Thursday, May 5, 2022

#MacmillanAudio Review of Little Souls by Sandra Dallas performed by Carly Robins

Today I'm reviewing the #MacmillanAudio edition of Sandra Dallas' latest historical masterpiece, Little Souls, set in Denver during the Spanish Flu epidemic and WWI and staring two way ahead of their times sisters.

Publisher: Macmillan Audio
Release Date: 04-26-2022
Length: 8 hours
Source: Publisher for review
Buy It: Audible/ Chirpbooks 



Sandra Dallas's Little Souls is a gripping tale of sisterhood, loyalty, and secrets set in Denver mid America’s last deadly flu pandemic.

Colorado, 1918. World War I is raging overseas, but it’s the home front battling for survival. With the Spanish Flu rampant, Denver’s schools are converted into hospitals, churches and funeral homes are closed, and nightly horse-drawn wagons collect corpses left in the street. Sisters Helen and Lutie have moved to Denver from Ohio after their parents’ death. Helen, a nurse, and Lutie, a carefree advertising designer at Neusteter’s department store, share a small, neat house and each finds a local beau – for Helen a doctor, for Lutie a young student who soon enlists. They make a modest income from a rental apartment in the basement. When their tenant dies from the flu, the sisters are thrust into caring for the woman’s small daughter, Dorothy. Soon after, Lutie comes home from work and discovers a dead man on their kitchen floor and Helen standing above the body, an icepick in hand. She has no doubt Helen killed the man—Dorothy’s father—in self-defense, but she knows that will be hard to prove. They decide to leave the body in the street, hoping to disguise it as a victim of the flu.

Meanwhile Lutie also worries about her fiance “over there”. As it happens, his wealthy mother harbors a secret of her own and helps the sisters as the danger deepens, from the murder investigation and the flu.

Set against the backdrop of an epidemic that feels all too familiar, Little Souls is a compelling tale of sisterhood and of the sacrifices people make to protect those they love most.

A Macmillan Audio production from St. Martin's Press

My Macmillan Audio Review:

Little Souls
Sandra Dallas


NYT Bestseller Sandra Dallas’s latest literary historical is absolutely unputdownable, packed with secrets, lies, heartbreak and healing. Set in Denver during both WWI and the Spanish Flu Pandemic staring two forward thinking sisters, the men who loved them and the little girl who needed them as much as they needed her.

Needless to say its’ eerily familiar to read a historical novel based on the facts of the 1917 flu epidemic that mimics the events of the past couple of years with just as much misinformation, confusion, fear mongering and government cover-ups back then as we all experienced during the Covid-19 pandemic. Then throw in a murder, bootleggers and a World War and Sandra Dallas has herself one powerful novel. The dialogue is period perfect and will take listeners/readers right into the story along with the vivid first-person narrative through Lutie’s eyes. Both sisters plus Dorothy are the definite stars in the novel, they plus a few strong supporting characters brilliantly carry the story. Plus seeing the flu epidemic through the eyes of a nurse like Helen and her doctor fiancĂ© Gil gives the tale a more genuine feel and experiencing the tragedies that befall all three of our female stars produces sympathy and empathy from the audience. Those who love historical novels based on facts, the work of Lauren Willig, Beatriz Williams or the novels of this exceptional author will find this read amazing.

The narration by Carly Robins is exceptional. She finds just the right nuance to become every character from high society to a rough around the edges copper, a prostitute to a small frightened little girl. She also goes between male, female and child voices so expertly it sounds like multiple narrators.

Lutie and Helen Hite moved to Denver following the deaths of their parents and with their father’s life insurance buy a home and set up housekeeping, plus for extra income they rent out a basement apartment to the Streeter family consisting of Mr. Streeter, his wife Maude, and their young daughter Dorothy. The sisters are settling in nicely even with the influenza pandemic raging, Helen a nurse has no problem finding work and Lutie with her fine arts skills has found a job creating ads for a local department store. Both sisters have also found love, Helen is engaged to, Gil a local doctor and Lutie is seeing, Peter a theology student. Then a series of tragedies happen, first Mr. Streeter abandons his family then Maude dies leaving Dorothy an orphan but Helen and Lutie have both fallen in love with the little girl and are determined to adopt her. But that’s in jeopardy when Lutie comes home from work finding Dorothy in shock and Helen holding an ice pick over the dead body of Mr. Streeter.

About the author:
New York Times best-selling author SANDRA DALLAS, the author of 16 adult novels, four young reader novels, and 10 nonfiction books, was dubbed “a quintessential American voice” by Jane Smiley, in Vogue Magazine. Sandra’s novels with their themes of loyalty, friendship, and human dignity have been translated into a dozen foreign languages and have been optioned for films.


  1. Oh my, I must read this one. Great review, Debbie!

  2. Sounds really good, with so much that we can now identify with.