Shortlisted, Commonwealth Book Prize and the Queensland Literary Award 2012
When Simon and his parents arrive in the small town of Reception and check in to the Ottoman Motel, things between them are tense but normal. Then, while Simon is asleep, his mother and father disappear.
Are they lost? Has something terrible happened to them? Have they simply driven away and left him? All Simon knows is that he is alone in a strange town.
Madaline, the local police constable, is kind. Ned Gale and his kids give Simon a place to stay. In the bar down at the Ottoman, Jack Tarden and the other locals are sympathetic. But why does it seem as if no one is trying to find Simon's parents?
More than just an intriguing mystery, The Ottoman Motel is a novel about fear and loss, and human fallibility. With this assured, emotionally sophisticated debut, Christopher Currie proves himself to be one of the brightest young novelists in Australia.
‘Disturbing and exhilarating...A bold, assured and exciting debut.’ Matthew Condon
‘Currie gets the blurring of the creepy-friendly small town just right: as if an eleven-year-old boy walked into his own Wake In Fright.’ Malcolm Knox
‘Christopher Currie’s novel creates a brilliant atmosphere, layering superficial small-town charm over dangerous paranoia and criminal depravity. If its tautness slackens slightly later on, it remains an engrossing and deeply creepy read.’ Cameron Woodhead, Age
‘There is a Hitchcock-like eerie calm to this novel, a difficult mood that Currie captures well...As small plot points emerge, drip by drip, from Currie’s wonderful writing, the story takes on a chilling edge.’ Sunday Mail
‘The Ottoman Motel is an assured debut.’ Canberra Times
‘Chris Currie has written an excellent first novel in The Ottoman Motel, part thriller, part crime story and part analysis of the meaning of loss, all told through the eyes of a small boy.’ Otago Daily Times