What Was Lost By Jean Levy – A Review

Publisher: Dome Press

Publication Date: 13th September 2018

Firstly I adore the cover of this book.  I usually don’t like ‘real’ photo images of ‘real’ people on book covers (I’m fussy…..hell we ALL are right? We all have our little foibles), but this one is so captivating.

When I read the blurb I was intrigued. It sounded right up my street. When children’s author Sarah Blake is found unconscious on a beach, with a broken arm and no memory of her adult life, her life is handed over to various doctors and specialists who are drafted in to help her piece together her memories. They hope that they will be able to fill in enough detail to ascertain why Sarah went missing for 2 days and figure out what brought about her subsequent memory loss.

The story starts at the point at which Sarah is released from the hospital having spent some considerable time recuperating and relearning some vital skills.

The decision is taken by the doctors to strip back Sarah’s life, remove most of her belongings from her home and depersonalise it. The reasoning being that she must learn about herself with no outside input. She must not be fed any memories, told what has happened to her in her adult life and have no contact with the people she knew before the event which left her unconscious on the beach that day.

Sarah is only left with snapshots of her childhood memories and must try to piece together fragments to form pictures of her parents and grandmother.

When out shopping in the supermarket one day she meets a man called Matthew who then seems to take a shine to Sarah and wants to become involved in her life. With Matthews help Sarah starts to question her doctors methods and starts trying to recover her memory in her own ways.

When piece by piece, fragments of Sarah’s memory start to return she is confronted with some shocking revelations about her own life and just exactly what happened on that fateful day leading up to her being discovered on the beach.

This book is gripping from the outset. Totally intriguing and sucks you right in. Riddled with unreliable narrators (which we all know I absolutely adore in a book!) it keeps you fully on your toes at all times.

The author has definitely done her research in terms of the medical terminology and the methods used within neuroscience (which are absolutely fascinating by the way).

It is a fairly long book at 400+ pages and could perhaps have been a little shorter but this didn’t detract from my reading experience.

I would highly recommend this one to anyone who loves a fast paced thriller full of twists and turns that constantly keeps you on the back foot. It is quietly unsettling and has you questioning everyone’s motives and what they could potentially be hiding. Not least Sarah herself!

What could be more compelling than trying to figure out who’s telling the truth and who wants the best for Sarah.

This is an accomplished, thrilling debut from the author and it has made me excited to see what she gives us in the future!

You definitely need to check it out!

Thank you as always to Dome Press for the advanced copy.

See you soon.

Bookish Chat. Xx

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