BOOK REVIEW: The Lost Apothecary by Sarah Penner

Title: The Lost Apothecary
Author: Sarah Penner
Publication: March 2, 2021
Publisher: Park Row
Genre: Historical Fiction
Pages: 320

SYNOPSIS: (From Goodreads)

Rule #1: The poison must never be used to harm another woman.

Rule #2: The names of the murderer and her victim must be recorded in the apothecary’s register.

One cold February evening in 1791, at the back of a dark London alley in a hidden apothecary shop, Nella awaits her newest customer. Once a respected healer, Nella now uses her knowledge for a darker purpose—selling well-disguised poisons to desperate women who would kill to be free of the men in their lives. But when her new patron turns out to be a precocious twelve-year-old named Eliza Fanning, an unexpected friendship sets in motion a string of events that jeopardizes Nella’s world and threatens to expose the many women whose names are written in her register.

In present-day London, aspiring historian Caroline Parcewell spends her tenth wedding anniversary alone, reeling from the discovery of her husband’s infidelity. When she finds an old apothecary vial near the river Thames, she can’t resist investigating, only to realize she’s found a link to the unsolved “apothecary murders” that haunted London over two centuries ago. As she deepens her search, Caroline’s life collides with Nella’s and Eliza’s in a stunning twist of fate—and not everyone will survive. 


**A copy of this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.**

When I got the list of new books from Harper Collins and saw this book on the list and read the description, I knew that I had to read it.  It sounded like something that was right up my alley.  I love historical fiction and I love to find new authors as well.  I was excited to start reading it.  

Caroline is on her dream vacation.  London England.  However she is alone.  The day before the trip to celebrate her 10th wedding anniversary she found out that her husband had been cheating on her.  She was devastated. in 1791, Nella makes poison for women to seek revenge on husbands and lovers that have wronged them.  Along the way she meets Eliza who comes to get a poison for her mistresses husband.  Eliza and Nella are thrust together in way they didn’t know would happen.  In the present Caroline finds a jar at low tide that came from Nella’s shop.  Caroline sets out to find where the jar came from and unearths a truth that has been hidden for a long time.  This book was so good. I caught myself sneak reading it at times during the day.  I binged read the last section which was about 35% of the book.   

I really loved the authors writing style.  I was kept engaged the entire story.  I was really intrigued with the Nella and Eliza storyline.  I really wanted more of there story.  While I liked Caroline’s storyline as well but the other one was my favorite. I spent all of Caroline’s storyline mad at her husband for treating her the way she did.  The ending had me so happy with the Nella and Eliza storyline.  I was happy with Caroline’s as well but was sad for her at the same time.  She thought she had her life planned out but I am happy with what happened with her instead.  I cheered her when she took control back with her life and followed a dream.  I will be waiting for this authors next book, I will certainly read anything else she writes. 


Pick up your copy of The Lost Apothecary by Sarah Penner on Amazon, Barnes and Noble and check your local bookstores. Also make sure to add it to your To Reads list on Goodreads and leave feedback for the author when you are finished. If you want to know more about author Sarah Penner, check out her website HERE.

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