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3.54  ·  Rating details ·  6,372 ratings  ·  702 reviews
15 Jahre ist es her, dass Ellie Winters verschwunden ist. Die Polizei glaubt, dass sie entführt und ermordet wurde. Ellies Schwester Madeline teilt die Meinung der Behörden. Doch Ellies ältere Schwester Caroline und ihre Mutter haben die Hoffnung nie aufgegeben, sie glauben, Ellie irgendwann wiederzusehen. Als die Mutter Ellie in einem Zeitungsartikel zu erkennen glaubt, m ...more
Hardcover, 299 pages
Published 2010 by Weltbild Verlag (first published 2004)
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3.54  · 
Rating details
 ·  6,372 ratings  ·  702 reviews

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Dec 13, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction-i-own
Pretty good chick-lit :) Had a twist in it I didn't see coming. Easy to read. Recommended if this is a genre you like.
Feb 19, 2008 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Stephanie by: Tiffani Nelson
It was hard to get into this book and once I finally did, the ending was a complete let down. So if you don't mind crappy endings and slow starts, this book is totally for you.
Sarah B.
Sep 20, 2009 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: given-away
Terrible writing. I recently heard the author Mavis Gallant say in an interview that she doesn't like reading her early writing because she used to be lazier about her language in a way that makes her cringe now. If Amanda Eyre Ward plans to continue her career as a novelist, she might want to start thinking about this sooner rather than later. Her prose is bland and artless. Sadly, so are her characters, each of which is a stereotype: the lonely mother who covers up her grief with overzealous c ...more
Jun 21, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Although it wasn't a very lengthy book (290 pages), I was amazed at how quickly I read it (I think it took 3 days). The story is immediately compelling: five-year-old Ellie disappears from her opulent Long Island hometown, destroying what little sanity her family has left and leaving her two older sisters to forever wonder what has become of her. Many years later, Caroline, the oldest sister, sees a picture of a woman she is sure is her missing sister and embarks on a journey in search of her.

Kathy Kubik
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 02, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favourite-books
My copy of Amanda Eyre Ward’s novel How To Be Lost came with an unusual guarantee: the publisher promised to refund your money if you didn’t like it as much as The Lovely Bones. I suppose at the time of its publication, comparison to the juggernaut that was The Lovely Bones would seem like high praise indeed. But I won’t be writing to collect my refund, thanks very much. I loved How To Be Lost and, in fact, I think I liked it even more than The Lovely Bones which, in my opinion, started off with ...more
Apr 05, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: just-fun
Wow, excellent book, goes straight to the top of my list (and the first book I've read in a while that I devoured). If I had started this at bed time, I would have read til 3 in the morning. As it was, I read it in one sitting on a long plane ride. Thanks Nadine for mentioning this book(and I'll return the LPL copy at the end of the week). I can't wait to read her first novel! And I hope she writes lots more. A terrific book about a women trying to come to terms with her dysfunctional family (ar ...more
Faith Spinks
A nice easy read that kept me turning the pages. Before I knew it I’d read the whole thing on my flight.

Nicely written and an interesting take on the kidnapped child storyline showing how so many stories intertwine to create the tragedy. A nice little ending too.
Mar 31, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I don’t think anybody needs help in figuring out how to be lost, but at one point or another we may need help figuring out how to be found, or how to find ourselves. Amanda Eyre Ward’s book, How to Be Lost, is the story of a woman in search of her lost sister who eventually finds herself.

Caroline Winters in the oldest of three sisters. She and her younger sisters live a seemingly charmed life in New York. The family lives in a beautiful home in an expensive neighborhood, but behind the closed f
Feb 21, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Caroline strained relationship with her mother puts her in a awkward position. While she is originally from New York, she moves to New Orleans for a simple life without the need to satisfy her mother. When she decides not to come home for the holidays, her mother is disturbed and will not settle for anything other than a yes. Giving in to temptation, she sucks it up and home. The bond of her family has not been the same since her sister Ellie disappeared years ago, the pressure to stay quiet is ...more
Oct 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was traveling last month and found this under the bed in a guest room where I was staying. I'm so glad I did! This is a lovely and well-crafted story about the scars of loss and the bonds of sisterhood, culminating in an ending that left me filled with hope. The shifts in time and perspective could be confusing but Ward handles them beautifully and the puzzle comes together elegantly, piece by piece, with the final one dropped into place only in the last few pages. A real gem.
Mar 14, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I tend to read several books at more or less the same time. It's no different, I often tell bewildered family members, than keeping track of the characters and story lines of TV series. However, once again, my progress in some of my other current reading options has been minimal, for, once again, Amanda Eyre Ward's story and characters and settings were where I preferred to be. Her stories are, for me, totally and enjoyably engrossing--and while each (How to be Lost and Sleep Toward Heaven and S ...more
Mar 27, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed the writing and flow of this book. It took just a little bit to get into the flow of the story-telling which changed throughout the book from one character's perspective, to another character's written correspondence, to a recounting of another set of characters' pasts. It was really interesting and kept my attention. Even when I felt like I understood the "mystery" of the book, I was intrigued and a bit on the edge of my seat to see how things would play out. Quite a few beauti ...more
Feb 08, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I felt this book lacked serious depth. Much of the search for the adult Ellie was unbelievable and seemed like a lot of good luck chances. The other part that bothered me the most was the actual transistion of the abduction. I realize that children abducted may eventually believe their new life is real, but even at 5, I don't think she would have believed that her name was different, and that her dad was different, and her mom was dead all on the first day. Although this part being told from the ...more
Apr 01, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Ian Laird
Mar 28, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
This is my first review on Goodreads so I hope it goes well - the standard is so high. Here goes...

Such an evocative word 'lost'. Gone, mislaid, a state of being no longer attainable, forgotten. A litttle girl is lost but her mum is also lost- in a different way. So are her sisters.

How to be Lost has a compelling idea at its core- but the unfolding story never quite matches the promise. Five year old Ellie disappears in unexplained circumstances and Amanada Eyre Ward examines the profound and c
Sep 27, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
So, I feel bad giving this a 2 star rating, because it wasn't a bad book. But the wording was pretty accurate that "It was ok." I think of that as similar to "It wasn't bad." I really feel that someone else might enjoy it a lot more because rather than a kidnapping story it's a story about the main character's relationships with her family and those around her after her sister's loss. However, I don't feel that point was driven home cleverly enough. In her journey to find her sister she encounte ...more
Sep 29, 2007 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book was a very quick, easy read. I would have liked to see more character development with several of the characters. Also, there were many parts of the book, other than the characters, that I was hoping for the author to expand upon that she didn't. I don't want to give details because it will ruin what there is to the book!

I am used to reading many books with very detailed description focused on character development. In a sense, the very things I wished for the author to expand upon in
Dec 02, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was really disappointed in this book. The premise was terrific -- two decades after the disappearance of her little sister, Caroline Winters sees a photo in a magazine that looks just like her missing sibling. After putting her life on hold (giving up Juilliard in favor of serving drinks in the Big Easy), Caroline must decide whether to give up the half-life she has in favor of finally discovering the truth about her absent sister.

The problem was that I didn't care about a single person in th
Jul 06, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I started and finished this book in one night. I have not done so in such a long time. Ms. Amanda Eyre Ward captured my attention with the first few chapters. There is a lot of flashbacks that help move the story along at a steady pace. It reminded me a bit of a lifetime movie that you happened to flip to and truly holds your attention to the very end. I enjoyed it for the most part, although at times I felt that some parts were rather rushed and was not a fan of how the ending. It just ended, j ...more
Jan 07, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A story about three sisters, Caroline who is a cocktail waitress in New Orleans, Madeline, pregnant, married and in New York and Ellie, the little sister who was lost when she was five years old. The book explores Caroline's journey to find her sister and herself. The book provides a few twists and surprises but the ending is trite, almost as though the author forgot to finish the book. My favorite line from the book (page 41): "When you are small, if you reach out, and nobody takes your hand, y ...more
Sarah Greene
Jul 02, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a really good book overall. Usually when I read a book I try to gain something out of it to make myself a better person; in this case, it was to appreciate my mother much more than I do. Other than that, it was sort of frustrating. The grammar bothered me, as did Madeline's moodiness. Caroline was, at best, forgettable. However, the plot twists were great, and I had many thrills getting thrown for a loop over and over again. The ending was awful; are you telling me that Madeline, Caroli ...more
I wish the whole book (or at least more of it) had been told from Agnes' perspective (view spoiler) Her letters were my favourite part and I would have loved more. Perhaps even the inclusion of her correspondence with her "Alaskan hunk" would have been a wonderful addition? I just didn't care as much for Caroline's character.
The story as a whole was somewhat lacking... The writing could have been better, as well. But it was an enjoyable, quick read and aft
Feb 20, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well-written, and interestingly constructed. I wasn't really grabbed by any of the characters though, despite it being a wrenching story. Too much drinking and smoking going on to make anyone truly likable! And Agnes was just weird. It reminded me a bit of a Jodi Picoult novel in terms of the storyline.

The best thing I can say is I read it in a day, it was almost unputdownable. And that means I read 2 books in one (otherwise busy) weekend. I haven't done that in the longest time, and it felt goo
Jan 15, 2009 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This book reads like a very good example of a college fiction writer's final class project. Which is nice for college, but not so much for a published work. Solid ideas, but mediocre execution. One of those books that makes you say, "Hell, I oughta write me somethin.'" I didn't care one whit about any of the characters. Heck, I never even felt like I got to know them, the writing was so superficial.
May 05, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I'm so mad at this book! I just re-read the back, where it tells you what it's about, and it's hardly like that at all. The story is completely Caroline's, and has hardly anything to do with Joseph, at least. I just feel like I got ripped the story wasn't complete. Most of the time I hate it when authors go too far in depth with their characters, but this book didn't go even an inch into depth, with the exception of Caroline. I feel like I'm missing half of the story!
Mar 14, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book had been on my shelf for some time. When I finally started reading it, it was obvious to me who recommended it. I like character driven novels, and every single recomendation by the owner of a local bookstore has been spot on. I couldn't wait to get back to the characters in this book and find where they were headed.
Found this buried on a shelf as we are cleaning out. Didn't remember whether I had read it or not...could be a bad sign. Thought that the storyline was interesting but the writing didn't thrill me. Quick and easy read for me on Christmas break for educational policy reading so at least entertaining.
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  • Girls in Trouble
  • Family History
  • The Book of Bright Ideas
  • Eye Contact
  • The Slow Moon
  • Pieces of My Sister's Life
  • The Good People of New York
  • An Actual Life
  • Daughter's Keeper
  • Things Unspoken
  • Blue Water
  • A Blessed Event
  • Somebody Else's Daughter
  • The Year of Fog
  • Chosen
  • Cold Rock River
  • A Theory of Relativity
  • Mothers and Other Liars
Amanda Eyre Ward was born in New York City in 1972. Her new novel, THE NEARNESS OF YOU, will be published on Valentine's Day, 2017. She lives in Austin, TX with her family.

“When you are small, if you reach out, and nobody takes your hand, you stop reaching out, and reach inside, instead.” 32 likes
“Is reading a sport?” 14 likes
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