- Unknown Binding
- ISBN-10: 0440423465
- ISBN-13: 978-0440423461
- Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
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Among the Missing Unknown Binding
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More About the Author
Morag Joss grew up on the west coast of Scotland. She read English at St Andrews University and then studied singing at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama in London.
In 1996 she won an award in a national competition with her first short story. Starting to write was, she says, "discovering a lifelong ambition I didn't know I had."
The first of her three Sara Selkirk novels, FUNERAL MUSIC, was nominated for a Dilys Award by the American Independent Mystery Booksellers Association. She's also the author the 2003 Silver Dagger winner HALF BROKEN THINGS, which was adapted for UK national television and starred Penelope Wilton (available on DVD), and of THE NIGHT FOLLOWING, which won an Edgar Allan Poe Award nomination for Best Novel 2009.
Morag Joss was a Heinrich Böll writer in residence on Achill Island, Ireland, in 2008, where she wrote part of her seventh novel, AMONG THE MISSING, due for USA publication in autumn 2010.
Top Customer Reviews
SPOILER ALERT. Silva comes unhinged and takes the baby to the middle of the river with the intention of drowning them both. Annabel is bleeding--"too much blood"--on the shore after delivery. At the last minute, Silva makes a call to Ron, saying... well, we never find that out, but Ron does come to the rescue, with Annabel's estranged husband in tow. He apparently rescues Silva and the baby, and the last thing Annabel hears are male voices and people sloshing ashore. The end.
Now, I don't require that stories be tied up in a bow at the end; some ambiguity is fine. But I would have liked to know a little more! Annabel could have had some conflict about Ron vs Colin, and that could have been left unresolved... but did she live or die, for heaven's sake? Does Silva come back from the brink? Has Ron's relationship with the two women changed him so he is able to live in the world, or does he just fade back into the night?
If the author is setting up for a sequel, that's kind of a cheap trick. And if not, couldn't she have written one more chapter?
This book charts the intersection between an illegal immigrant family and a middle-aged woman who finds herself unexpectedly pregnant. The lives of all are intertwined when a Scottish bridge collapses, destroying one family and creating a new one.
The writing is haunting, evocative and almost poetic at times. Joss has a tremendous gift for taking an unlikely scenario and making it seem not only plausible but downright historical -- you're surprised to remember that this didn't really all happen.
A very well-written book, with an ending twist that one can't possibly review, which is frustrating, as I would so like to know what other readers thought!
The primary characters in the books are damaged people with poor social skills. Ron is a former bus driver, recently imprisoned for causing an accident in which a pregnant woman and six children were killed. Abandoned by his friends and family, Ron becomes a drifter, finding solace only in driving. "Annabel" is a middle-aged woman who, after spending most of her life alone and caring for her parent, marries a man she meets in an on-line chat room. Unused to being with people, and longing to be loved, "Annabel" unexpectedly becomes pregnant, only to learn her new husband is adamantly opposed to having children. Silva is a married woman with a young, adored child, working for a pittance at a small, untidy store. Silva and her husband are also illegal immigrants and homeless, sheltering in an abandoned squat.
These three very different people are thrust together when a local bridge collapses. Silva's husband and child are missing but not counted among the dead; "Annabel" is counted as missing but is actually at Silva's house, and Ron, finding work locally, also begins helping the two women and inserting himself into their lives. As the story progresses, "Annabel's" pregnancy becomes obvious, Silva slowly begins to go mad with loss, and Ron begins to find a place in the world.
The eventual ending is simultaneously violent, uplifting, and tragic. Although I didn't always enjoy reading Among the Missing, the story and the characters are not ones easy to forget.
Chapters written in the first person from the perspective of each woman, interposed with chapters written in the third person that focus on Ron, skillfully engage readers by meting out insights into the characters' lives and thoughts, gradually revealing what they are and are not capable of and how they change within the action of the book. Joss uses the natural environment -- particularly the river -- and the man-made environment -- particularly the re-building of the bridge and the "homes" where the women live -- to underline the emotions of her characters; both environments impact the characters' thoughts and actions.
The novel is reminiscent of Sophie Hannah, Minette Walters, Tana French, and other authors who are so skilled at hooking readers on characters. Although the title of the book seems straightforward early on, its meaning can be interpreted on several levels. The book raises a number of issues, including if and how individuals can change and how our involvement with self colors the way we view others.
Among the Missing is a difficult book to review without giving away too much of the plot. The novel is both psychological study and psychological thriller.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The characters were very real, as was the plot, but the ending was terribly disturbing. It didn't seem to fit what we had learned about the charactersPublished 11 months ago by floellin
Great story but unfinished ending made me uncomfortable. Great detail with characters brings them to life.Published 17 months ago by Laurs R. Romero
It seems like I’ve been reading many less than happy novels lately and, Among the Missing, is a book that falls into that same class. Read morePublished 20 months ago by My 2 Cents
Super book. It was like listening to poetry. I couldn't take a break from the last 45 min. I will be looking for another book to read from the author.Published 21 months ago by G. Dudley
When I read fiction I consider the time well spent if the characters are both believable and interesting. I feel duped if the characters are inconsistent as in this tale. Read morePublished on January 21, 2014 by Rick Baartman
I recently finished listening to the audio version of this book. It was a very compelling and well-written book with intricate plot turns. Read morePublished on March 1, 2013 by F.Lea
I thought that the book was interesting, yet sometimes it was somewhat slow. When I got to the end of the last chapter and turned the page thinking there was more and it was the... Read morePublished on January 4, 2013 by Maureen Berent
Morag Joss is a master of the language. She's worth reading if for no other reason than how she uses language to reveal the dimensions and shadings of the ordinary. Read morePublished on December 15, 2012 by Stephen Foehr
What better way to disappear off the face of the earth and drop out of sight than during a natural disaster or horrific event. Read morePublished on October 19, 2012 by Ray J. Palen Jr.