‘The Lion Tamer Who Lost’ spoiler-free review!

Hi everyone! Today is my stop on the blog tour for The Lion Tamer Who Lost by Louise Beech. This is the first book I’ve read by Beech and I’m very impressed!


What the book is about…

Long ago Andrew made a childhood wish. One he has always kept in a silver box with a too-big lid that falls off. When it finally comes true, he wishes it hadn’t…

Long ago Ben dreamed of going to Africa to volunteer at a lion reserve. When he finally goes there, it isn’t for the reasons he imagined…

Ben and Andrew keep meeting where they least expect. Some collisions are by design, but are they for a reason? Ben’s father would disown him for his relationship with Andrew, so they must hide their love. Andrew is determined to make it work, but secrets from his past threaten to ruin everything.

Ben escapes to Zimbabwe to finally fulfil his lifelong ambition. But will he ever return to England? To Andrew? To the truth?

A dark and poignant drama, The Lion Tamer Who Lost is also a mesmerisingly beautiful love story, with a tragic heart.


What I thought of it…

This was a wonderfully moving story. I went into this book knowing very little about it and I would suggest other readers do the same, because each new development really had an impact. As the story unfolded, I became more and more invested, and fell deeper in love with the characters and the setting.

The writing here is top quality, with evocative descriptions that reminded me of my time in Uganda (though I wasn’t on a lion reserve!) I found it to be a very immersive reading experience. The author conjured both the sounds and smells of Africa, and the more subdued gloom of the UK; I was completely transported.

Louise Beech deftly explores themes of love and family, creating a multi-layered plot full of nuance. There are honestly so many levels to this book. Again, I will say that it’s best to go in blind and let the story sweep you along. I don’t think I could do it justice with a summary anyway, it’s just so clever and compelling. I definitely did not expect the direction things took and this really added to the emotional impact the story had on me.

I’m really pleasantly surprised by how much I loved this one and definitely recommend it to readers who like their books full of heart.


the lion tamer who lost book review


Make sure you check out the other stops on the tour for more thoughts on The Lion Tamer Who Lost! Huge thanks to Anne Cater/Orenda Books for providing me with an ARC!

The Lion Tamer Blog Tour Poster Final.jpg

2 thoughts on “‘The Lion Tamer Who Lost’ spoiler-free review!

  1. Pingback: A-Z bookish survey! | the paperback piano

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