Saturday, April 18, 2020

The Daughter She Lost - by Lauren Westwood

©Lauren Westwood
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Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Unless you've experienced finding out, as an adult, that you're adopted and have inherited a house from your deceased birth family in a far-away small town, then neither you or I can even begin to imagine the distress of Amanda Fielding.

The Daughter She Lost is a heartening tale of one woman's journey to discover her heritage. I enjoyed following along Amanda's narration as she connected to those in the town of Avalon Springs. While navigating the many trials of motherhood, Amanda launches her own investigations into what truly happened to her birth mother, Angie. She'd also intended to find out her late grandmother's secretive motives for giving Amanda up for adoption as well as uncovering the identity of her birth father. Eventually, she discovers that, sometimes, the truth can be a hard pill to swallow.

Westwood's writing brings about powerful emotions, as Angie's story is slowly unearthed. I was sad for her and everything she'd gone thru, only to be taken away too soon. While I did enjoy Amanda, overall, I do wish more time was spent on furthering the reader's connection with the supporting characters. I wanted to welcome Linda and Frances but found them hard to relate to, and a tad bit annoying. In retrospect, their personalities make a lot more sense after their histories come to light. The ending, however, came about differently then I had imagined, yet satisfying all the same... sometimes those are the best though, aren't they? The tales of unexpected solace.

I would recommend this book to the wanderers of the bookish world, not lost, but rather in search of a particular set of pages to get lost in... an ideal mix of contemporary women's fiction and suspense.

Thank you to NetGalley, the publisher Bookouture, and the author Lauren Westwood for providing me with a complimentary copy of this title in exchange for an honest review.

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BookBlurb
I know in my heart that I’m going to lose you, my dearest darling girl. I can’t fight any longer. No matter what I do, no matter how much I love you, I know that this is the end for me. But remember that I am with you always and that because of you, my mistake was worth it.

Amanda always knew she was adopted, but when she inherits a house in Avalon Springs, it’s the first she hears of her birth mother’s death. The moment she used to imagine meeting her for the first time and staring into the bright blue eyes they might share will always remain a dream.

Heartbroken, Amanda knows she must go there to show her children the home where they should have lived, to go through her mother’s old clothes, sell the house and say goodbye.

But as she walks into the stark white house, she begins to feel uneasy. There are religious quotes etched into the walls of the hallway and a jewelry box full of letters hidden in her mother’s room.

Because the family she lost is hiding dark secrets and the further she digs, the more the happy life she has carefully built for herself and her children is at risk…

A gripping and emotional novel about what it means to belong. The Daughter She Lost is perfect for fans of Kerry Fisher, Diane Chamberlain, and Liane Moriarty.

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About the Author, Lauren Westwood, from her website:
"Hi, thanks for looking up my website. Lauren Westwood is my pen name for writing women's fiction.

I write women's fiction books that combine mystery and romance, humour, intelligent heroines, and, of course, delicious heroes.

I'm originally from California, but I now live in England with my husband and three daughters. My debut novel, 'Finding Home,' was inspired by my family's property search when we moved out of London, that took over 3 years. We now live in a quirky old house built in 1602. I love reading and writing romantic mysteries.

I hope you enjoy my books, and I'd appreciate it if you could leave a rating or a review on the website where you bought it or on Goodreads. Thanks so much."

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