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April 5, 2020

The Lost Orphan by Stacey Halls ~ a Review

by MK French

Bess Bright returned to London's Foundling Hospital in 1794 intending to retrieve the daughter she had left there six years before. To her shock, someone pretending to be her had already claimed her daughter. Nearby, the reclusive widow Alexandra is convinced by her close friend, a doctor at the Foundling Hospital, to take in a nursemaid to help her raise her young daughter.

Amazon affiliate links are used on this site. A free book was provided for an honest review.

April 2020; MIRA; 978-0778309321
audio, ebook, print (352 pages); Gothic romance
It's heartbreaking to see what Bess has to go through as a working eighteen-year-old, giving up her daughter the very day she is born and then going back to work the next day. She scrimped and saved for years in order to reclaim her daughter and provide a place for her, only to find out that her daughter was claimed by someone else the day after she had been left there. Bess came back looking for an explanation and found her daughter with her former lover's wife. Alexandra is a recluse by choice, fearful of the outside world, being touched, and hadn't ever relished the idea of relations with her husband. She saw it as normal, given her brother-in-law's infidelities being excused by her sister, and preferred to have her neat and orderly life on schedule, even if it meant that she constrained her daughter and belittled the young girl's boisterous energy and need for companionship. It's a different kind of prison than Bess had lived through, indicating that money and status didn't always provide additional opportunities.

We discover more about Alexandra in the final third of the book, which is when Bess makes her move. There isn't anything neat and orderly about any of this for Alexandra, and it gives little Charlotte an eye-opener into a life that isn't so easy as it is for those of Alexandra's position. The final conclusion was a surprise for me, and really shows the love of a mother, whether biological or adoptive and how that love can shape children and their future.

Buy The Lost Orphan at Amazon

Born and raised in New York City, M.K. French started writing stories when very young, dreaming of different worlds and places to visit. She always had an interest in folklore, fairy tales, and the macabre, which has definitely influenced her work. She currently lives in the Midwest with her husband, three young children, and a golden retriever.

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  1. by keeping mentioning the final conclusion, you have made me very curious
    sherry @ fundinmental

  2. Wow, being fearful of the world is an intriguing concept for a novel. Thanks for sharing , keep safe