Look into the lace? 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. Can you read your future in a piece of lace? All of the Whitney women can. But the last time Towner read, it killed her sister and nearly robbed Towner of her own sanity. Vowing never to read lace again, her resolve is tested when faced with the mysterious, unsolvable disappearance of her beloved Great Aunt Eva, Salem’s original Lace Reader. Told from opposing and often unreliable perspectives, the story engages the reader’s own beliefs. Should we listen to Towner, who may be losing her mind for the second time? Or should we believe John Rafferty, a no nonsense New York detective, who ran away from the city to a simpler place only to find himself inextricably involved in a psychic tug of war with all three generations of Whitney women? Does either have the whole story? Or does the truth lie somewhere in the swirling pattern of the lace?
I wanted this to be better than it was. I mean, don’t get me wrong-it was a good little read, it just wasn’t as good as I was hoping for by the description.
The character and the story-line are definitely intriguing. The main character has a sordid past filled with tragedy and rich paranormal history, and the concept of coming from a long line of “lace readers” (women who can read fortunes in the lace that they create),while living in/near Salem MA which is thick with magical history is definitely what sucked me into the book at first. There are disappearances, and bad guys, and crazy cults-all with a couple of different romance entanglements that complicate things a bit.
But the book as a whole feels very disjointed. It starts with the narrative changing based on the character or the memory, and as soon as you get used to that it just starts feeling a bit confusing in other ways. There’s a chance it’s meant to seem jumbled, so you can understand where the main character is coming from a little bit better, but you aren’t aware that the disjointed feeling has any kind of plot application until the very end-and then it feels like it’s just kind of thrown at you and you’re sitting there going “what?”
Not “what?” as in “wow that twist was so unexpected!”, but “what?” as in “no really, I don’t understand… Can you re-explain it?” I mean, I think I understand what she meant to do there-and I definitely understand the basis for the twist, but still… There’s a second book, and part of me wants to follow up on it to see if it clarifies things, but the other part of me doesn’t want to bother just because I’m afraid it’ll be as disjointed and hard to follow as the first one.
So this book definitely gets an A for originality, but a C for execution.