Book Review – The Forgotten Ones

Hey, everyone. A couple of weeks ago, I decided to pair down my TBR list. I’ve had books on there for years, some that I’ll never read partially due to changing taste. Others sounded interesting until I read the first few pages.

I recently moved The Forgotten Ones to the top of the list.


A spellbinding novel about an unspeakable secret that could destroy a family, from the New York Times bestselling author of Finding Emma.

Elle is a survivor. She’s managed to piece together a solid life from a childhood of broken memories and fairy tales her mom told her to explain away bad dreams. But weekly visits to her mother still fill Elle with a paralyzing fear she can’t explain. It’s just another of so many unanswered questions she grew up with in a family estranged by silence and secrets.

Elle’s world turns upside down when she receives a deathbed request from her grandfather, a man she was told had died years ago. Racked by grief, regrets, and a haunted conscience, he has a tale of his own to tell Elle: about her mother, an imaginary friend, and two strangers who came to the house one night and never left.

As Elle’s past unfolds, so does the truth—if she can believe it. She must face the reasons for her inexplicable dread. As dark as they are, Elle must listen…before her grandfather’s death buries the family’s secrets forever.

My Review:

Mixed feelings…

Having read Steena Holmes’ Finding Emma a few years ago, I purchased The Forgotten Ones because of a BookBub recommendation. The storyline sounded intriguing and the opening chapters captured my attention.

Elle is a pediatric nurse who cares deeply for her patients and their families. She shares an apartment with her best friend Brennley, who is a nurse in the same hospital, working on the geriatric floor.

Brennley helps a dying patient, David Walker, pen a letter to his long-lost granddaughter and discovers it’s none other than her roommate. Elle, who had been told her grandfather was dead, decides to visit him. He tells her a story and she learns her mother had been keeping secrets for years.

Although at times the story was a little far-fetched, I wanted to keep reading. Holmes had me guessing as to the true identity of a couple of the characters.

Overall, it was a satisfying read. Until the end. I sort of felt like I did when I watched the movie Bridge on The River Kwai. It just ended—the author left too many loose ends. I don’t want to post any spoilers, but I found a few things unbelievable and unrealistic.

I give this one 3.5 stars (rounded up to four).

30 thoughts on “Book Review – The Forgotten Ones

  1. I hate it when books end leaving things unfinished. You feel like you invested all that time, and still didn’t have all the questions answered. Kudos for trying to clear out your TBR, Joan – I think I’m fighting a losing battle with mine.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. It’s okay to have a big TBR. The way I figure it, it just goes to show contemporary writers are turning out more and more wonderful books! Good review, too bad about the ending, but maybe other readers dig that kind of abrupt ending as a way to imagine more.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Kudos to you for trying to clear out some of the titles on your Kindle, Joan. I have the same situation. And I see no hope of ever whittling down my TBR list, as I am always adding more. 🙂 Ah, the life of a reader. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this book. That is an intriguing plot.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Sorry this one didn’t live up to expectations, Joan. It sounded intriguing.
    I just finished a book recently (I’ll review on my blog next week) that had an abrupt ending as well. Surprisingly, I gave it five stars, which I don’t think I’ve EVER done to a book that ended that way before.

    Like you, I’m trying to clean up my TBR, but I keep buying more books, LOL! So many to read, and so little time.

    You wrote an excellent, insightful review for The Forgotten Ones.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Mae. Yes, I keep adding books. I’ll never whittle it down, but I recall when I would run out of books to read. That was before our town had a local library, so it was a trip to the brick-and-mortar store or nothing. I’d much rather have a ready supply of books.

      Looking forward to reading your review next week.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Thinking about the unread books on my Kindle gives me anxiety.

    I’m sorry the book was a mixed bag for you. Shame about the ending. I wish we could give half stars on reviews. Sometimes the books really do lie between the whole stars in quality. And Amazon ranks books to one decimal point, anyway, so they should let us. (Whatever. Don’t get me started on them and reviews.)

    Liked by 1 person

  6. It’s a shame, this book sounded so interesting but.. you’re not the first person who says it just ends abruptly, leaving too many questions. Thank you for the honest review!

    Liked by 2 people

  7. I have to do the same thing on my Kindle. I have several books I started to read and couldn’t finish or will never read. Thanks, for sharing your review, Joan.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’ve had some on my Kindle for five or six years. Doubtful I’ll read them at this point. At least they’re in my library if I ever change my mind. 😉


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