Thursday, February 11

Book Review: The Lace Reader

Title: The Lace Reader

Author: Brunonia Barry

Pages: 385

Summary: "Towner Whitney, the self-confessed unreliable narrator of The Lace Reader, 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, but the disappearance of two women brings Towner home to Salem and the truth about the death of her twin sister to light." The Lace Reader is a tale that spirals into a world of secrets, confused identities, lies, and half-truths in which the reader quickly finds it's nearly impossible to separate fact from fiction, but as Towner Whitney points out early on in the novel, "There are no accidents."

My Rating: 4.5/10

What I liked/disliked about the book: I wasn’t too happy with this book, it ended up being a bit of a disappointment for me, especially considering I’ve been wanting to read it for a while, it ended up falling short of my expectations (I seem to be in a reading rut, last few books I’ve read are doing that, hopefully it changes). The idea behind the story was interesting, taking place in Salem, psychics, lace reader, Salem witches, our narrator who from the first lines admits she lies, so you can’t trusts her, it all had elements to make it an interesting book. And to begin with there was an interesting plot line, but somewhere, it just all fell apart for me.

I didn’t like the characters that much, it wasn’t the fact that the narrator was lying to me throughout the book, it was just I didn’t find anyone character that I could say for sure, I liked. The whole “mystery” behind, Towner’s past was an interesting concept, but by the time the ending came, I didn’t care much about it anymore, there seemed to be to many sub-plots and side stories going on, that did sort of tie together, but was poorly done, leaving me the reader going, “huh?” I think if the author had focused on one or two of these side stories as her main focus it would have been easier.

The writing style is well done, (although it jumped around in narration styles and from past and present without giving hints to the reader that there was a change (with the exception that the characters differed for the most part from past to present). It would even break narration during the same chapter.) The idea behind the story is interesting, and has me interested more in the Salem witch trials and the whole history behind it, but overall, it just wasn’t that great of a read for me.

Would I recommend it to read: If you enjoyed the Thirteenth Tale then I would, if not I'd say maybe try something else. Even if you're a fan of books surrounding the genre of Salem Witches etc, I don't think this is the best book to read, especially as an introduction so to speak of the genre.

What to read next: The Thirteenth Tale

Challenges: Read 'n' Review, Pages Read, 10/10 Category Challenge, 52 in 52 Challenge, 100+ Challenge, Countdown Challenge, New Author Challenge, Support Your Library Challenge,
Wish I Read That Challenge,


  1. I really enjoyed this book...thanks for the review.

  2. I enjoyed this book a lot more than you did as well. Although if you didn't care for the characters then the ending probably didn't throw you like it did me :)

  3. I agree with your thoughts on this book completely. It was just too messy for me and there was too much going on. I also thought the ending was a bit showy and not at all earth shattering to me. I had hoped it would be better, after hearing all the hype.

  4. Thanks for the review.

    Bill ;-)

    Hope you'll check out my book giveaway:

  5. Serena - I'm glad you enjoyed it more than me.

    Samantha - Yeah, I think if I liked the characters, the ending would have been a completely different experience for me.

    Zibilee - I too thought it would be better hearing about all the hype, and it still seems that those like us, who didn't like the book much, are in the minority.

    Dr. Bill - Thanks for stopping by, hope your giveaway went well.

  6. This is the second review I've seen that mentions The Thirteenth Tale in connection with this. I'm not sure that's a good thing as I've yet to read The Thirteenth Tale, and I felt much the same as you did about The Lace Reader. Bits of it were interesting, but it didn't grab me.