Ari's Reviews > The Lost Girl

The Lost Girl by Sangu Mandanna
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it was amazing
bookshelves: dystopia, favorites, standalone

If only tears could talk, they would tell you how much I loved this story..

They would tell you that pages can radiate emotions, that words can create feelings, that beauty can hurt.
If tears could talk.. they would tell you how they dropped on this book drowning smiles in emotions, drowning sadness and turning it into in happiness, making me heart melt slowly and leaving me with a sweet taste of hope.
"You're an angel among mortals. Echos are asked to sacrifice everything to make another family, other people, happy. To give them hope. You are hope."

Sometimes I read sad books that make me happy... How ironic, huh?
But it's true.. I love reading stories about humans, about the human nature in fact, about their essence, about their deep, raw feelings. Figuratively, I love the sound of my heart breaking with every word, with every new nuance discovered.. There's a beauty that can't be put into words, it hurts but it also makes me feel complete, because books like this one are everything I want and then a whole lot more.

I am at a loss for words, you know, and this only happens when I truly love a story. When it touches my heart, when it turns my life upside down, when it hurts to turn the last page and let go of a world so cruel but so beautiful, of these characters so perfect in their flaws.
I loved every bit of it and I can't get tired of telling you how amazingly beautiful this book really was for me.

It's like a part of me on paper, as someone said: if I were to write a book, this would be it. If I were to be a character, I would be named after a stubborn elephant in a zoo, I would feel trapped in a crazy world but I would grow wings and make myself fly. I would love with all my heart and I would always hope to find my way back home. I would fight, I would survive, I would believe in myself even when no one else will. I would play nice but I would never forget who I am, I would never stop trying to find my way to freedom.
“But maybe that's what the dead do. They stay. They linger. Benign and sweet and painful. They don't need us. They echo all by themselves.”

The story:
I've always asked myself: what are we without our choices, without the will to live our own lives by our rules and desires, without the will to be ourselves?
When you look in a mirror, what do you see?
What are you without that part that can't be seen: the inner you, the real you.. Can you be someone else, can you leave your own self behind and be that mirror?
Can you bury your feelings, fake your thoughts, be a puppet in a world that doesn't want you but uses you for what you represent, for the image you mirror?
...And here goes question after question and the truth is that this is just a tiny piece of what this story might be about.


The Love:
I loved the relationship between Eva and Shaun - their friendship was strong, their love was so sweet and innocent. They matched like no others, perfect in every way.
I loved how he saw her as a real human, I loved that he believed in her without any doubt, that he was there for her when she needed him the most, that he loved her and he never thought that she was just a reflection in a mirror, but a girl that deserves to be loved, to be cherished, to be given a second chance. Their romance was sweet, their connection strong, their chemistry palpable.. you could feel it in their little conversations, in their little fights, in their desires, their hopes for the other's safety and freedom. They melted my heart like no other couple, and if there is another book to follow (like a second book in a series) I hope to see more of them, together.
“You,” he says, before the door closes all the way. “I often dream of you.”

The Family:
I loved the connection between Eva and the 'familiars'.
How the supposed brother saw her as herself not a copy and he wanted to protect her, and how the little sister Amarra left behind was so sweet and innocent. How the mother wanted to see her daughter still in Eva and how the father never got over his grief and couldn't make himself believe in a fantasy.
Also, I liked the guardians that represented Eva's real family - or the only one she ever had. How they loved her and wanted to keep her safe in their way. How they treated her like a person and wanted her to acknowledge that as well.

The Friendship:
I could understand Amarra's friends, how they wanted her back, how they felt betrayed, how they all loved her, but I was happy to see Eva make new friends, create her own path. She tried a lot to be the best version of Amarra, but at the end she felt the need to be herself again, to take a break from that all, to just.. be.
"She was right. I am the thief. I've taken everything that belongs to her. She's had to give it all up. What must that be like, to know that every single thing you wear, every last thing you know, is being copied, mimicked, duplicated halfway across the world

I feel the need to talk a bit about Ray too (the boy Eva never did study what was like to kiss, as the synopsis says). I didn't understand how he got away with the accident, but I did care about him. I felt his pain, his hope, his struggle when things didn't add up. It saddened me to see how much he wished for Eva to really be Amarra.
...But there were times when I wanted to punch him right in the face too.

The Pain and grief:
Here goes the family next to Ray.
They were all so different and they saw her in such a different light.
I felt their love for Amarra, I saw them caring more and more for Eva, I felt their inner struggle, the fight between what is right and what is wrong, between their desire and their reasoning.. it was really heartbreaking.

Tiny, tiny little bug:
The IT girl in me kept screaming: a few hundreds years later (I can only assume) and they still use CDs (aka. the disks)? Come on, we barely use them anymore, if they can "stitch" life they must do better than that o_O

What an awesome, awesome read!
It cut my heart right open and I loved it from the first page to the last one, and its echo still lingers here..

Happy midnight reading!

* This review can also be found at

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Quotes Ari Liked

Sangu Mandanna
“But maybe that's what the dead do. They stay. They linger. Benign and sweet and painful. They don't need us. They echo all by themselves.”
Sangu Mandanna, The Lost Girl

Sangu Mandanna
“What is this power the dead have over the ones they leave behind? It's strange and beautiful and frightening, this deathless love that human being continue to feel for the ones they've lost.”
Sangu Mandanna, The Lost Girl

Sangu Mandanna
“You,” he says, before the door closes all the way. “I often dream of you.”
Sangu Mandanna, The Lost Girl

Sangu Mandanna
“If you expect the worse, you're only denying someone a chance to be better”
Sangu Mandanna, The Lost Girl

Sangu Mandanna
“I’d rather spend the rest of my life without ever seeing you again,” he says, “than watch them destroy you because of me.”
Sangu Mandanna, The Lost Girl

Reading Progress

January 7, 2013 – Shelved
January 8, 2013 – Started Reading
January 8, 2013 –
30.0% "So beautiful.. it makes you cry ;))"
January 8, 2013 –
90.0% "Believe me when I say that Eva is the best main character in the whole book world!"
January 8, 2013 – Shelved as: dystopia
January 8, 2013 – Shelved as: favorites
January 8, 2013 – Finished Reading
December 10, 2014 – Shelved as: standalone

Comments Showing 1-13 of 13 (13 new)

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message 1: by Josheka (new) - added it

Josheka Is the story set in India?

message 2: by Ari (last edited Jan 09, 2013 08:11AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ari Partly. It's split between England and India, but it's character driven, so there are not many details about life in India.

message 3: by Ari (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ari I really can't do that, as I don't quite know your taste in books.
You might want to read reviews form people that usually like same books as you and see if it still appeals to you afterwards.

If you like character-driven books, emotional stories about discovering yourself, about humanity and other things like that, then this book might be for you too. Otherwise I fear that you won't love it near as much.

Anna I'm so glad you loved this. Now I am very itching to grab my copy and start it. :)

message 5: by Ari (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ari I hope that you'll love it as well ;)

Kristalia Such a beautiful review Ari :D
i can't wait to read this one :)

message 7: by Dija (new)

Dija Gorgeous review like always, Ari. I'm so glad you loved this, but I don't think my heart could handle all the feelings.

message 8: by Arlene (new)

Arlene I love your reviews Ari.... have I told you that lately?

message 9: by Ari (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ari Oh, thank you.. you know how I get when I love a book this much ;))

Also, don't get me wrong, the book is not really that sad or depressing or anything (I try stay away from those, as my heart can't handle too much), but to see the world through Eva's eyes was at times a bit heartbreaking... Even the good things that happened to her left me sometimes teary-eyed ;))

Victoria Lovely review, Ariana! I felt the same way about The Lost Girl. It was devastatingly sad and beautiful!

message 11: by Ari (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ari Victoria wrote: "Lovely review, Ariana! I felt the same way about The Lost Girl. It was devastatingly sad and beautiful! "

Thanks Victoria, I like it when I can connect with a character so strongly that I can feel the same emotions. I loved this story!

Summer Me too - I felt all the emotions and all the pain and had teary eyes throughout almost all of the book :) But the ending was a bit unsatisfactory

message 13: by Ari (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ari Yeah.. I think I had some sort of a 'meh' feeling near the ending, but I enjoyed it just too much up until then. And I still love it :D

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