Many thanks to Bookouture for inviting me to take part in Ann Bennett’s blog tour for ‘The Orphan House’. Here is my review:
As she looks at the baby wriggling in her father’s arms, a bolt of recognition goes through her and she takes a step back. And it’s in that moment that she begins to protect her father’s secrets.
1934, Weirfield-on-Thames. Connie Burroughs loves living in the orphanage that her father runs. Exploring its nooks and crannies with her sister, hearing the pounding of a hundred pairs of feet on the wooden stairs, having a father who is doing so much good. But everything changes the day she sees him carrying a newborn baby that he says he found near the broken front gate. A baby she recognises…
Present day. Arriving at her father’s beloved cottage beside the river, Sarah Jennings is hoping for peace and quiet, to escape her difficult divorce. But when she finds her father unwell and hunched over boxes of files on the orphanage where he was abandoned as a child, she decides to investigate it herself.
The only person left alive who lived at Cedar Hall is Connie Burroughs, but Connie sits quietly in her nursing home for a reason. The sewing box under Connie’s bed hides secrets that will change Sarah’s life forever, uncovering a connection between them that has darker consequences than she could ever imagine.
What does TWG think?
With the topic of adoption being at the heart of the book, ‘The Orphan House’ is a very poignant read which will ask to borrow the emotions of anyone who readers it.
I felt that the storyline was full of hope, whilst also keeping the realism of the heartache where adoption is concerned. What I will say though, is that the language used in reference to ‘real’ mothers left a bit of a bitter taste in my mouth and i found it to be a little archaic which was a shame.
Aside from that, I enjoyed the history and I was impressed with the authors attention to detail and belief in her characters – a real ‘food for thought’ novel.