A Stranger in the Family

A Stranger in the Family

Book - 2010
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From Robert Barnard, the internationally acclaimed Diamond Dagger--winning crime writer . . .

Kit Philipson has always felt like something of a stranger in his family. Growing up as the only child of professional parents in Glasgow, Scotland, he had every advantage. His mother was a teacher; his father, a journalist, escaped from Nazi Germany at the age of three on one of the 1939 Kindertransports. But on her deathbed, Kit's mother tells him he was adopted and that his birth name was Novello. Soon, vague memories of his early life begin to surface: his nursery, pictures on the wall, the smell of his birth mother when she'd been cooking. And, sometimes, there are more disturbing memories--of strangers taking him by the hand and leading him away from the only family he had ever known. A search of old newspaper files reveals that a three-year-old boy named Peter Novello was abducted from his parents' holiday hotel in Sicily in 1989. Now the young man who has known himself only as Kit sets out to rediscover his past, the story of two three-year-old boys torn from their mothers in very different circumstances. Kit's probing inquiries are sure to bring surprises. They may also unearth dangerous secrets that dare never be revealed.

With sharp wit and deep insight, Robert Barnard sweeps away all preconceptions in this powerful study of maternal love and the danger of obsession.

Publisher: New York : Scribner, c2010.
ISBN: 9781439176740
Characteristics: 250 p. ;,23 cm.


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Mar 27, 2019

Much as I love Robert Barnard, this book is disappointing. The main character has very little character, his quest is tedious, and the book's ending trails off into nothing much. A great deal is said about people who took advantage of German Jews in World War II and about the Italian Mafia; the book might appeal to a reader who cares about those topics.

Oct 23, 2017

Although there is not an actual detective in the story other than the main character himself, who on his own goes about solving the mystery surrounding his abduction at the age of three.
And what an engaging mystery it is.

boonerator May 20, 2011

Barnard writes the most enjoyable stories around. Not really detective stories, not much violence but the untangling of threads and some very acutely observed characters. And he is prolific to boot, always a good thing when you find a favorite writer.

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