The Lost Apothecary by Sarah Penner
A debut novel by @sarah_penner_author published in the UK in March, this is a book I have seen constantly both in the press and on #bookstagram featuring on the New York Times bestseller list and loved in the USA.
Set between historical and contemporary timelines we follow three women, Caroline, an American aspiring historian, escaping marital woes in London who discovers a small blue vial leading her to a 200-year-old mystery involving Nella, a secret apothecary and Eliza, a young maid that becomes embroiled in the dispensing of poison to women.
This is a highly commercial, easy summer read that is light and paced. Blending historical fiction with elements of a thriller, I liked the different turmoils present in the lives of all three characters. There were nuanced moments of more serious themes, but at its beating heart this is a story about women asserting autonomy in their futures which resonated.
I enjoyed reading this, a favourite moment was the exploration of the morality of murder that encompasses Nella’s work and life. The desperation of the three women, their vulnerabilities and reliance on others was cleverly used in the plot and it was easy to follow during the switch between storylines.
Fave quote: “You cannot be betrayed by someone you do not trust”.
If you have read this I would love to know what you thought! Happy Monday guys.
Ad: Pr Gifted copy of this book from @legend_times