Monday, July 12, 2010

Review: The Lace Reader

The Lace Reader: A Novel

The Lace Reader really took me by surprise, and I'm wondering now why it took me so long to pick it up and read it. Seriously. It's been in my house since it's release in 2006, but while I always wanted to read it, I never sat down with it. I am so glad I finally did! The more I think about the book, the more I like it.

The story is about a woman named Towner who lives in California. She actually grew up in Salem, Massachusetts, but moved away about 15 years ago after a terrible accident, and she never returned. That is, not until her great-aunt Eva goes missing. Towner's return to Salem brings back old memories of her childhood and of her twin sister Lyndley, who died when they were 17. The women in Towner's family are lace readers, meaning they can read the future in lace patterns. Towner can also read lace. Throughout this story, Towner and the other characters are trying to piece together what happened to Eva, and what happened to another girl in town who goes missing. Towner also has to come to turns with what happened to her twin sister.

I don't usually pick up books about twins, especially when one of the twins is dead. I have a twin sister so it's a touchy subject with me. When I was maybe 11 years old, I read the most depressing book ever called Bringing Nettie Back. It's about a girl who is best friends with twins, and one of the twins has a brain hemmorrage and is then brain damaged. When she wakes up in the hospital, she is not the same happy young girl she used to be. Instead, she acts like a small child and doesn't remember anything. She has nothing of her former bubbly personality inside of her.

That book depressed me to no end, and I still think about it a lot today. It's haunted me. What if that happened to me or my own identical twin sister?? It would be horrible.

Needless to say, I wonder if the whole dead twin aspect had something to do with me putting off reading this book. I have to say too though that I loved the way Barry handled the twins and their connection. At the end, you realize just how connected Towner still is to her twin sister, even though they've been apart for so long. It touched my heart, and I really believe that if I were in those same circumstances, I'd feel my sister's presence inside of me too.

I definitely recommend this book to anyone who likes a little detective work (while you're reading, you're also trying to figure out what has happened). The book has some slower parts, but it ends with a bang. I can't wait to pick up Brunonia Barry's newest novel, The Map of True Places.

Title: The Lace Reader
Author: Brunonia Barry
Date of Publication: 2006
Number of Pages: 304
Source: My mom

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