ICYMI - Audiobook Review: The Impossible Girl by Lydia Kang

The Impossible Girl by Lydia Kang
Narrated by Saskia Maarleveld
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
Publication Date: September 18, 2018
Date Read: October 25, 2018
Length:  10 hours 53 minutes
Source: Kindle Unlimited
Two hearts. Twice as vulnerable.

Manhattan, 1850. Born out of wedlock to a wealthy socialite and a nameless immigrant, Cora Lee can mingle with the rich just as easily as she can slip unnoticed into the slums and graveyards of the city. As the only female resurrectionist in New York, she’s carved out a niche procuring bodies afflicted with the strangest of anomalies. Anatomists will pay exorbitant sums for such specimens—dissecting and displaying them for the eager public.

Cora’s specialty is not only profitable, it’s a means to keep a finger on the pulse of those searching for her. She’s the girl born with two hearts—a legend among grave robbers and anatomists—sought after as an endangered prize.

Now, as a series of murders unfolds closer and closer to Cora, she can no longer trust those she holds dear, including the young medical student she’s fallen for. Because someone has no intention of waiting for Cora to die a natural death.
This review was originally posted at Pure Textuality PR on November 18, 2018 and can be found here. (My Review on Pure Textuality PR)  I encourage you to take a look around the website, read a review or two, and maybe even sign up for a blog tour.

My Review

This was quite good. I became aware of this book from a few positive reviews and once I read the book’s summary, I knew that I would have to give it a try as well. This was one of those books that I liked more and more as I read. It really didn’t take too long before I reached a point where I didn’t want to put the book down. I really had a great time reading this book.

Imagine living each day with the knowledge that you are worth more as a corpse than you are alive. That is exactly the situation that Cora deals with every day. Cora was born with two hearts which makes her very valuable. A fact that she has worked extremely hard to hide. She leads a double life posing as her twin brother, Jacob, when fitting. Cora/Jacob helps support her family by acquiring bodies for research and dissection along with her team.

Individuals with unusual physical features start dying at an alarming rate and bodies are disappearing before Cora’s group gets the chance to try to get their hands on them. Something is obviously going on and I had a great time trying to figure it all out. Just when I thought that I knew how things might go, something would happen and I would realize that I was completely wrong. I loved that this book kept me guessing. There were several mysteries happening at the same time and I found them all equally interesting and quite complex.

I thought that the characters were very well done in this book. Cora was smart, tough and resourceful and I found her to be really easy to like. I liked the fact that she was able to really put on a different persona when she was acting as Jacob. Theodore Flint really shook things up a bit in this story and I loved what his character brought to the story. I was never quite sure who should be trusted or which characters would prove to have their own agenda.

This was my first experience listening to Saskia Maarleveld’s narration and I think she did a fabulous job with this story. She really brought the story to life and did a great job with all of the character voices. I think that she was able to express a lot of emotion into her reading which made it possible to really feel what the character is going through at the time. I found that she had a very pleasant reading voice that I found easy to listen to for hours at a time.

I would highly recommend this book to others. This book had a girl with two hearts, a double life, some grave robbing, a rather complex mystery, a fantastic 1850’s New York setting, and even just a bit of romance. I found this to be a highly enjoyable read and cannot wait to read more from this talented author.
About the Author

Lydia Kang is a physician and the author of A Beautiful Poison. She was born in Baltimore, Maryland, and graduated from Columbia University and New York University School of Medicine. She currently lives in the Midwest with her family, where she continues to practice internal medicine.


  1. Complex mystery is my type of read. Great review and I just love the cover!

  2. sounds like a lot going on from reading your great review
    sherry @ fundinmental

  3. That's nice. it's not an author I knew about about but it looks well done

  4. This is such a cool premise! I can see how it would be hard to get away from it!

  5. Interesting premise and the book sounds good.

  6. This sounds like something I might like!

  7. Excellent review! This sounds like I would be in suspense all the time, worried about Cora.

    Anne - Books of My Heart

  8. I am definitely going to get this one from the library, it sounds fantastic. We should have it, she lives in Omaha after all! The problem will be whether or not her work is actually available or if it always has a wait, because she is local. The moment I saw the author's name, I could not figure out why it was familiar. Duh. She's a doctor here at UNMC. I've heard her name dozens of times.

    1. Our library is doing curbside pick-up now and I got this one todaaaaay!

    2. I hope you like it, Sarah! I look forward to your thoughts.

  9. I haven’t seen this before so thank you introducing it to me. It sounds like a great concept and something that I’d enjoy. Great review!

  10. First time I'm seeing this book and I really like the idea of it. I'll have t up on my radar. Definitely something I should grab when I get the chance.

  11. This sounds interesting and a bit different from what I was expecting. I think I had dismissed it as more dystopian but it sounds like it's got some serious mystery elements as well. I will have to look for this one.

  12. this looks super exciting and how different! Glad you enjoyed

  13. I couldn't help but think of Cora as I was reading A Curious Beginning. Veronica Speedwell and she would get along well, I think. I am glad you enjoyed this one. I really enjoyed it as well.

  14. I like Saskia! So I could listen just cos of her

  15. I have a book by Lydia Kang waiting for my in my TBR stack and it is one of my oldest TBR reads. I am very curious to try it now that I know you've read something else by her and it was still a good read. I haven't heard anything about her books in a long while.


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