About the Book
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 first became aware of this novel earlier in the year from another blogger review that coincided with seeing a flyer on a visit to a Liverpool bookshop about an event that was taking place with the author. I was a week early for the event, the book still hadn’t been published and I put it to the back of my mind after a bit of grumbling. But on my most recent visit to the same bookshop I came away with a signed copy of the book.
What a buy! This novel is one of the best books I have ever read. I warmed to Martha, Elisabeth, William and George from the moment I met them. I loved the Liverpool humour and loyalty that appeared on nearly every page. It was a joy to read a novel where a character could put aside any revulsion they felt about appearance and offer the hand of friendship.
I had to remind myself that the novel was set in the 1970s and not modern day. William was still a young man and the war wasn’t that long ago. Attitudes were different, illegitimacy would have been more taboo than it is now and shame would have been more common. I loved the references to the Devil, all his children and their pets and how Mother used them as threat against Martha who did very well to survive the brainwashing and outbreaks of violence.
If you fancy a read that restores your faith in humanity in this often cruel world then you won’t go wrong with this. Beautiful and magical.
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