Obtained: Penguin Canada
Publish date: January 22, 2015
I had literally no idea what to expect from this book when I first opened it. There was a girl on the cover, and the implication that someone was about to go on a life-changing adventure. Well, both of those assumptions I made were true. But I couldn’t have guessed how witty or enchanting the writing would be, or just how much I’d love the characters.
Lost & Found has three protagonists and switches between their points of view: there is Millie, the seven-year-old whose mum abandons her in a department store after her father dies; there is Agatha, an almost-ninety-year-old whose husband died and spends her days sitting inside shouting her neighbours flaws at them; and there is Karl the Touch Typist, another eighty-something who escaped the old age home after he realizes he and his wife (who died a while ago) didn’t go on any of the adventures they’d planned. Agatha and Karl meet up with Millie and go on a road trip to find her mother.
I know, with the amount of times I used the word “dead”, or variations of it, in that last paragraph, it sounds like a sad book. But it’s actually hilarious, and really cute! I read a few reviews beforehand of people who were not impressed with this novel because they couldn’t relate to the characters. But these three are so quirky and to be honest, messed up, that you shouldn’t have to relate. To me, I got more out of the book imagining it as the next Pixar movie (Karl’s story in particular really reminded me of Up). Not all literature has to be taken literally, or has to be relatable. It just has to have a great, captivating message.
Davis does a wonderful job taking these three very different characters and creating voices for each of them. I particularly loved reading from Millie’s point of view, because it was so interesting to see how an adult may see a situation versus what she pulls out of it as a young child.
Lost & Found is about these characters trying to find Millie’s mother, but it’s not. It’s about learning to cope with the inevitability of death, and enjoying life along the way. Millie’s favourite idea is that “We’re all going to die someday, and it’s OK!” It’s about the people in their lives that they have lost, people who have dictated their entire life and formed their identities, and how they are able to move on, and find themselves again.