Book Review: The Finding of Martha Lost | Caroline Wallace
Martha is lost.
She’s been lost since she was a baby, abandoned in a suitcase on the train from Paris to Liverpool. Ever since, she’s waited in Lime Street Station lost property for someone to claim her. It’s been sixteen years, but she’s still hopeful.
In the meantime, there are lost property mysteries to solve: secret tunnels under the station, a suitcase that may have belonged to the Beatles, the roman soldier who appears at the same time every day with his packed lunch. Not to mention the stuffed monkey that someone keeps misplacing.
But there is one mystery Martha has never been able to solve - until anonymous letters start to arrive, offering hope that the past and the family she is so desperate to know might not be lost forever after all.
Time is running out, though - the authorities have found out about the girl in lost property, and if Martha can’t discover who she really is, she will lose everything…
A peculiarly charming story of friendship, fairy tales and finding your own sense of identity. Perfect for fans of Amelie, Hugo and Elizabeth is Missing.
I have never read anything quite like this magical book, what the author calls a love letter to Liverpool is one of those books that stays with you long after you finish reading the last page. From the beginning I was captivated by this wonderful story, the naïve yet charming and endearing nature of Martha is something go wonderful that even before you know it, you feel the magic that shines from her. She is a fountain of optimism that spills out into the people around her and we begin to see how Martha has, without realising it, built herself an oddball family of colourful and wonderful characters.
What she wants to know is why she is lost and she has the desire to find her birth mother. Martha has been led to believe that she was abandoned in a suitcase from Paris to Liverpool, and while it is obvious that such a train line as never existed, Martha still holds on to the fantasy of it all. She spends her days smiling at strangers wondering if they are somehow related, her desperation masked beneath her youthful determination and curiosity.
The author Caroline Wallace writes with magical flare, and manages to capture the characters, the story and Liverpool Lime Street station with such wonderful authenticity that you find yourself slipping easily into a thoroughly absorbing and pleasurable story.
This is the kind of book that I would urge everyone to read, not just those local to Liverpool but everyone who has ever felt even just a little bit lost, then this story will offer you a little bit of self-assuring magic and allow you to see yourself in a better light.
The power of words is something I have always believed in, and this story is a powerful one in such a way that it makes the reader question what they see in themselves and allows a re-evaluation of one’s own self-worth. Martha sees herself in such a way that allows us all to see ourselves with a little bit of magic.
A captivatingly beautiful tale of finding what was never really lost in the first place.
I gave this book a beautifully enchanting 10/10
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About The Author
Caroline Wallace worked as a lecturer for several years before turning her hand to fiction. She lives in Liverpool with her husband and their many children.
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