Lost & Found; Brooke Davis
Dutton - 2015
In Lost & Found, three unlikely characters forge an unexpected bond.
Intro -- Millie Bird
"Millie's dog, Rambo was her Very First Dead Thing. She found him by the side of the road on a morning when the sky seemed to be falling, fog circling his broken shape like ghost. His jaw and eyes were wide open, as if in mid-bark. His left leg pointed in a direction it normally didn't. The fog lifted around them, the clouds gathered in the sky, and she wondered if he was turning into rain."
It was only when she dragged Rambo up to the house in her schoolbag that her mother thought to tell her how the world worked."
So begins the sad tale of seven year old Millie Bird whose mother left her in the Big Ladies Underwear department, telling her she would be right back, shortly after the death of Millie's dad. This was a lie of course.
Millie meets eighty-seven year-old Karl, The Touch Typist, who has just escaped from the nursing home his son left him at, a place he probably didn't really need to be just yet. Karl deeply misses his wife Evie, the love of his life, who has passed on. Karl, meets Millie at the department store coffee shop where he is hanging out.
Millie's neighbor, Agatha Pantha, eighty-two, is a miserable, bitter, old woman who became a recluse after her husband Ron, who she never seemed to care about, dies. When Millie later returns home, and comes to Agatha's house hungry, Agatha ventures outdoors for the first time in months to bring Millie some cookies and tea.
There are many touching things about this story of lonely people who are brought together. Millie, for example keeps, "a book of dead things", her dog is #1 and her dad is #28. Wherever she goes, she leaves signs for her mother, hoping she comes back: "in here mum" or "be right back, mum".
The story takes place in Australia and I thought that the writing style, a bit choppy at times, took some getting used to. The story is told from the third person POV and, the author does a wonderful job getting deep into the heads of the characters. When I was finished reading, I felt like I really knew each character. Lost & Found is story will pull at your heartstrings, as well as make you laugh. Readers who enjoy stories of love, loss, loneliness and abandonment, should give this quirky debut novel a try. The cover is just perfect, IMO, as well.