April 5, 2019
The Library of Lost and Found by Phaedra Patrick
Genre/Categories: Contemporary Fiction, Books About Books, Family Life, Sisters
Thanks to #NetGalley #HarlequinBooks for a free e copy of #TheLibraryofLostandFound by #phaedrapatrick in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own. *This post contains Amazon affiliate links.
Martha Storm volunteers at the library, and she spends much of her free time selflessly helping others. In fact, she keeps meticulous lists of her projects in a Wonder Woman themed notebook (which we might call a bullet journal). Even though many people depend on her to help them out with small projects, Martha doesn’t have many friends and feels “invisible.” Her routine at the library and hours of service to others take a dramatic turn when a mysterious book arrives for her and Martha is determined to solve a family mystery that surrounds the book.
Book About Books. Any time a book is described as a book about books, count me in! The library is one of the many settings in the story, the book club members are colorful characters, and the mysterious book of fairy tales that Martha receives is a predominant theme/mystery in the story. Some of Martha’s back story is revealed through the fairy tales in the mysterious book.
Martha. If a book about books is appealing to me, so are quirky characters. Martha Storm is now in my collection of memorable quirky characters who bravely confront circumstances and make changes to live their best lives.
Metaphors. The fairy tales in the mysterious book are metaphorical, and I feel like the entire story could be a metaphor for life. Without giving a spoiler, it especially struck me that Martha’s entire experience in the water can be seen as a metaphor for depression and hopelessness…..or hitting bottom…..and then the healing process follows as she receives TLC from a friend, gains strength, and finds reasons to hope in the future.
Writing. In this engaging, heartwarming, and charming story, the writing is honest, gentle, and uplifting. I feel that one of the author’s purposes in writing is to show how people from emotionally abusive childhoods and who have lost themselves in service to others, can find themselves again and create meaningful and hopeful futures. Although Phaedra Patrick creates believable and well drawn characters and the settings are filled with vivid details, sometimes the transitions between events could have been smoother.
Themes. Important themes include gaining confidence, finding your voice, friendship, family secrets, sibling relationships, importance of grandmothers, selflessness and care taking, trust, controlling husbands/fathers, and taking risks.
Recommended. I recommend The Library of Lost and Found for fans of books about books, for readers who love quirky characters, for those who love metaphor, and for readers looking for a nice change of pace in their reading material. This would make an excellent book club selection for its discussion possibilities.
My Rating: 4 Stars
Meet the Author, Phaedra Patrick
Phaedra Patrick studied art and marketing and has worked as a stained glass artist, film festival organizer and communications manager. She is a prize winning short story writer and now writes full time.
She lives in the UK with her husband and son. The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper is her debut novel.
Facebook – Phaedra Patrick – Author
Do you love books about books?
Do you like quirky and colorful characters in your stories?
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