The Girl She Left Behind
Books & Book Reviews - Fiction

The Girl She Left Behind

Brand new from best-selling author Jo Bartlett, an emotional and uplifting read, guaranteed to break your heart and put it back together again.

A family in turmoil…

Phoebe Spencer left home a long time ago, desperate to get away from her mother’s emotional manipulation. She knows her life is better away from her family, but she can’t help feeling she’s simply running away from her problems…

Then Phoebe hears that her younger sister Lucy has disappeared, leaving behind her four-year old daughter, Darcy. Phoebe’s certain Lucy will be back soon – she’d never leave Darcy alone – and then Phoebe can get on with her life again.

But as the days pass there’s still no sign of Lucy, and everyone begins to fear the worst. Phoebe has to consider the terrible truth that Lucy might never come home. And as their mother makes it clear she wants to take control of Darcy’s life, Phoebe must do all she can to protect the girl her sister left behind – no matter the cost to her.

A brand new emotional read from bestselling author Jo Bartlett.

Purchase Link

My Review of The Girl She Left Behind

Rating: 4 out of 5.

When Phoebe Spencer, left home for London, a long time ago she thought she was leaving her family problems behind. Growing up with a narrcisistic mother had taken its toll on Phoebe and her younger sister, Lucy. While they had been close as children, their mother’s interference and their life choices had made their relationship quite weak. Then she hears that Lucy has disappeared, leaving her four-year-old daughter, Darcy, behind, with the express instructions that Phoebe was to be incharage of the little girl.

At first, Phoebe thinks Lucy will come back soon, but days pass, there’s no sign of her. Slowly and reluctantly, Phoebe and everyone realizes Lucy might never return. With their mom wanting to take control of Darcy’s life, Phoebe steps up to protect her niece, no matter what it takes. She also struggles with the fear that she would be an inadequate parent to Darcy. However, her oldest friend and some new ones provide Darcy with the encouragement and support she needs to fight her own demons and be there for Darcy.

The writer has skillfully crafted a story filled with suspense and deep emotions, delving into the intricacies of family connections and the lasting ties that bind us. The story unfolds smoothly, immersing readers in the challenges faced by the characters and the growing tension within the family. Phoebe’s inner struggle, caught between her wish to move on from the past and the unexpected responsibilities she must shoulder, brings additional layers of complexity to the narrative.

The characters’ experiences and unexpected turns in the plot make it a memorable read, touching on themes of mental health, the effects of emotional abuse on children, love, sacrifice, and the strength to tackle challenging moments.

Author Bio

Jo Bartlett is the bestselling author of over nineteen women’s fiction titles. She fits her writing in between her two day jobs as an educational consultant and university lecturer and lives with her family and three dogs on the Kent coast. Her first title for Boldwood is The Cornish Midwife – part of a twelve-book deal.

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I received a copy of this book from Rachel’s Random Resources and Boldwood Books via NetGalley for a review and participation in the blog tour. Read what others on this tour are writing about the book

The Girl She Left Behind

A lover of words. A self-acceptance blogger. A creativity coach. A book reviewer. A woman happily journeying through midlife, moving from self-improvement to self-acceptance and enjoying being herself. I write about life, wellness, relationships at Everyday Gyaan. An avid reader, I review books at and offer coaching to writers and bloggers and anyone looking to explore their creativity at The Frangipani Creative, located in Secunderabad, India.

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