The Lost Daughter

Lucy Ferriss. Berkley, $15 trade paper (400p) ISBN 978-0-425-24556-9
This uneven novel follows a cast of vulnerable characters as they navigate lives littered with the tragic consequences of youthful mistakes. Brooke O’Connor has carried a secret for years: at the age of 17, she bore and abandoned a child behind a motel in Windermere, Conn. The act pushed her and her lover, Alex, apart; instead of going to college as she’d planned, Brooke found work at a plant nursery and married Sean, an affable Irish tenor prone to drink, while Alex went to Japan, married, and lost a son to a heart condition. Fifteen years later, Brooke and Sean have a precocious daughter and Sean is aching for another child. It’s around this time that Alex reappears. They return to the scene of the crime to seek closure and, Brooke hopes, save her rocky marriage. What she and Alex stumble across back in Windermere, however, pushes the reader’s suspension of disbelief to the breaking point. Ferriss (Nerves of the Heart) writes many lovely, poetic passages, but this maudlin tale, full of flawed souls flung implausibly together, relies on too many coincidences. Agent: Albert Zuckerman, Writers House. (Feb. 7)
Reviewed on: 12/19/2011
Release date: 02/07/2012
Genre: Fiction
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