“First, there was trust. Then, there was betrayal. You cannot have one without the other. You cannot be betrayed by someone you do not trust … what you have learned is the same heart-wrenching journey of every woman to whom I have sold a poison. And it is, indeed, the same path for me.”
Rules of the Apothecary
Rule #1: The poison must never be used to harm another woman.
Rule #2: The names of the murderer and her victim must be recorded in the apothecary’s register.
The Lost Apothecary is a multi-POV story set in London about an apothecary that aided women by providing them with poisons to kill men who have wronged them. The story follows Nella and Eliza from the 1700s and how their encounter threatens to end what Nella has built and expose the women who have sought Nella’s services. In modern day, Caroline fins a vial that leads her down a historical journey about a hidden apothecary and its connection to a string of murders over 200 years ago.
The Lost Apothecary is a stunning read with one flaw. Why need Caroline’s POV? The encounter between Nella and Eliza was everything I could have asked for. The unraveling of events upon Nella and Eliza meeting is the heart of the story. Nella and Eliza’s POV’s are necessary to the plot, but I cannot say the same for Caroline. Caroline is an overall decent character, but not memorable. Caroline’s passion for history, literature, and the lives of others is what I like most about her because it is a quality I resonate with. However, she does not add to the overall progression of the story. If Sarah Penner were to remove Caroline’s POV, the story would not have ben hindered in any way. Caroline’s deep dive into the vial she found and how it connects to the apothecary would have seem pertinent(maybe?) if we did not get to have Nella and Eliza’s POV of what had happened. Caroline’s POV was overshadowed because I had no reason to invest in her. Yes, she was having marital problems, but the story doesn’t really give me reason to care about that because it starts with her coming to London, which was supposed to be an anniversary trip, without her husband.
Nella and Eliza gave us everything we needed. Instead of Caroline’s POV, I would have liked to know how Eliza survived and hear about her marriage from her POV instead of Caroline’s. I also would have like to know what happened to Nella after she realized Eliza survived. However, despite my questions, I am still satisfied with the ending and think it was a great book to read!