The Family I Lost by Ali Mercer

I’m delighted to tell you about this gorgeous book today. Thanks so much to Bookouture for the copy of the book and invitation to be part of the tour.


Publication Day:  May 10th 2022

Author:   Ali Mercer

Buy Links:





Description:There are two little girls in the photo. I instantly recognise myself as the small, dark-haired child in the purple dress. But who is the girl with the long blonde hair laughing at the camera? And why is the photograph here, in a stranger’s house?

When I find the tattered picture hidden away at the back of a dusty cupboard in Amy’s house my mouth goes dry with shock. Though I haven’t known Amy for very long, I love looking after her children, in her perfect hilltop house with its sprawling garden. After feeling lost for months, reeling from the accident that tore everything apart, I hoped this was my chance to turn my life around.

But I can’t shake the feeling that I’ve been here before. I know this house somehow, the curve of the staircase and the view from the attic window are so familiar. I can feel it in my bones. What isn’t she telling me?

I can’t help noticing things that don’t add up: Amy’s guarded behaviour when I ask questions about her past, the whispered stories I overhear in the village and the locked room downstairs I’m not allowed to enter.

My mother always told me we didn’t have any family, that it was just the two of us against the world. I’ve always been sure she was hiding something. Finding the photograph, I thought I had it all figured out. But the truth is far worse than I could ever have imagined…

Am I ready to unlock the secrets of my past? Or should I have stayed well away?

A gripping and emotional novel about a dark family secret and the complicated relationships between mothers and daughters. An unputdownable page-turner for fans of Amanda Prowse, Susan Lewis and Kerry Fisher.

My Review:

I always enjoy Ali Mercer’s books. She has a talent for writing such beautiful books, often emotional and heart-breaking, but always with the most real and relatable characters.

This book starts off seemingly relatively straightforward in plot, with two long-lost cousins becoming reunited by chance. But as the book progresses it becomes apparent that there is so much more to this story. There are so many secrets and a very tangled family web of lies and untold truths.

We hear from the points of view of both Lisa and Amy, and later on, from some characters from the past. There is also a timeline that goes between past and present. This richly woven tapestry gives a real depth to the book, and really keeps the reader wanting to know more.

It’s not until near the end that the threads begin to untangle and make sense, and at this stage it’s impossible to put the book down. I spent many happy hours completely engrossed in this book. It’s at times sad, when we discover how many secrets were covered up, and how many years were wasted in misconceptions, but it’s also a very life-affirming story of family and love.

I was sorry when this book had to come to an end, and I think that it will stay with me for a long time. I’d really recommend it.

My Rating:

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Author Bio:

Ali decided she wanted to be a writer early on and wrote her first novel when she was at primary school. She did an English degree and spent her early twenties working in various jobs in journalism, including as a reporter for the show business newspaper The Stage. She started writing fiction in earnest after getting married, moving out of London to the Oxfordshire market town of Abingdon and starting a family. She has two children, a daughter and a son who is autistic and was diagnosed when he was four years old.

Ali is fascinated by families, their myths and secrets, and the forces that hold them together, split them up and (sometimes) bring them back together again. She always travels with tissues and a book and has been known to cry over a good story, but is also a big fan of the hopeful ending.

Author Social Media Links:

For updates and pictures, follow Ali on Twitter (@AlisonLMercer) or Instagram (@alimercerwriter), or on her Facebook page (AliMercerwriter)


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