Wednesday, July 14, 2021

Audiobook: The Lost Apothecary

By Sarah Penner

Narrated by Lorna Bennett, Lauren Anthony, Lauren Irwin

Length: 10 hours and 18 mins

Hidden in the depths of eighteenth-century London, a secret apothecary shop caters to an unusual kind of clientele. Women across the city whisper of a mysterious figure named Nella who sells well-disguised poisons to use against the oppressive men in their lives. But the apothecary’s fate is jeopardized when her newest patron, a precocious 12-year-old, makes a fatal mistake, sparking a string of consequences that echo through the centuries.

Meanwhile in present-day London, aspiring historian Caroline Parcewell spends her tenth wedding anniversary alone, running from her own demons. When she stumbles upon a clue to the unsolved apothecary murders that haunted London 200 years ago, her life collides with the apothecary’s in a stunning twist of fate - and not everyone will survive.

With crackling suspense, unforgettable characters, and searing insight, The Lost Apothecary is a subversive and intoxicating debut novel of secrets, vengeance, and the remarkable ways women can save each other despite the barrier of time.

My Thoughts: Since its release, The Lost Apothecary has popped up in all of my social medias. At first I didn't think I was going to read this book since I had so many other books on my TBR pile but then a friend read it and raved about it. I then began to look up more info on this book and immediately became intrigued with the synopsis. Now, did this book live up to all of the hype? Not really, but I did have a good time listening to it. 

The story alternated between two timelines, the 1790s and the present time. I was highly interested in listening to the chapters that were set in the past. I wanted to learn more about Nella and the world of the apothecary. It was fascinating to hear how the apothecary was seen more as a place to help women instead of a place to get items to murder bad men. Also, I was surprised that Nella was never accused of being a witch, especially for this time period. The present day story did not interest me as much. Yes, my heart went out to Caroline when she found out her husband's secret, but I didn't care too much about her. The present timeline was supposed to tie in with the one in the past but I felt that this timeline could have been left out. It did not deliver too much to the plot. This book would have been great if it was solely set in the 1790s. 

I decided to listen to the audiobook and I'm glad that I did. Three different women narrated the story as it transitioned between the characters. Each person helped set the mood of the setting and helped differentiate the characters. They made it easier for the reader to follow which timeline the story was in, especially when the writing style appeared to be the same no matter what time period or character the story was in. 

Overall, this was a pretty good book. It did not live up to the hype that I read but I still enjoyed listening to this audio production. I rate it: 


  1. I initially wanted to read this book too. It sounded intriguing, but I've read too many other reviews by other bloggers that also stated like you did that The Lost Apothecary didn't live up to the hype. So, I'll be skipping this one.

    1. Yeah...I really try to avoid books that have been super hyped but the cover of this one really drew me in.