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ELee
Posts: 418
Registered: ‎10-26-2006
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Re: Early Chapters



pheath wrote:
I also found it interesting that Kim's age complicated the investigation. While I know that there have to be hard and fast rules for when someone is considered an adult vs. a child, I agreed with Ed and Fran that this should have been treated more like a missing child. It's a dilemma for which there won't be a perfect answer for all occasions.

I thought that interesting as well.  The conflict between chronological age and level of maturity was an issue here, and something that I think could be applied to the develpment of all the characters in general.
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kiakar
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Re: Early Chapters



KxBurns wrote:
What did you think of the early chapters of the book (Chapter 1 through Chapter 13)?
 
Karen


I do love his descriptive writing. It seems you can close your eyes and see each character after his description. Or each incident as it occurred. I had a sister growing up like Kim and Lindsay did and I know the love-hate relationship lives strong in you when you are growing up. But then she is your best friend usually afterwards. I did love the DQ Scene. I think too, that saids that basically, if you take all the teenage impulses away that girls go through with, Kim was a great kid with a good soul. Alot of teens would have barfed and declined the company of her younger sibling's driving lesson and especially a treat at DQ. Great novel.
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kiakar
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Re: Early Chapters

 
 
Does our impression of Kim from the first chapter change as we begin to see her through the eyes of friends and family? How does their view of Kim change over the course of these early chapters?
 
Karen



I didn't change my opinion of Kim.  To me, Kim was not an exception to the rules of normal teenagers. They go through so much in their life, that even if the parents cant admit it, I believe they all, cross the line on something because of this complexed age that we have to exist in, those troubling 13 through 18. years of age.  All of us have struggled I am sure. I will adnit it. And my girls struggled and thank god they turned out ok.  I really feel Kim would have turned out ok. also.
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kiakar
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Re: Early Chapters



thekoolaidmom wrote:
How would you describe their initial reactions?  I was suspicious of Nina, J.P., and Hinch's behavior.  I kept wondering what "the secret" was, and what did it have to do with Kim's disappearance.  I thought maybe they had something to do with it.
 
 
What scenes, moments, or exchanges struck you as meaningful? I was touched by the Dairy Queen scene with Kim and Lindsey.  I thought it was particularly accurate of an older sister, one minute hating her little sister other and the next minute buying her lunch and telling her she's going to miss her.  Another thing I personally loved was Cooper's response throughout it all.  You can tell he was Kim's dog first, and Lindsay's second. 
 
 


You know, when tragic things happen, we always look back on the last treasured thing that happened with that person. This to me is a gift from God. Something to lift the burden of loss.  Of course to her sister, she leaves a beautiful gift of the driving lesson and the treat at DQ.
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kiakar
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Re: Early Chapters




How would you describe their initial reactions?
 
 
I think her friends showed a sign of suspucious behavior.  Of course we later learn why. But I still think the reason her friends acted strange is not very clear, but we can discuss that later.



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kiakar
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Re: Early Chapters

 
 
 
 
How would you characterize Kim's home life and her social life?  I think Kim's family was a typical family, that America should be humble of. They loved, they laughed, they went to church, and tried to teach their girls morals. They both worked, making it difficult to enforce rules and behavior but I am sure both feeling they needed towork. out of thehome. Kim probably had to much freedom when she came home before her parents just as Lindsay said she liked coming home chilling before her parents came home. I guess this is good sometimes, but their minds get to restless with  a great number of hours by themselves. But Kim was very responsible, working a parttime job and she showed how much she loved her dog Cooper. Yes, Kim's friends, I would have wished for her better moral wise anyway. But that is something parents must learn also.  We cannot choose our kids friends. WE can point out certain things we would like for them to do but we cant critize and put to much emphis on their freinds not good enough for them to hang with. They will only rebell, I know. I have experienced this in raising my daughters. You just have to follow the situation really close and observe from a close range. I think Kim's parents, busy in their life, just gave it up to having faith and trust in Kim. Parenting is very hard and mistakes will be made.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Does our impression of Kim from the first chapter change as we begin to see her through the eyes of friends and family? How does their view of Kim change over the course of these early chapters?   I think like most people who are suddenly gone from our lives, there's always a bit of the selective memory process that remembers the good things about a person and forgets the bad.  There's a bit of hero build up that goes on, and I think some of that goes on here.  Plus there's a bit of guilt that they didn't know that makes Kim more of a martyr, too.



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kiakar
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Re: Early Chapters



crimefighter4444 wrote:
i think the nonchalant attitude of the police and the anguish it caused was the setting for the entire path of the story. the author set this trend brilliantly.

It is human nature to want to believe that a child just went away on her own or went to see a friend and didnt tell the parents. Not even law enforcements wants to think that a missing child, a fresh newly missing child is in trouble. Just look at how many teens rebell on the parents and go off. The character of teenagers itself, will convince us that a missing teen is not in trouble just off somewhere venting. And will soon wander on back the same as they were. It did seem Kim just vanished out of thin air, no one seen the car, noone saw her after the ronduvo at the river with her friends. She did go home, and changed into her work clothes. It seems by that, the authories should have looked for the sake of the family. This was a close community. The cop didnt give Kim a ticket because of knowing her dad so well.  But it didnt happen, but in a perfect scenario, it would have been nice if the cops had of looked and investigated before the time they had to.
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kiakar
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Re: Early Chapters



Everyman wrote:
At the same time, the police reaction was perfectly understandable. Most times when a teen aged girl from (as someone noted above) a mildly dysfunctional family giving inadequate attention to the daughter goes missing, it's because she has chosen to go off somewhere with a guy or to a big city or for some other reason of her own volition. it's perfectly reasonable for the police not to assume the worst right away.

And also, given the record of dysfunctional families, it's also entirely appropriate for them to wonder whether one or both of the parents had something to do with it.

I find the description of the official response to be very believable.

crimefighter4444 wrote:
i think the nonchalant attitude of the police and the anguish it caused was the setting for the entire path of the story. the author set this trend brilliantly.





I can't see that this family was dysfunctional. Maybe things have changed in families over the many years I raised my daughters but I do not think I would call this family dysfunctional at all. They loved together, played together. Times do change and the changes in this story was typical of working mom and working dad and children driving and so forth that can easily go wrong in a child's life but Dysfunctional NO,I will have to disagree.
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MARISSAD115
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Re: Early Chapters

I think the beggining chapters of O'Nan describing Kim and her homelife, her friends and her family helped paint the picture of Kim being the all-american teenage girl. Hanging out with your friends, maybe getting into soem mischevie however here Kim was dabbling in speed, working and saving money before she left her family and friends to go to college. I think he related a lot that goes on with teenagers and their parents such as fighting over if JP was a good influence or not for her, and her relationship with her sister that they were close but had their usual sibling differences.
 
I thought they day that Kim and her sister spent out driving and going to Dairy Queen was her way of showing her sister that even though they may not always get along she does love her and will miss her when she goes away to school. And I think it's even more touching that this moment was the last that Lindsay had with her sister, them bonding not fighting or any kind of regrets.
 
As far as the way the parents reacted when she first went missing, I think the police owe a lot of blame for not acting quickly enough to try and find Kim or even really help the family out. Kim's parents were organized and thorough in setting up searches and being connected to the media which a lot of family's are slow to do when given the same situation.
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bookhunter
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Re: Early Chapters



kiakar wrote:
How would you characterize Kim's home life and her social life?  I think Kim's family was a typical family, that America should be humble of. They loved, they laughed, they went to church, and tried to teach their girls morals. They both worked, making it difficult to enforce rules and behavior but I am sure both feeling they needed towork. out of thehome. Kim probably had to much freedom when she came home before her parents just as Lindsay said she liked coming home chilling before her parents came home. I guess this is good sometimes, but their minds get to restless with  a great number of hours by themselves. But Kim was very responsible, working a parttime job and she showed how much she loved her dog Cooper. Yes, Kim's friends, I would have wished for her better moral wise anyway. But that is something parents must learn also.  We cannot choose our kids friends. WE can point out certain things we would like for them to do but we cant critize and put to much emphis on their freinds not good enough for them to hang with. They will only rebell, I know. I have experienced this in raising my daughters. You just have to follow the situation really close and observe from a close range. I think Kim's parents, busy in their life, just gave it up to having faith and trust in Kim. Parenting is very hard and mistakes will be made.
 




This book was painful, painful for me to read.  It was just a little too close to home.  Kim and her family, friends and community were very realistic to my experiences and I saw myself and my family all over this book.  It was a very INTIMATE picture into the experience, and that is what made it painful for me. 
 
Like Kiakar, I thought Kim's family was perfectly "normal.".  They were not as close as they could have been, but were clicking along with their lives just the way the rest of us are.  What bothered me was how they were all in their own little world and no one knew everything that was going on it each one's lives.  No one but Ed understood what Ed was going through.  No one but Lindsey understood Lindsey.  Even "best friends" and spouses had things they didn't share.
 
Reading the book, we could find fault with that and say they should have been different, they should have made different choices, but....
 
I could say the same about you and you could say the same about me.
 
Ann, bookhunter 
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Kegsoccer
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Re: Early Chapters

I may be in the minority, but in the very first few pages I was too overwhelmed by details.  Once I got past those, and to the 'practicing driving' scene I was much more comfortable.  I thought that scene was particularly well done, giving us a glimpse of the sisterly affection.
 
I thought all the family/friends reactions were believable, but I was most interested in J.P.'s reaction and actions.  I thought the tension between him and the father worked really well, and his dedication to finding Kim was clearly shown.
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mwinasu
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Re: Early Chapters

I am having a real hard time responding to this book. Every time I sit down to reply the past raises a mournful voice and reminds me of the ones who used to be.   I have seen innocence destroyed for pleasure while  sluts prospered and children died.  I have known what it was like to worry about my missing child; so, even though this book may not be my idea of a great read , I appreciate  the author's compassion.

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cocospals
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Re: Early Chapters

Maybe it is just me....but I found things a bit too "normal" in these chapters. I agree with thekoolaidmom's answers to the questions. Kim and her friends were acting like normal teens (raised three myself), Kim and Lindsey's driving event was typical of the love/hate relationship you see in most siblings, and with any tragic situation people do only see the good in the person involved, never the bad.
Ability may get you to the top, but it takes character to keep you there - John Wooden
dg
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dg
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Re: Early Chapters

I think it all does seem very normal - that's what makes the book so difficult to read.  I really am enjoying the book but I actually that I almost dread finding out what has happened.  I've been very busy but I've been looking for every spare minute to pick the book up.  It almost feels like I'm following a local news story.  I think it really draws you in.
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vivico1
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Re: Early Chapters

KIM and her social life:
Kin seems to be a good kid, has plans for the future, hard worker, and these are the things her parents see. Kim tho is also just an average kid, well in some ways, I take that back and say, I know her activities are common, but I really hate to think of them as the average, the norm. Not all kids are into drinking, drugs, sex. But she is average in the sense that NO parent or adult really knows all a kid is into. Think about yourself as a teen. Most of our parents would have a fit at so many things we were doing. And now for her parents to start hearing these things, they have to start wondering, what else don't we know about her? Why didn't we know these things? Were we not good enough parents? Did we do or not do something that could have kept her from the bad things she was doing and thereby keep her from being taken? Parent can have such guilt about things that are their fault and things they have no control over, when it comes to their kids.

Kim and Lindsey:
I think their day out was pretty cool. Kim loved her sister, but maybe felt she didn't show it enough and she knew she would miss her when she went to college so its a good bonding moment. Some have said, its a good thing for Lindsay to have to look back on too, a nice last memory. That's true, but I think it serves another purpose in the story too. Just as the parents are looking back in their initial reactions, Lindsay wonders too if maybe her sister was saying goodbye and maybe did leave, with all the other things they find out. This could be a burden if its not settled later. Was my sister going to run away and that's why she was nice to me, to say goodbye? Could I have stopped her?

Jim and Nina and the others:
I think these kids were ok kids, fit pretty much the things I felt in these early chapters about Kim. They know its not like her to run off and not tell one of them, or to miss work and not call. This secret they have tho, I am wondering if its really something majorly important to what has happened to Kim, and they know that by not telling, they are keeping her from being found. Or, as others look back at there relationships too, is their reaction now, the "secret", more of something that just none of them should have been doing, and if she wasn't missing, wouldn't think much more about it other than one of those things that you dont want your parents to know, but now it seems huge. Smaller guilts becoming larger guilts because no one initially knows what to do, or was it something they did or didnt do. I think this is a common theme with most people around someone who goes missing, and we are seeing it in all who know her.
Vivian
~Those who do not read are no better off than those who can not.~ Chinese proverb
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kiakar
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Re: Early Chapters



dg wrote:
I think it all does seem very normal - that's what makes the book so difficult to read.  I really am enjoying the book but I actually that I almost dread finding out what has happened.  I've been very busy but I've been looking for every spare minute to pick the book up.  It almost feels like I'm following a local news story.  I think it really draws you in.



Yes, it is like a news story. You never read to much. You grasp at every angle of the situation. The wonder makes you so hungry for information on the story.  You cling to every word so as to understand exactly how this happened.  Like you said Doug, it draw you in.
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DSaff
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Re: Early Chapters



bookhunter wrote:

This book was painful, painful for me to read.  It was just a little too close to home.  Kim and her family, friends and community were very realistic to my experiences and I saw myself and my family all over this book.  It was a very INTIMATE picture into the experience, and that is what made it painful for me. 
 
Like Kiakar, I thought Kim's family was perfectly "normal.".  They were not as close as they could have been, but were clicking along with their lives just the way the rest of us are.  What bothered me was how they were all in their own little world and no one knew everything that was going on it each one's lives.  No one but Ed understood what Ed was going through.  No one but Lindsey understood Lindsey.  Even "best friends" and spouses had things they didn't share.
 
Reading the book, we could find fault with that and say they should have been different, they should have made different choices, but....
 
I could say the same about you and you could say the same about me.
 
Ann, bookhunter 


I agree with you, Ann. This book is a very intimate portrayal of a family in crisis, doing what a normal family would do. Search, create, hide, talk, question, study, get angry - all things I would think are normal anyway. As each entered their own personal hell on earth, they missed the personal journeys of those around them. I didn't think they were dysfunctional either. As I read the book I wondered how I would react to the situation.
DonnaS =) " Reading is a means of thinking with another person's mind; it forces you to stretch your own." Charles Scribner
"A book is like a garden carried in the pocket." Chinese Proverb
My blog: http://bookworm56.blogspot.com
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DSaff
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Re: Early Chapters



dg wrote:
I think it all does seem very normal - that's what makes the book so difficult to read.  I really am enjoying the book but I actually that I almost dread finding out what has happened.  I've been very busy but I've been looking for every spare minute to pick the book up.  It almost feels like I'm following a local news story.  I think it really draws you in.


And just like the local news story, I wanted to find her. I found myself wanting to comfort the family, to help search, to DO something.
DonnaS =) " Reading is a means of thinking with another person's mind; it forces you to stretch your own." Charles Scribner
"A book is like a garden carried in the pocket." Chinese Proverb
My blog: http://bookworm56.blogspot.com
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noannie
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Re: Early Chapters

I thought the time that the sisters spent together was very touching, now that Kim has disappeared. She seems to be a very normal teenager with her close friends, but she is keeping secrets from her family. I found it hard to connect with the mother, maybe because this book is written by a man. I didn't feel she grieved the way a normal mother would if her daughter disappeared without a trace. Did anyone else feel this disconnect or is it just me?
 
noannie
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Jo6353
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Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Early Chapters



KxBurns wrote:


What did you think of the early chapters of the book (Chapter 1 through Chapter 13)? These opening chapters deal primarily with the response of Kim's family and friends to her disappearance. How would you describe their initial reactions? What scenes, moments, or exchanges struck you as meaningful?


Are there any clues to Kim's whereabouts in the first chapter, in your opinion? How would you characterize Kim's home life and her social life?


Does our impression of Kim from the first chapter change as we begin to see her through the eyes of friends and family? How does their view of Kim change over the course of these early chapters?


Karen



Karen, Since the Chapters aren't numbered, could you give the title of what you're calling Chapter 13? It would make it a lot easier than going through the book counting titles. Thank you! Jo
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