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Preview — The Missing by Tim Gautreaux
Sam Simoneaux’s troopship docked in France just as World War I came to an end. Still, what he saw of the devastation there sent him back to New Or...more
Returning to the U.S., Sam attempts to make a life for himself and his young wife by working as a floorwalker at a la...more
Several weeks ago, I went blog surfing and ended up on a marvelous site called "Dew on the Kudzu" where the blogmaster was celebrating the discovery of a wonderful novel entitled "The Missing" by Tim Gautreaux. I read one paragraph of the review and knew I wanted to read this novel and immediately ordered it for my Kindle. Well, kind hearts, you must read this book! I not only read it....I reread it! Please read it and come back to this blog and talk abo...more
The book is very much about family and the connections between famil...more
Reviewers appreciated not just the prose and the characters of The Missing but also how different it was from most contemporary novels. While much fiction today revels in ambiguity and irony, Gautreaux's story has an overall moral theme about justice and revenge. That's not to say it's a sermon, however: several critics compared the book to an adventure novel. They also appreciated the book's unusual pacing that "carries us along as it branches and swells, as if inspired by the great river on wh...more
The novel weaves several stories into the main story - Sam feels guilty for losing the child and after he loses his job because of it, he signs on to work the ferry boat with the girl's parents and...more
Again this goes horribly wrong when a little girl disappears in the store, and Sam handles things badly, leading to the sack. He decides to...more
This is also a great story. It's set in the 1920's, the last days of the big steam paddle wheel boats that rode up and down the Mississippi. Sam takes a job on one of the boats. He's lost his job because he was partly responsible for the kidnapping of a young girl. He thinks he'll be able to help locate her somewhere up and down the river. A lot happens and he's able to find...more
Having lost a child himself, he is anguished by the parents' pain. He accepts a job, joining them on a steamboat providing entertainment along the Mississippi waters. Sam f...more
Other reviewers have described the plot, so I won't do that in detail here, as for me the books haunting and lyrical quality comes from the authors exquisite use of language.
One line I will remember forever is when Sam meets the 15 year old August and he describes the boy as someone who "breathes in knowledge and breathes out accomplishment".
So much said with so few words, and this is the tenor of the book throughout.
The main character...more
His descriptions of the steam boat were thorough, but could've been shaved down to more basic descriptions.
I was a bit annoyed by the parts that were in French, because I don't speak it. I would've liked it better if he would have added contextual clues to those parts so I could've made more sense of them.