book cover of The Light of Luna Park
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The Light of Luna Park

(2021)
A novel by

 
 
In the spirit of The Orphan Train and Before We Were Yours, a historical debut about a nurse who chooses to save a baby's life, and risks her own in the process, exploring the ties of motherhood and the little-known history of Coney Island and America's first incubators.

A nurse's choice. A daughter's search for answers.

New York City, 1926. Nurse Althea Anderson's heart is near breaking when she witnesses another premature baby die at Bellevue Hospital. So when she reads an article detailing the amazing survival rates of babies treated in incubators in an exhibit at Luna Park, Coney Island, it feels like the miracle she has been searching for. But the doctors at Bellevue dismiss Althea and this unconventional medicine, forcing her to make a choice between a baby's life and the doctors' wishes that will change everything.

Twenty-five years later, Stella Wright is falling apart. Her mother has just passed, she quit a job she loves, and her marriage is struggling. Then she discovers a letter that brings into question everything she knew about her mother, and everything she knows about herself.

The Light of Luna Park is a tale of courage and an ode to the sacrificial love of mothers.

Genre: Historical

Praise for this book

"Is there anything better than falling into a novel that asks an ethical question and then answers it with a big story that arrows straight into the question's heart? No, I would say: Nothing better. What would you do to save a child? Addison Armstrong asks in this assured debut that ushers us deep into a fascinating moment in history where obstetrics and women's choices and the shadow line between circus and science combine. The Light of Luna Park got me, took me, taught me, and in the end, shook me." - Sarah Blake

"The Light of Luna Park is a gripping story of one woman’s determination to save a premature baby and a daughter’s quest to discover the truth about her mother intertwined with the fascinating history of the incubator. It’s an emotional, and at times suspenseful novel about the strength of love and the importance of perseverance that will capture the reader’s heart." - Georgie Blalock

"A dual timeline, a fascinating historical setting, a baby, a nurse and above all, courage. This is my kind of story! Thank you, Addison Armstrong, for writing such an intriguing and heartfelt novel." - Diane Chamberlain

"At once a fascinating slice of history and a compelling story filled with relatable characters. Addison Armstrong has woven a beautiful tale around the sacrifices and hard choices made for love, and highlights the work of the extraordinary individuals who stood up against the widespread, harsh beliefs of the time. This is a wonderful debut. Congratulations to Ms. Armstrong!" - Louise Fein

"Compassionate and evocative, filled with fascinating historical detail, The Light of Luna Park is the story of a woman finding the strength to face impossible decisions as she struggles to protect the life of a child." - Fiona Valpy


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