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The lace reader by Brunonia Barry
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The lace reader (original 2006; edition 2006)

by Brunonia Barry

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
2,557None2,343 (3.54)452
Member:EmScape
Title:The lace reader
Authors:Brunonia Barry
Info:New York : William Morrow, [2008], c2006.
Collections:Your library, To read
Rating:****
Tags:fiction, hardcover, read, read in 2012

Work details

The Lace Reader by Brunonia Barry (2006)

2008 (34) 2009 (25) abuse (35) ARC (38) contemporary fiction (31) family (34) fiction (364) fortune telling (19) lace (45) library (14) magic (13) Massachusetts (53) mental illness (55) mystery (111) New England (31) novel (26) own (16) paranormal (26) psychics (32) read (28) read in 2008 (25) Salem (158) Salem MA (21) sisters (25) to-read (90) twins (69) unread (15) witchcraft (31) witches (104) women (15)
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» See also 452 mentions

English (221)  Spanish (2)  Norwegian (1)  Italian (1)  German (1)  Dutch (1)  All languages (227)
Showing 1-5 of 221 (next | show all)
I abandoned this one just short of the one-quarter mark for the following reasons:

• Chapter 9, just finished, consists of a very long, exhaustively detailed, heavily dialogue-ridden scene that seems pointless. It should have taken a lot less, it seems to me, to convey whatever this protracted scene was intended to get across. Show, yes, good plan, but you don't have to show every damn thing. My confidence in the author's ability to be selective dropped too low.

• I put it down for two days, and when I picked it up again I couldn't remember who half of the characters were. They'd made little or no impression.

• It's in the present tense. I gave it much more of a chance than I do most present-tense fictional narratives--some get only one page--but it wore me down.

Too bad, because I liked the setting and the premise (even though I had to go to the Internet to find out what a lace pillow is because the author didn't tell me) and I was mildly interested in the setup.

(Unrated)
  Meredy | Feb 14, 2014 |
Gorgeous family saga which takes place off the coast of New England. Surprises every where! ( )
  BookishDame | Dec 15, 2013 |
This was a good mystery. Pretty hard to figure out before the end. It takes place in Salem, Massachusetts and references witches. The book starts with, "never believe me, I lie". ( )
  Kristelh | Nov 16, 2013 |
Ok book. Not one of my favorites but interesting storyline. ( )
  catsinstacks | Nov 12, 2013 |
This book was a great read. it kept me interested throughout. very descriptive concerning boating and the "yellow Dog Island". It is also written with a fog of mystery around Towner and her visions and her mental illness. Cal is an appropriate horrible villain. ( )
  Smits | Aug 19, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 221 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (6 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Brunonia Barryprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bresnahan, AlyssaNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sandberg, AnnaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
The Lace Reader must stare at the piece of lace until the pattern blurs and the face of the Seeker disappears completely behind the veil. When the eyes begin to fill with tears and the patience is long exhausted, there will appear a glimpse of something not quite seen. In this moment an image will begin to form . . . in the space between what is real and what is only imagined. --The Lace Reader's Guide
Dedication
To my wonderful husband, Gary, and to my sister-in-law Joanne's magical red hair
First words
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.
Quotations
He was worse than a Starbucks snob, but he didn't tell her that. He didn't even drink Starbucks coffee. Used to. Then, last year, his daughter had saved up her allowance and bought him a French press for Christmas, and now he couldn't drink his coffee any other way.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Wikipedia in English (1)

Book description
Towner Whitney, descended from a line of mind readers and fortune tellers, returns to Salem, Massachusetts to recover from several traumas and discovers that her great-aunt Eva has suspiciously drowned, and local cop John Rafferty looks into the mystery while falling for Towner.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0061624764, Hardcover)

Amazon Best of the Month, August 2008: Brunonia Barry dreamt she saw a prophecy in a piece of lace, a vision so potent she spun it into a novel. The Lace Reader retains the strange magic of a vivid dream, though Barry's portrayal of modern-day Salem, Massachusetts--with its fascinating cast of eccentrics--is reportedly spot-on. Some of its stranger residents include generations of Whitney women, with a gift for seeing the future in the lace they make. Towner Whitney, back to Salem from self-imposed exile on the West Coast, has plans for recuperation that evaporate with her great-aunt Eva's mysterious drowning. Fighting fear from a traumatic adolescence she can barely remember, Towner digs in for answers. But questions compound with the disappearance of a young woman under the thrall of a local fire-and-brimstone preacher, whose history of violence against Whitney women makes the situation personal for Towner. Her role in cop John Rafferty's investigation sparks a tentative romance. And as they scramble to avert disaster, the past that had slipped through the gaps in Towner's memory explodes into the present with a violence that capsizes her concept of truth. Readers will look back at the story in a new light, picking out the clues in this complex, lovely piece of work. --Mari Malcolm

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:28:57 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

A young woman descended from a long line of mind readers and fortune tellers has returned to her hometown of Salem, Massachusetts, for rest and relaxation. Any tranquility in her life is short-lived, however, when her aunt drowns under mysterious circumstances.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 6 descriptions

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