Review: The Finding of Martha Lost by Caroline Wallace

The Finding of Martha Lost by Caroline Wallace
Published by Transworld Publishers
Released 18th May 2017
320 Pages

Thank you to the publisher for sending me this book via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Martha is lost.

She’s been lost since she was a baby, abandoned in a suitcase on the train from Paris. Ever since, she’s waited in station lost property for someone to claim her. It’s been sixteen years, but she’s still hopeful.
In the meantime, there are 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 cannot solve. And now the authorities have found out about the girl in lost property. Time is running out - if Martha can’t discover who she really is, she will lose everything…

I had been wanting to read The Finding of Martha Lost for a while. As soon as I read the description a few months ago I knew it was something I had to read. I'd read a few of Caroline's other novels so knew what I would be letting myself in for. As soon as I received my copy I dived in and I'm so glad I did. 

Martha Lost is lost. She's been lost ever since she was a baby when she was supposedly abandoned in a suitcase on the train from Paris. She was taken in by a cruel, strict lady she calls 'mother' who makes Martha's life miserable. When tragedy strikes, Martha facing eviction from the lost property office she calls home, goes on a mission to find out who she is and where she really came from. This is in between finding secret tunnels under Lime Street Station, making friends with a roman soldier and learning about a suitcase that could have belonged to The Beatles...

I absolutely adored this book! It is a heartwarming, beautiful read that takes you on a magical journey all under one location. I don't know any other author who could make a story set in a train station as mysterious and enchanting as Caroline has done. I never thought a train station could feel so cosy but with all friendship, love and hope that is packed into this book it has finally been made possible.

The Liverpudlian setting was genius and the time the story takes place - the seventies was so original especially with regards to the plot line. As someone who was born in the nineties, it was fascinating to read all about what life could have been like in that part of the country during the decade of 1970's. The real life references to The Beatles and Mal Evans, Liverpool winning UEFA cup and the sacred places within Liverpool made it feel all so real. You could really tell through the story telling that Caroline was and is still proud of her northern roots. 

Martha was an adorable character. Yes she was rather naive at times but this just added to her likability as a character. Her positivity was catching and when she cried I cried. I became so emotionally invested in her and her journey as a whole. Her love of books was something that stood out to me throughout the whole story. The way that she thought a book had a variety of stories connected to it was something that stuck with me, being an avid book lover. She was such a joy to read about and her friendships with the station workers such as Elisabeth, George Harris and William brought such bliss. I would love a friend like Martha.

The Finding of Martha Lost was such a delight to read. It took me on a magical, heartwarming journey one that I didn't want to end. Caroline has written an outstanding novel and I can certainly say that I will be reading it again. Fabulous.


Author Bio

Caroline Smailes' acclaimed debut novel, In Search of Adam, was published in 2007 (The Friday Project/HarperCollins). The Big Issue North declared the book 'an engrossing and touching read from a new talent'. Since then Caroline has written four additional novels. These include Black Boxes, international bestseller Like Bees to Honey, an experimental digital novel with eleven endings 99 Reasons Why and modern day fairy tale The Drowning of Arthur Braxton (all HarperCollins). The film of The Drowning of Arthur Braxton is in post-production, with an expected spring 2017 release.

Caroline lives in the North West of England. She is also known as Caroline Wallace (The Finding of Martha Lost). She is head of book editing at BubbleCow.

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