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The Lace Reader (2006)

by Brunonia Barry

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Salem Series (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
3,2062753,199 (3.53)526
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.

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» See also 526 mentions

English (268)  Italian (4)  Spanish (2)  Norwegian (1)  Dutch (1)  German (1)  All languages (277)
Showing 1-5 of 268 (next | show all)
Adult fiction/mystery-drama. *Spoiler alert* This is one of those unreliable narrator type books, though it isn't apparent until the second half of the book or so. ( )
  reader1009 | Jul 3, 2021 |
This book grabbed my heart. ( )
  MarlaBurr | Mar 14, 2021 |
Atmospheric and haunting, "The Lace Reader" slowly ensnares you in its langorous descriptions and heady language. It isn't really a nail-biting page-turner but works its literary spell in other, less flashy ways. I enjoyed sinking in to Barry's nautical, dreamy summer Salem and unraveling its mysteries. In the last few pages Barry turns the whole plot right on its head but I didn't feel suckered at all, just wildly impressed at how it was pulled off. Well done. ( )
  bugaboo_4 | Jan 3, 2021 |
Every gift has a price . . . every piece of lace has a secret.

Towner Whitney, the self-confessed unreliable narrator, 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. Now the disappearance of two women is bringing Towner back home to Salem—and is bringing to light the shocking truth about the death of her twin sister.
  Gmomaj | Nov 6, 2020 |
Listening to the audiobook of The Lace Reader made me want to do two things: I want to visit Salem, Massachusetts, and I want to get a lace reading. The narrator was well-chosen for this book, and her voice made the listening experience pleasurable and interesting.

A good reader, however, cannot rescue a story if it is not well-written. Fortunately, this story was well-crafted and intriguing. I have no idea if there are people who read fortunes in locally made Ipswich Lace, but in this story the concept is totally believable.

Set in Salem, Massachusetts, and on nearby mythical Yellow Dog Island, the story includes local witches, fortune telling with lace, women supporting women who are escaping abusive husbands, and mental illness. The author, Brunonia Barry, skillfully weaves the threads of these elements throughout the story as if she were composing a piece of lace through which the story is being told.

My favorite part of the book was the beginning of each chapter, which featured instructions for how to tell fortunes with lace from The Lace Readers Guide, a fictitious book written by one of the characters. I want to read it, if only it existed.
( )
  LoriFox | Oct 24, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 268 (next | show all)
For 15 år siden, da Towner Whitneys liv ble lagt i grus, sverget hun på to ting: At hun aldri skulle sette sine ben i hjembyen Salem igjen. Og at hun aldri mer ville lese i kniplinger. For Towner har arvet denne sjette sansen, den mange av Whitney-klanens kvinner er utstyrt med, den som gjør dem i stand til å spå andres skjebne.
Det er bare ett eneste menneske som kan få Towner tilbake til Salem: Grandtante Eva - den beste kniplingleseren av dem alle. Nå er den gamle kvinnen sporløst borte. Kan Towner finne sannheten om familiens dypt bevarte hemmeligheter i Evas forlatte hus?

"Kniplingenes hemmelighet" foregår i fargerike Salem, byen som er berømt for fortidens utallige heksebål. Historien om Towner favner vidt og er spenningsroman, slektskrønike, historisk skildring og magisk fortelling - men først og fremst er det en sterk og varm beretning som fanger leseren fra Towners første, skjebnesvangre ord: Mitt navn er Towner Whitney. Nei, det er ikke helt sant. I virkeligheten er fornavnet mitt Sophya. Tro aldri på det jeg sier. Jeg lyver i ett sett. Jeg er en gal kvinne - dette siste er san
added by kirstenlund | edithttp://www.aschehoug.no (Feb 26, 2011)

» Add other authors (6 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Brunonia Barryprimary authorall editionscalculated
Bresnahan, AlyssaNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sandberg, AnnaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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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
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.
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)

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.

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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.
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Average: (3.53)
0.5 3
1 34
1.5 7
2 95
2.5 36
3 287
3.5 104
4 375
4.5 51
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