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Publisher's Summary

'He didn't have to be normal, the boy realised. He just had to pretend.'

It's winter in Melbourne, and Detective Emmett Corban is starting to regret his promotion to head of the Missing Persons Unit, as the routine reports pile up on his desk.

So when Natale Gibson goes missing, he's convinced this is the big case he's been waiting for - the woman's husband and parents insist the devoted mother would never abandon her children, and her personal accounts remain untouched.

But things aren't all they seem. The close-knit Italian family is keeping secrets - none bigger than the one Natale has been hiding.

Just as the net seems to be tightening, the investigation is turned on its head. The body of a woman is found...then another.

What had seemed like a standard missing person's case has turned into a frightening hunt for a serial killer, and time is running out.

But to really understand these shocking crimes, Emmett and his team will need to delve back through decades of neglect - back to a squalid inner-city flat, where a young boy is left huddling over his mother's body.... 

©2020 Katherine Firkin (P)2020 Penguin Random House Australia

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What listeners say about Sticks and Stones

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Clunky

Fairly obvious plot with obvious misdirections. The characters are tepid so it’s difficult to care what happens to them.

6 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Best read in a good while....

With so many books morphing into the same format these days.... this was a refreshing change... loved it. Being from Melbourne it was even better to know exactly where the various scenes were. Interesting and well worth the read.

6 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Really Good

Held my attention until the end. Great twists and turns throughout. Initially the story required some concentration to work out the relevance of all of the characters and storyline’s introduced in each chapter.

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Engaging story from Melbourne

An engaging story that is hard to turn off. There is a true to life feel in the Melbourne setting and in the flawed characters and relationships. I look forward to hearing other books by this author.

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

good book

I was loving this till two thirds of the way through it was 5 stars. Not sure if I missed something but it got a little cluttered at one stage and harder to follow.

1 person found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Did not live up to expectations!!

Very confusing, too many side stories and characters. Some eventually tied in to the story, but some never did and I couldn’t understand why they were there.
Narrator not good, was looking forward to the end of the book so I didn’t have to listen to his voice. Only reason I persevered was that I had returned my previous book and I felt it wasn’t appropriate to return two in a row !!!

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Kept me guessing who was the villain

Katherine kept me intrigued all the way through listening to the book. The evolving story and how they were connected had me guessing and changing my mind right till the end

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