franklin Award in 2011. He lives in Adelaide.

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Review quote

'A sensitive and sometimes-moving look at a man drowning in the sorrows of his past, with a prickly relationship with his father and with a child who desperately needs to trust someone...A sweetly told tale of fatherhood and loss.' Kirkus Reviews

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Customer reviews

excellent literary crime

One Boy Missing is the fifth novel by Australian author, Stephen Orr. Unable to put behind him the accidental death of his son, Charlie, and his subsequent divorce, Detective Sergeant Bart Moy returns to his rather dreary home town of Guilderton in outback New South Wales. His father, George is ageing and being there to help out is as good an excuse as any to escape the city. When the local butcher sees a young boy being roughly shoved into a car boot, the police are puzzled as no-one in town claims to be missing a child. While apparently only going through the motions with his duties much of the time, this case strikes a chord with Moy and he is determined to get to the bottom of the abduction. Interspersed into Moy's narration of present-day occurrences are the flash-backs to the events surrounding Charlie�??�?�¢??s death that constantly haunt him. The characters with whom Orr populates his novel will be familiar to many readers: the cranky old bloke (who is especially well-drawn); the nosy neighbour with the casserole offering; the laconic desk sergeant; the belligerent old hermit; the contemptuous young shop assistant; the apathetic cop. The dialogue is completely natural and the interactions between Bart, George and the boy are often funny and sometimes quite poignant. The feel of the country town and its inhabitants is expertly rendered. As well as exploring the father/son relationship, Orr touches on the destruction of reputation, the loss of a loved one, the sense of community and what it takes to become a "local", and loss of independence in ageing. This literary crime novel tootles along at country town pace then rushes headlong into a gripping climax. Fans of Orr's novels will not be disappointed with this one; newcomers to his work will no doubt seek out more of it.show more
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