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.
–Brunonia Barry - The Lace Reader - c.2006 pg.3
When I first started reading this book I’ll admit to being a little bit confused. It was group read, for HistoricalFavorites, where was the history aspect. I kept waiting for flashbacks to old Salem and witch hunts. But instead I got the story of Towner Whitney and her family, and how the past is always around, especially when you try to ignore it.
Many of the Whitney family have the gift of reading lace, they can tell a lot about a person and their future, but ever since her sister committed suicide Towner has tried to escape that life. She herself suffered so much from the trauma of that experience that she felt she needed electro-shock therapy in order to overcome her anxieties. But that treatment ripped away many of her memories; now, back in Salem after her aunt’s disappearance Towner is forced to reconnect with people; friends and enemies from her past.
I found the book a little slow to start, but as I mentioned, I came to it thinking it was about something else, so that may be the reason. I enjoyed it while I read it, but until the final few chapters I don’t think I ever really loved it. A satisfying, and well-written book, I’ll keep my eye out for Barry’s second book, but I’m not going to go raving about this one.