A Child For Sale, a review by Kristin

posted in: Kristin | 0


A Child For Sale
By: Pam Howes

Publication Date: September 15, 2023
Published By: Bookouture
271 Pages

Find It On: Amazon | Goodreads

*This post contains affiliate links. We earn a small commission if you purchase the book through the link.


1964. When seventeen-year-old Laura Sims realises she’s pregnant, her boyfriend Pete says they will look after and love their baby together; but Laura’s mother turns on them in fury. Wrenched from her home and the boy she loves Laura is thrown into a home for unmarried mothers. With no access to the outside world and treated harshly, Laura fights to keep her child safe and to find a way to escape the nightmare…

2015. Despite the anguish of losing their firstborn, Laura and Pete have been happily married for fifty years. But they’ve never given up on their lost child. And when Laura uncovers a tattered old diary from someone who worked at the home where she last saw her child, her heart breaks in two: those who ran the home sold their baby to a desperate, childless family.

Such cruel actions give Laura and Pete a tiny sliver of hope. Is there a chance to find their child, safe and happy, or will their search bring them only heartbreak and devastation?


This was one of the most interesting and harrowing books that I have read. To say that I loved this book would be an understatement. I am always fascinated by these types of historical fiction books – ones about adoptions, homes for pregnant teens, mental institutions etc.. This book made me want to learn more about The Pines.

The historical part of this book was awful. The Pines were run by Nuns! They treated these unmarried mothers horrifically. And they were Catholic Nuns! I can’t get over it. To read about how the babies were ripped away, the mothers were treated as slaves for the nuns – it was all just so disgusting. How could anyone harm anyone? How can a nun harm a pregnant woman? It truly does baffle me!

Then there’s the fictional part of this book. And that was equally harrowing (though the ending let me with a good feeling in my heart). I have two children, and having them ripped away from me after birth is a horrific thought. Being put into a place like The Pines is … well, for lack of a better word, horrific. I know times were different, but if her parents didn’t want to help her and were embarrassed of her, they should have just let her be with Pete. I loved the little scheming with the other girls to get letters out of and into The Pines.

I loved how courageous Olive was – while she was shy and timid, Laura and her friends were nice to Olive. But she tried to help the girls any way that she could. And then after when the police were learning about the events that occurred at The Pines, Olive was once again courageous.

Howes beautifully wove these two timelines and events beautifully together to make one amazing book.


Sharing is caring!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *