By Stewart O'Nan
(Picador, Paperback, 9780312422769, 320pp.)
Publication Date: October 2003
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Arthur Parkinson is fourteen during the dreary winter of 1974, experiencing the confusing pangs of adolescence and the pain of his parents’ divorce. His world is shattered further by the sudden and violent death of Annie Marchand, his beloved former baby-sitter. Narrated by the adult Arthur, who continues to be haunted by memories, the story of a young man’s unraveling family and the circumstances leading up to Annie’s death forms the backdrop for an intimate tale of the price of love and belonging, told in a spare, translucent, and unexpectedly tender voice.
Stewart O’Nan is the award-winning author of A Prayer for the Dying, Snow Angels, A World Away and, most recently, Wish You Were Here. Granta named him one of the Twenty Best Young American Novelists. He lives in Avon, Connecticut.
"A thriller of the heart, at once suspenseful and emotionally absorbing." --Newsday (New York)
“Beautiful and harrowing...An exquisite double helix, each of its two strands the tale of an unraveling family, curving in tenuous but essential relation to the other." --Elle
"Stunning...A truthful and deeply sad picture of the American hinterland, which has lost religion and maybe also lost its capacity for sustained love....Wonderfully effective...O’Nan sees with a vengeance." --The New York Times Book Review
"Haunting...a whole that's much more than the sum of its parts...Moving, beautifully constructed, morally complex." --The Washington Post Book World
"Shines with a cold, stark light...Strangely beautiful." --Los Angeles Times