I saw this book on display in the library and was originally drawn to the front cover. When I read the blurb the tale really intrigue me. This book did not disappoint.
The book is set in the nineteenth century after the Crimean War. Lib Wright is a nurse trained by Florence Nightingale. After the war ended she returned to London to work in one of the hospitals. Unsatisfied she takes a position in Ireland for two weeks. The pay is good and she needs the break away from her London life.
Once in Ireland she arrived in a small village, no more than a collection of buildings. She has been hired to watch Anna, an eleven year old girl who claims not to have eaten for four months. Tourists have flocked to see her convinced she is a miracle of god.
Lib and a nun from a nearby convent have been charged with watching Anna for two weeks day and night to prove if it is true. Lib is sceptical, convinced it is some trick that she will expose.
As the days pass Lib watches Anna, gets to know her and the family. She watches Anna grow slowly weaker and delves into the family secrets to try and discover the truth.
But Lib has been employed only to watch Anna. She must make a decision on whether she will do her job or if the welfare of Anna is more important.
She is challenged by a reporter who is visiting to write about the child. He makes her consider what her role is looking after this child.
Ultimately Lib must uncover the secrets of Anna and her family and make a choice. A choice that will decide Anna’s life.
This book was absolutely gripping. It’s not a fast pace, but the story slowly unfolds. Truths are revealed one at a time until the final choice must be made.
It introduces some really interesting themes of morality, religion and family. I didn’t find it at all predictable. The ending was extremely satisfying and well done.
Overall this was a really good book and I thorough recommend it.
Have you read The Wonder by Emma Donoghue? Let me know what you think here!
Get it here: The Wonder by Emma Donoghue