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The Girls with No Names

4.06  ·  Rating details ·  10,157 ratings  ·  1,193 reviews
The Girls with No Names pulls readers into the gilded age of New York City in the 1910s, when suffragettes marched in the street, unions fought for better work conditions—and girls were confined to the House of Mercy for daring to break the rules.

Not far from Luella and Effie Tildon’s large family mansion in Inwood looms the House of Mercy, a work house for wayward girls.
Paperback, 336 pages
Published January 7th 2020 by Park Row
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Average rating 4.06  · 
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Sep 08, 2019 rated it liked it
1910-1913, New York: A world where men hold the upper hand. Values are changing with the turn of the century. Women are still fighting for their rights. A young female can be sent away or imprisoned for nearly any act of defilement or unbecoming behavior.

Told from three different viewpoints, the story begins through the eyes of Effie, a twelve-year-old growing up in a wealthy household but constrained to a strict set of principles and rules. Longing to hold on to their Victorian values, her fam
Jan 12, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction, edelweiss
3.5 stars

Right off the bat, I have to say that I had mixed feelings about this book – which is why, as I sit down to write this review, I’m struggling a bit trying to figure out how best to begin. In reading the summary, I thought this would be a story centered around the historical House of Mercy, which was a sanitorium of sorts that had once existed in the Manhattan area of New York back in the early 1900s. To the public, the House of Mercy was a religious institution whose purpose was to “res
This book definitely made me glad I was not alive in the 1910s! This is not the first book I’ve read during this timeperiod where women are treated abysmally. Sent away to “Holmes“ simply for not conforming too the rules men in Society and their families believe they should live by. These homes are one step away from prison. The women are treated poorly, punished harshly, and worked hard. I’m glad that there are books like this, because the things these women went through should not be forgotten ...more
Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews
Effie and Luella lived a privileged life and had to conform to all the strict rules set upon women in the 1910's including being sent away.

Effie was the sister who had a health problem, and Luella was the sister who was beautiful. Both behaved, but were bored with their lives and the control their parents had over them.

One day the sisters were at lunch with their father and witnessed something he did that shocked and upset them. What they found out, made Luella become rebellious.

Luella being the
I finally understood what my fortune meant....I was bone and skin and earth and sky. Death was not literal, Time was infinite, my Existence..eternal.

Set in the early 1900s, a time of great change and social reforms, The Girls With No Names is the story of young girls, some wealthy and other travelers or from among the working poor. It is a brilliant example of all that was wonderful and horrific about "the gilded age."

Luella and Effie Tildon are children from a wealthier family. Their lives are
3.5 stars

The Girls with No Names takes the reader back to a time where women were still fighting to be heard. The Women's Suffrage movement was just starting to make headway. But women were still beholden to the patriarchal standards of society. If a woman did not conform, rebelled or acted "inappropriately" she could be sent away to a sanitorium. One of these houses for wayward women was the House of Mercy on 86th St and 5th Ave. in Manhattan. Its public aim was to rescue women from vice but in
Brooke - One Woman's Brief Book Reviews

**3.5 stars**

The Girls with No Names by Serena Burdick. (2020).

**Thank you to Harlequin Australia for sending me a free advance readers copy of this novel; published 20 January 2020**

Luella and Effie live in a large family mansion near the House of Mercy, a workhouse for wayward girls. The sisters know that even though they are wealthy, freedom comes with limits. After discovering a secret about their father, Luella becomes emboldened
Jan 06, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: review-copies
The Girls With No Names gets ALL the stars from me! I couldn't put it down and finished it in three sittings. Throughly enjoyed the writing style and found the storyline extremely intriguing. I found the characters were very well written and interesting. I also appreciated how real this story was, so believable and at times relatable.

I really enjoyed the information after the story regarding the House Of Mercy and plan on doing my own research to learn more.

Huge thank you to NetGalley, Harlequ
Apr 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
In the early 1900s, America like the rest of the world was going through significant cultural change. The rise of the suffragette movement had brought the topic of women's rights into public consciousness. But for many, this was still a period of great cruelty toward young girls and women with New York's House of Mercy being a beacon of the time, housing wayward girls and treating them in ways that would be totally unfathomable today.

It would be in the giant shadows of this institution that we a
4.5 ★

Set in New York City in the early 1900s, Effie Tildon lives with her affluent parents and older sister, Luella. Born with a heart condition, Effie was sheltered from physical activity, but substituted such adventures by writing stories. At 13, the dynamic in Effie’s family started to change leaving Effie feeling bewildered. In search of answers, Effie is thrust into a world where consequences are grave and reliance upon her own inner strength is paramount.

“I viewed the world through the
Genre: Historical Fiction
Type: Standalone
POV: First Person - Multiple

Effie and Luella Tildon grew up in the New York high society. Stifled by family expectations, they found an escape among the gypsy group nearby. But freedom had new meaning when it was no longer an option.

At some point through all of this, I realized that my birth hadn’t been enough to fulfill them, and my existence wasn’t enough to keep them going.

The 1910s New York setting gave readers an insight into both high
Donna Wetzel
Nov 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: first-reads
Thanks Goodreads for my copy of The Girls With No Names by Serena Burdick. This was one of the best books I have read in quite some time. I finished this book in two days so to say it was difficult to put down would be an understatement. The characters came to life and emotionally pulled you in to their world. Thanks Serena for a great read.
Jun 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I’ve read a number of books that take place during the gilded age but have to say that this was a favourite among them. This story delves into various scenarios related to how women were treated during the early 20th century. It was a time of change in which women were fighting back (think suffragettes), for the right to vote, for their independence and for the ability to make their own choices within society. It was also a time in which women and children were expected to live by a moral code o ...more
3.75 stars

Effie and Luella are sisters. On Jan 1, 1900, Effie was born with a heart defect and they didn’t think she’d live long. She has, however, made it to 14 years old when the two sisters discover the gypsies living nearby. Luella, being a risk-taker, convinces Effie to come with her to visit regularly. When Luella disappears, Effie needs to find her! Effie is convinced her parents found out about the gypsies and have deposited Luella into the nearby “home” for wayward girls, the House of M
Apr 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I received a free e-copy of The Girls with No Names by Serena Burdick from NetGalley for my honest review.

Effie and her sister Luella are separated at a young age. This story explores the dynamics of their family after s secret is revealed. Both girls run off and Effie inadvertently ends up at the House of Mercy . It is a home for unwanted girls. Unfortunately, the girls are abused mentally and physically. Effie finds herself in a situation so bad that she isn't sure how or if she will get out o
Feb 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
This is Historical Fiction set in the 1900's in New York. First, I want to say that I loved-loved the descriptive strokes in this book. WOW. WOW. The author's writing was a little haunting as she put depth and shadow into the details. She went the extra mile without being redundant or super flowery and I loved paying attention to this. That part was 5 stars for me, because I could read this again just for that.

I was immediately drawn into the story. The sisters were two very different characters
Jul 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing

The above image is the House of Mercy in 1932.

Effie's story caused anxiety for me worrying about what would happen to her while she was trapped in the House of Mercy. You know that it is not the type of place you want to be and you definitely don't want to get into trouble while you're there. Stories like this make me ever so grateful that I did not grow up during this time period when women could be sent away for the tiniest infraction of social norms or even being accused of unacceptable b
Kris - My Novelesque Life
2020; Park Row/Harlequin

For some reason, I had a notion that this novel was about Suffragettes. It is about women, and their struggles in America during the 1910s. Specifically, this novel takes place in New York and is about the House of Mercy. The House of Mercy is a place where young girls and women are placed for the littlest infraction. Any sexual act could land a girl in this place that punished them with long hard hours in the laundry. The money does not go back into the
Amanda - Mrs B's Book Reviews
Mar 15, 2020 rated it really liked it

My introduction to the writing of Serena Burdick came courtesy of 2020 HQ Fiction publication, The Girls with No Names. Set in a time of upheaval in the US, Serena Burdick’s new novel exposes the tragic world of female work houses. This heartbreaking hidden history opens our eyes to a most regrettable chapter in early twentieth century New York.

‘In 1891, the House of Mercy, a notorious asylum for “destitute and fallen women,” stood on the highest point of Ma
Jan 06, 2020 rated it it was ok
Please Note: I received an advance copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This did not influence the opinions in my review in any way.

I feel very conflicted about this book. On the one hand, this is an historical fiction novel that is rich with details. Many of the characters are quite compelling. And the subject matter, the House of Mercy (which was a prison for women and children disguised as a place to help these people), is a part of history we should all know abo
Mar 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
To learn about The House of Mercy, the asylum for fallen women at the center of Serena Burdick's beautiful novel, was truly eye opening for me. The stories of the women in the asylum broke my heart but the stories highlight the strength, resilience and grit of these women who are bound to survive and rise above all this injustice and cruelty. Burdock wrote a well researched historical fiction novel in its finest highlighting an era I loved reading about.

I highly recommend this book and a must re
Theresa Smith
Jan 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Another appalling hidden history about mistreatment of women dusted off and at last given its due attention. The Girls with No Names is about the American version of Ireland’s Magdalene Laundries, an atrocious institutional system designed to keep women – and young girls – in line that lasted too long into the twentieth century. This novel is so good. The writing, the treatment if its history, the characters, the storyline – I am so impressed and so grateful to the author for writing it.

‘The sha
ʚϊɞ Shelley's ʚϊɞ Book Nook
I really liked this book, and found myself thinking about it long after I finished it. It was an amazing multilayered story and I really got attached to the characters. I loved the author's writing style and the voices used in this tale really brought the book to life and the plot was such an interesting heart-breaker.

The story is an engrossing one as well as vivid and deeply moving. It's one of those books you cannot put down and immediately wish for more when you are finished. A moving, import
Mar 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wonderful Historical Fiction

I really enjoyed this book from a historical fiction viewpoint as well as just a great stories. I had no idea Irish Laundries existed , how awful they were and what they really were. My son was born with a heart defect, so I had special feelings for Effie. However, there were many interesting characters in this story. So interestingly good and some interestingly bad.
Nov 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Loved this story! I enjoyed reading about the historical background and the House of Mercy. I also thought the characters were interesting. The book was easy to get into and the plot moved at a good pace. Readers who enjoy historical fiction will like this novel!
Jan 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book grabbed me from the very first when Effie was in the basement feeling like she was dying. Effie was born with a bad heart. A hole in her heart and she was not suppose to live a year. She’s 13 now and looking for her sister Luella.

Luella and Effie are sisters. Very close sisters who will do anything for each other. Luella never believed that Effie was really dying despite the fact she has a terrible heart problem and what they call “blue fits”. Their parents love them and trust them it
Jan 23, 2021 rated it really liked it
A slow going story at first, certainly the atrocities these young girls faced in the House of Mercy, albeit fiction in this writing are tough to think there were these types of places, however I did consider the time of the early 1900’s. The writing was wonderful and as usual I loved the epilogue and the authors notes.
Susan Peterson
Apr 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
The Girls With No Names is a compelling, heart-breaking story of courage, survival, and rebellion, set in New York City in the early 1900s. Luella and Effie are sisters who couldn’t be more different, but whose bond is incredibly strong. We meet other characters along the way who are also resourceful and determined, especially Jeanne, the sisters’ mother, and Mabel, a young girl whose life becomes intertwined in the lives of this family. The author brings to light a sad time in history, when rel ...more
Aug 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
When it is hot as heck outside and there is nothing "cool" to do but reading sitting in front of the a/c as everything else makes you end up a sweaty mess, it is the perfect day for a speed reader. (Yes it is hot and humid in Canada!)

I received a temporary digital Advance Reader Copy of this book from #NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

From the publisher, as I do not repeat the contents or story of books in reviews, I let them do it as they do it better than I do 😸.

The G
This book revolves are The House of Mercy, which actually existed decades ago. It should have been called The House of Abuse and Torment instead.

The House of Mercy was a place that took in "wayward" girls in the very early part of the 20th century. The women in charge of the institution believed they could force the girls to end whatever behavior got them sent there in the first place by forcing them to repent for their actions. It didn't matter if their actions were due to abuse or other reason
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Play Book Tag: The Girls With No Names / Serena Burdick. 3.75 stars 5 19 Dec 02, 2019 08:16PM  

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Serena Burdick is the author of the novels GIRL IN THE AFTERNOON (St. Martin’s Press, 2016) and THE GIRLS WITH NO NAMES, forthcoming from Park Row Books in January 2020. She is the 2017 International Book Award Winner for Historical Fiction. She holds an Associates of Arts degree from The American Academy of Dramatic Arts in theater and a Bachelors of Arts from Brooklyn College in English literatu ...more

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