Book Review: The Lost Ones by Sheena Kamal

The Lost Ones (Nora Watts #1) by Sheena Kamal
My rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟 (4 stars)
Publisher: William Morrow

Nora Watts is not the sort you'd call when you need help. She's in desperate need of help herself. Still, when the parents of the baby she gave up for adoption come calling, she's the only one with enough tenacity and single-mindedness to find her.

This was quite the read but what I found most compelling was Nora and the look in on homelessness, addiction and the invisibility of vulnerable communities (there wasn't even safe haven in hospital settings!). It's a harrowing take but one I was glad to have had the chance to take in. There's a bit of breath-taking action as well but for me, the best of the story was in the quiet moments with Nora's introspection that make this worth the read. I do admit that at some point, Nora's life borders on misery porn and wears one down but I felt that was a just feeling as a reader because homelessness and alcoholism struggles are bleak. The ending isn't so much happy as it is at an even keel and that felt like enough. I want to know more about Nora, her employers and even the homeless guy who lives in the alley she ran into a few times (I, like Nora, want to know who tried to take him away). That I ended up caring about seemingly random people who crossed Nora's path, was a credit to the writing and I remained hopeful for better things for Nora and all others who had dire situations and problems.

I'd recommend this and will be reading the rest in this series.

Summary: It's late. The phone rings.
The man on the other end says his daughter is missing.
Your daughter.
The baby you gave away over fifteen years ago.

What do you do?

Nora Watts isn't sure that she wants to get involved. Troubled, messed up, and with more than enough problems of her own, Nora doesn't want to revisit the past. But then she sees the photograph. A girl, a teenager, with her eyes. How can she turn her back on her?

But going in search of her daughter brings Nora into contact with a past that she would rather forget, a past that she has worked hard to put behind her, but which is always there, waiting for her . . .

In Eyes Like Mine (original title), Sheena Kamal has created a kick-ass protagonist who will give Lisbeth Salander a run for her money. Intuitive, not always likeable, and deeply flawed, Nora Watts is a new heroine for our time.

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