One Word - Gripping

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The Orphan Collector is a book that centers on the Spanish flu epidemic of 1918 and definitely hits home right now considering the current COVID-19 pandemic. The story follows 13-year-old Pia as she battles the many tragedies the flu adds to her life. She goes through hell and high water to find her brothers after she has to leave them one day to search for food. Then we have this woman, Bernice, who at first you feel deep sorrow for until she does unthinkable thing after unthinkable thing until you're left wondering how could she get any worse. She gets worse ladies and gentlemen, much worse.

There is so much emotional trauma and potential health and child loss related triggers in this story, I would proceed with caution if you don't think that is something you can handle at the moment. However, I enjoyed how these things were written and how they rounded out the story to make it as intense as it is. It's rare a book gets me so emotional, I choked up quite often.

The Orphan Collector was incredibly gripping and there were often parts that shook me to the core. It didn't follow the route I thought it was going to take, but not in a bad way at all. I was drawn deeply into Pia's world and loved the slight magical undertone in this story regarding Pia's gift, I just love how Wiseman detailed these scenes which definitely added to the 5 star status of this book for me.

I was wonderfully satisfied by the outcome of this book. I just love it when all the pieces finally fall into place, especially after so much stress waiting for it to happen.

Sidebar: I think everyone needs a Finn Duffy in their lives.

Thank you BookishFirst and Kensington Publishing Corp. for the opportunity to read and review this ARC!