Paperback Date: August 18,2009
I had this book on my TBR pile since late last summer and I never got to read it so this was a perfect time to take it down of the shelf and read it.
ABOUT THE BOOK:
In the tradition of The Thirteenth Tale, Brunonia Barry’s bewitching gothic novel, The Lace Reader, is a phenomenon. Called “[a] richly imagined saga of passion, suspense, and magic” by Time Magazine, it is a haunting and remarkable tale told by an unforgettable, if strangely unreliable narrator—a woman from an enigmatic Salem family who can foretell the future in patterns of lace. The Lace Reader was a runaway New York Times bestseller—hitting the top lists in major cities across the country, from Boston to Chicago to Los Angeles—and has immediately established debut author Brunonia Barry as a major force in contemporary American fiction.
Every gift has a price . . .
Every piece of lace has a secret . . .
My name is Towner Whitney. No, that’s not exactly true. My real first name is Sophya. Never believe me. I lie all the time. . . .
Towner Whitney, the self-confessed unreliable narrator of The Lace Reader, hails from a family of Salem women who can read the future in the patterns in lace, and who have guarded a history of secrets going back generations, but the disappearance of two women brings Towner home to Salem and the truth about the death of her twin sister to light.
The Lace Reader is a mesmerizing tale that spirals into a world of secrets, confused identities, lies, and half-truths in which the reader quickly finds it’s nearly impossible to separate fact from fiction, but as Towner Whitney points out early on in the novel, “There are no accidents.”
I have to admit I didn’t know what to expect when I started to read the book. With an opening line like this:
My name is Towner Whitney. No, that’s not exactly true. My real first name is Sophya. Never believe me. I lie all the time.
It was that line that hooked me into the book. I had a hard time to put the book down and ended up devouring the book in a two day span and that was only because I read this while I was on vacation other wise I am sure I would have read it in a day.
The book takes place in Salem, Massachusetts.
The main character Towner has flown in from California when her brother calls to let her know that Aunt Eva is missing. Towner hasn’t been back to Salem for over a decade and is very reluctant to be back. Towner is staying at her Great Aunt Eva’s house. Towner begins to have visions of past happenings and she also gets visits from Eva’s ghost. At first she thinks they are real until they find her aunts body and she knows differently now.
We begin to see Towner struggling with second-guessing herself because she isn’t sure whether she is going crazy again or if she is really experiencing the events. We discover that Towner was hospitalized after having suffered from depression and hallucinations at the age of 17. Her twin sister had committed suicide just before Towner was hospitalized. She has memory gaps that were caused from the shock-therapy she’d received as part of treatment.
Even though the book is mainly told my Towner, there is also another person who tells some of the story and that is Rafferty (a police officer) and he is involved because he is investing the disappearance of Eva who has turned into a friend to Rafferty.
What really happens? How much is believable and how much is a lie?
This was a great read with a little bit of mystery and love. I love that each chapter began with The Lace Readers Guide. Another thing I enjoyed was the cliches that were said that Aunt Eva use to say, such as “He’s crazy as a loon.”, “Two bricks shy of a load.” and “Not the sharpest tool in the shed.” and many more.
This is Brunonia Barry’s debut novel.
You can see the trailer for the book and other stuff here: The Lace Reader
Soon, LaceReader.com will also have a downloadable t-shirt iron-on design and printable signage for booksellers.
In the September issue of Book Page Contest, there will be a sweepstakes in which the grand prize is a trip for two to Salem, two nights at The Hawthorne Hotel, and a guided Lace Reader tour of Salem with Brunonia. (US only)
Brunonia Barry is going on tour again, and here’s her schedule:
9/8 – Bellingham, WA – Village Books – Reading and Signing
9/10 – Oakland – A Great Good Place for Books – Reading and Signing
9/12 – San Mateo – M is for Mystery…and More – Reading and Signing
9/14 – Los Angeles – Vroman’s Bookstore – Reading and Signing
9/15—Edwards, CO – VIP Customer Book Club Event
9/20—Andover, MA – Meet the Author Benefit for PATHS
10/12 Mequon, WI Next Chapter Bookshop
10/13 Dallas, TX Legacy Books10/20 – Lexington, MA Library
10/22- Swampscott, MA Library10/27- Destination Salem Lunch, Hampton Falls Library
11/18th 10 AM, Exeter Library, Exeter, NH.
Here are some upcoming virtual blog tours of The Lace Reader:
-Sept 3/09 http://www.eclecticbooklover.com/
-Sept 4/09 http://shhhimreading.blogspot.com/
-Sept 7/09 http://literatehousewife.com/
-Sept 9/09 http://bookopolis.blogspot.com/
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