Songs for the Missing: A Novel
4.5 out of 5: Very early in Songs for the Missing, a popular high school senior (Kim Larsen) goes missing. The rest of the book explores the impact of Kim’s disappearance on her family and close friends. As usual, O’Nan gives us likeable characters we really care about. Throughout Songs, O’Nan cultivates a pervading (and unsettling) sense of suspense while also taking time to explore the inner workings of Kim’s well-drawn family members and friends. As I read more O’Nan (first Last Night at the Lobster, then The Good Wife, and now Songs), my respect for his writing grows. O’Nan’s prose is plain but it communicates complexity, and O’Nan’s unfailing sympathy for his characters comes through in every page. Songs is my favorite O’Nan novel so far.