Sheyla ✎'s Reviews > The Lost Apothecary

The Lost Apothecary by Sarah Penner
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bookshelves: 2021, arc, debut, netgalley, publisher, historical-fiction

Two timelines. Two different centuries. Women impacted by deceit.

In 1791, we meet Nella. She is a woman in her forties. She owns an apothecary just like her mother did before her. The difference is that while her mother used it for healing purposes, Nella after a terrible event in her life has decided to use it for murder. Nella supplies poisons to women who want to eliminate a man in their lives. It can be a brother, a father, a husband. Nella's only rules are not to harm women and to keep a log with the names of the women who requested her help.

Eliza Fanning is a twelve-year-old who has been sent to work as an employee for her mistress, Mrs. Amwell. Just like so many other women, Mrs. Amwell is in need on Nella's help and this serves as a conduit for Eliza to meet Nella. Eliza is immediately taken with Nella and her shop. She wants to learn more about the poison and wants to help her around the store.

In the present, we meet Caroline Parcewell who is in London celebrating her ten-year marriage anniversary alone. Just before her planned trip with her husband, she learns about his infidelity. She needs time to process what she has learned and to take some decisions about where she wants her life to go.

A finding during a mudlarking event will make Caroline go digging with the help of Gaynor, a librarian at the British Library, about the apothecary and the murders which occurred in the 18th century.

An original debut by Sarah Penner. It was a slow burn that had good characterization and ambiance.

I had some issues with the part of the story that involved Caroline. At some point, she is in trouble but the resolution felt rushed and simplified.

Cliffhanger: No

3.5/5 Fangs

A complimentary copy was provided by HARLEQUIN/ Park Row via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

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Reading Progress

February 13, 2021 – Started Reading
February 13, 2021 – Finished Reading
February 14, 2021 – Shelved
February 14, 2021 – Shelved as: 2021
February 14, 2021 – Shelved as: arc
February 14, 2021 – Shelved as: debut
February 14, 2021 – Shelved as: netgalley
February 14, 2021 – Shelved as: publisher
February 14, 2021 – Shelved as: historical-fiction

Comments Showing 1-22 of 22 (22 new)

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❤️ Paulette  Alphas Review Happy Reading


Sheyla ✎ ❤️ Paulette Alphas Review wrote: "Happy Reading"

Thank you!


message 3: by Jayme (new)

Jayme Despite mostly rave reviews, I have yet to be tempted! 🤷🏻‍♀️
Enjoyed the alternate perspective from you! ❤️


message 4: by Michael (new)

Michael David Great review, Sheyla! Too bad you had some issues, but glad you mostly enjoyed it.


message 5: by Regina (new)

Regina I really appreciate this review, Sheyla. I (unlike Jayme!) keep feeling tempted by this one, but I'm not sure it's a good fit after all given the details you've shared. Thanks!


message 6: by Kat (last edited Feb 14, 2021 05:45PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Kat I might've enjoyed this one more than you, but I do understand what you're saying about Caroline's troubles. A fair and honest review, Sheyla! :)


Sheyla ✎ Jayme wrote: "Despite mostly rave reviews, I have yet to be tempted! 🤷🏻‍♀️
Enjoyed the alternate perspective from you! ❤️"


Thank you, Jayme. I know I'm in the minority.


Sheyla ✎ Michael wrote: "Great review, Sheyla! Too bad you had some issues, but glad you mostly enjoyed it."

Thank you, Michael.


Sheyla ✎ Regina wrote: "I really appreciate this review, Sheyla. I (unlike Jayme!) keep feeling tempted by this one, but I'm not sure it's a good fit after all given the details you've shared. Thanks!"

Thank you, Regina. I wish I can tell you what to do. You might love it.


Sheyla ✎ Kat wrote: "I might've enjoyed this one more than you, but I do understand what you're saying about Caroline's troubles. A fair and honest review, Sheyla! :)"

Thank you, Kat and I'm happy you enjoyed this one more.


message 11: by Lucy (new)

Lucy Great review! This one doesn't seem like it'd be a good fit for me 😏


Sheyla ✎ Lucy wrote: "Great review! This one doesn't seem like it'd be a good fit for me 😏"

Thank you, Lucy. Most of my friends love it. You mgiht too.


❤️ Paulette  Alphas Review Sheyla ✎ wrote: "❤️ Paulette Alphas Review wrote: "Happy Reading"

Thank you!"


Pleasure as always Sheyla ツ


message 14: by Tina (new)

Tina A nice review Sheyla!!


Sheyla ✎ Tina wrote: "A nice review Sheyla!!"

Thank you, Tina!


Dorie  - Cats&Books :) Terrific review Sheyla 😃


Sheyla ✎ Dorie - Cats&Books :) wrote: "Terrific review Sheyla 😃"

Thank you, Dorie.


message 18: by Nicole (new)

Nicole I'm reading more and more books nowadays where the endings aren't well done although what precedes it was decent :/ great review, Sheyla!


Sheyla ✎ Nicole wrote: "I'm reading more and more books nowadays where the endings aren't well done although what precedes it was decent :/ great review, Sheyla!"

Thank you, Nicole. It's gonna be hard to plan a good ending with many people writing books now.


message 20: by Yun (new)

Yun Awesome review, Sheyla! Sorry the ending was a bit rushed, but I'm glad you found a lot you enjoyed! I have this on my tbr. :)


Sheyla ✎ Yun wrote: "Awesome review, Sheyla! Sorry the ending was a bit rushed, but I'm glad you found a lot you enjoyed! I have this on my tbr. :)"

Thank you, Yun. I hope you like it.


message 22: by Holly (new)

Holly  B Wonderful review Sheyla! I've been curious about this one.


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