The Boy in the Field

Margot Livesey. Harper, $26.99 (272p) ISBN 978-0-06-294639-3
Livesey (Mercury) serves up a distinctive blend of literary fiction and psychological thriller. It’s nearing the end of 1999 when teenaged sibling Matthew, Zoe, and Duncan Lang spot a boy, beaten and unconscious, in the outskirts of Oxford, England, after their father, Hal, fails to pick them up from school. The paramedics arrive and take the boy away in an ambulance, and the children rush home, realizing “something enormous” has happened. The event brings their statuses in the family into stark relief. Duncan, having been sent by his siblings to call for help, reckons with the “inevitability of being the youngest.” Matthew, the oldest, enamored by the heroes and villains of crime novels, wants to know who did it and why. Zoe follows men in Oxford streets, wondering if they were the perpetrators, and experiences a rude sexual awakening along the way (“You’re a hot little thing, aren’t you?” one says to her). Duncan, who’s adopted, believes finding information about the victim will help him in the search for his biological mother. Hal and his wife, Betsy, support their pursuits, which eventually drive the couple apart. Precise prose, cool observation, and tight pacing will keep readers turning the pages. This is a memorable twist on the coming-of-age tale. Agent: Amanda Urban, ICM Partners. (Aug.)
Reviewed on : 05/27/2020
Release date: 08/01/2020
Genre: Fiction
Ebook - 272 pages - 978-0-06-294641-6
Compact Disc - 978-1-0941-6907-1
MP3 CD - 978-1-0941-6908-8
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