Can ‘Little Broken Things’ Ever Truly Be Mended? [REVIEW]


A woman is shocked when her sister asks her to take care of a little girl she’s never seen before in Nicole Baart’s Little Broken Things. (Photo by Jay, Flickr)

Two sisters with a tenuous relationship. A mysterious little girl who doesn’t speak. Loads of unanswered questions. All of these ingredients make Nicole Baart’s new novel, Little Broken Things, a story that will tug at your heartstrings and make you examine just how you define “family.”


Atria Books

When Quinn Cruz’s sister sends her a bewildering text message, she initally shrugs it off. After all, it isn’t like the two of them are close. But then Nora, her older sister, shows up at the lake house with a child named Lucy in tow… a child she has never seen before!

Nora tells Quinn she must keep the wide-eyed, cowering girl safe and that she mustn’t tell anyone about her, especially their mother. Then Nora disappears before Quinn can ask any more questions, and suddenly she’s left to care for a child without knowing why, or who she is protecting her from. Furthermore, Quinn can’t help but wonder exactly what kind of trouble her sister has gotten herself into!

Little Broken Things is a mysterious and suspenseful yarn about the secrets families keep and examines why we must relinquish the expectations we have of others. Only then can the fragile relationships between family members ever begin to be nurtured and repaired.

As I read this book, I couldn’t help but be reminded of my own family growing up. I see much of myself in Quinn as she strikes out on her own, much to the dismay of her parents, even as she subsequently attempts to overcome obstacles, avoid making similar mistakes as her parents, and strives to think the best of others.

After one particular phone call from her sister, Quinn asks, “Should I help a sibling who I had only minimal contact with over the years, no questions asked? Is blood thicker than water?”

Like a trained anthropologist eager to understand a culture’s complicated dynamics, Baart carefully peals back the layers of her characters’ family unit to examine how each of her characters navigates through life and decides whether or not to face their greatest fears or to simply keep them buried and one another at arm’s length. Little Broken Things is a complex, meaty, and satisfying novel that readers who enjoy engrossing family dramas will undoubtedly love.

Nicole Baart

Nicole Baart


Nicole Baart is the critically-acclaimed author of seven previous novels, including, most recently, The Beautiful DaughtersHer work has been featured as a Midwest Connections book pick, nominated for a Christy Award, and earned a starred and featured review from Publishers Weekly. In 2011, she co-authored a book that debuted at number four on the New York Times bestseller list.

She is also the co-founder of One Body One Hope, a non-profit organization that partners with a sisterhood of churches and orphanages in Monrovia, Liberia. An adoption advocate, she speaks on a variety of topics ranging from orphan care to parenthood to books and the writing process.

When she’s not writing or doing philanthropic work, she loves handwritten letters, New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc, and great conversation.

The mother of five children from four different countries, Nicole lives in a small town in Iowa. Visit her home on the Web at, like her on Facebook, and follow her on Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.

By Nicole Baart
368 pgs. Atria Books. $16

TLC Book Tours Tour HostPurchase Little Broken Things at one of these fine online retailers: Amazon, Books-A-Million, or Barnes & Noble.

Little Broken Things is brought to you in association with TLC Book Tours.

Little Broken Things Giveaway

Want to win a copy of Little Broken Things for your personal library? Simply complete the form below and click submit to enter. Giveaway is limited to U.S. residents only. Contest ends January 4, 2018.

About Heather Fink
Heather Fink is a writer, bibliophile and award-winning librarian who loves to introduce the next generation of readers to the wonderful world of books. She currently resides in Texas.

One Response to Can ‘Little Broken Things’ Ever Truly Be Mended? [REVIEW]

  1. Jathan Fink says:

    Reblogged this on Jadeworks Entertainment and commented:

    Is blood really thicker than water? Nicole Baart explores family secrets and the dynamics of sisterhood in her brilliant new novel, Little Broken Things.

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