review by Maryom
Martha Lost was found on Liverpool's Lime Street station as a baby and has lived there, in the flat above the lost property office, ever since; in fact despite being sixteen years old she's never even left the station, her adoptive mother having convinced her that the building will collapse if she ever leaves, even for just five minutes! Now though, Martha is discovering that not everything "Mother" told her is entirely true, and, that if she is to stay in her home, she needs to discover who she really is.... She may have a special 'gift' which brings to life the stories of the lost property store items, and helps her re-unite them with their owners, but it can't help her find her real mother.
The Finding of Martha Lost is a truly delightful, whimsical story, almost fairy-tale like in some qualities; it's light and breezy, and reading it with Easter sunshine streaming through the windows felt just right. It's odd then that the setting is a bustling railway station smelling of "grime and soot and cigarettes" or "diesel and vinegar and vomit', but somehow it casts a magical spell and the charm of the characters make up for the drab every-day surroundings.
Martha's station is peopled not with commuters dashing along to their daily grind but a cast of characters as eccentric as she is - George, a Roman soldier in full armour, William who lives in the tunnels beneath the station, and, most importantly, coffee shop owner, Elisabeth, who regularly pops in to the lost property office like a cake-bearing fairy godmother.
But into Martha's delightful world, like a true fairy-tale villain, comes Max Cole, an Australian with a lucky find; a suitcase which once belonged to The Beatles' roadie Mal Evans, filled with items relating to the band, and with it Max believes he can make a fortune - with just a little (or a lot) of help from Martha.
A charming, sparkling read for adults, or teens, really anyone who believes fairy tales can come true, even in a Liverpool railway station!
Maryom's review - 5 stars
Publisher - DoubledayGenre - adult, fairy tale (sort of)