Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Haunting New Book

Brunonia Barry has published a book that highlights the changes in the publishing world. Before Morrow picked it up for a cool $2 million dollars, The Lace Reader was self published and exploded in popularity simply through word-of-mouth. It wasn't long before the main-stream publishers came calling and the auction began.

Listen to an NPR podcast interview with Brunonia Barry!

I recently picked up a copy of this book and was immediately sucked into the story of Towner Whitney, estranged member of the Whitney family of women who can read fortunes and tell the future with only a piece of lace. Towner admits up front that she has refused to exercise this talent for years (since the death of her sister) and that she is a liar and untrustworthy narrator. I quickly forgot this forewarning as the story unfolded in front of me.

Towner returns to her hometown of Salem, Massachusetts, heart and body sore, only to discover that her beloved great-aunt is missing. Her body is soon found on a local beach and Towner uneasily begins to suspect foul play. Various small town characters, some straight out of the town's witch-hunting history, begin to make their appearances in her aunt's small yet popular tea room. As Towner struggles to come to terms with her great aunt's death, her mother's cold behavior, and her own dark secrets in this tiny close-knit town, the truth seems destined to reveal itself like the interconnected patterns of lace.

Happy Reading!

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