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Songs for the Missing by Stewart O'Nan
Songs for the Missing begins with 18-year-old Kim Larsen leaving a swimming hole where she'd spent the afternoon with friends and going to her job at a convenience store. Unfortunately, she never arrived and no trace of her could be found. Her father, Ed, drives all over looking for her and throws himself into every attempt to learn her fate. Her mother, Fran, distributes flyers and appears on television shows to plead for help in finding Kim. Her 16-year-old sister, Lindsay, tries to find a focus for her life now that she's no longer able to hide in Kim's shadow. Over the next two years, the family tries to cope with their grief, the information they receive - often from psychics or crazy people, and deal with their strained relationships among themselves. Stewart O'Nan's novel has received positive reviews with the Washington Post saying, "The world that O'Nan captures thwarts our expectations for cathartic tragedy or gleeful celebration, which makes the story even more devastating. This isn't the nightmare of losing your daughter; this is the numbing reality of it."