WINNER OF THE EDGAR AWARD, THE MACAVITY AWARD, THE ANTHONY AWARD, AND THE BARRY AWARD FOR BEST PAPERBACK ORIGINAL
NOMINATED FOR THE 2015 LA TIMES BOOK PRIZE
With the compelling narrative tension and psychological complexity of the works of Laura Lippman, Dennis Lehane, Kate Atkinson, and Michael Connelly, Edgar Award-nominee Lou Berney’s The Long and Faraway Gone is a smart, fiercely compassionate crime story that explores the mysteries of memory and the impact of violence on survivors—and the lengths they will go to find the painful truth of the events that scarred their lives.
In the summer of 1986, two tragedies rocked Oklahoma City. Six movie-theater employees were killed in an armed robbery, while one inexplicably survived. Then, a teenage girl vanished from the annual State Fair. Neither crime was ever solved.
Twenty-five years later, the reverberations of those unsolved cases quietly echo through survivors’ lives. A private investigator in Vegas, Wyatt’s latest inquiry takes him back to a past he’s tried to escape—and drags him deeper into the harrowing mystery of the movie house robbery that left six of his friends dead.
Like Wyatt, Julianna struggles with the past—with the day her beautiful older sister Genevieve disappeared. When Julianna discovers that one of the original suspects has resurfaced, she’ll stop at nothing to find answers.
As Wyatt's case becomes more complicated and dangerous, and Julianna seeks answers from a ghost, their obsessive quests not only stir memories of youth and first love, but also begin to illuminate dark secrets of the past. But will their shared passion and obsession heal them, or push them closer to the edge? Even if they find the truth, will it help them understand what happened, that long and faraway gone summer? Will it set them free—or ultimately destroy them?
Edgar Award finalist Berney (Whiplash River) will raise a lump in the throats of many of his readers with this sorrowful account of two people's efforts to come to terms with devastating trauma. In 1986, Wyatt Rivers worked at an Oklahoma City movie theater that was hit by gun-wielding robbers who massacred the staff, but, for some reason, let Wyatt live. A month later, 12-year-old Julianna Rosales attended the Oklahoma State Fair, where her older sister, Genevieve, walked off into the night, never to return. In 2012, those tragedies still preoccupy Wyatt and Julianna. Wyatt, now a PI, gets a case that takes him back to Oklahoma City, where he can't help reliving the night of the massacre. Meanwhile, Julianna, now a nurse, is obsessed with pursuing any possible lead to her sister's fate, and gets new hope of a breakthrough when someone posts online an image from the last evening she saw Genevieve. The leads' struggles are portrayed with painful complexity, and Berney, fittingly, avoids easy answers.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Really great read. Only annoyance is every description of the black people in the book was so stereotypical/ borderline racist.
Not just another PI mystery.
While reading this book I often found myself marveling at what the author had accomplished. It has as a central character your typical PI, smart, funny, tenacious, and flawed. But he has a secret that is disclosed early in the story, and it changes everything. The other main character, a nurse, has her own mystery to solve. The 2 intersect twice, solely by happenstance, neither time contributing to the plot. Both are driven by their pasts to search for answers. The answers come at the end, but they were not the crux of the story. Instead it was how the pain of the past consumed the two and their path thru it. Beautifully told story.
The long and faraway gone
Great book. The two stories were perfect together. I didn’t think it was too long.