Friday, February 8, 2013

Review: The Ruins of Lace by Iris Anthony

Publication Date: October 2012
Format: Paperback 326pp 

Synopsis (From the Publisher):
"The mad passion for forbidden lace has infiltrated France, pulling soldier and courtier alike into its web. For those who want the best, Flemish lace is the only choice, an exquisite perfection of thread and air. For those who want something they don’t have, Flemish lace can buy almost anything––or anyone. 
For Lisette, lace begins her downfall, and the only way to atone for her sins is to outwit the noble who now demands the impossible. To fail means certain destruction. But for Katharina, lace is her salvation. It is who she is; it is what she does. If she cannot make this stunning tempest of threads, a dreaded fate awaits. 
The most lucrative contraband in Europe, with its intricate patterns and ephemeral hope, threatens to cost them everything. Lace may be the deliverance for which they all pray...or it may bring the ruin and imprisonment they all fear."

My Review: 

The Ruins of Lace tells the story of seven vastly different people, and how one coveted length of lace brought them together in a web of scandal, passion, and murder. The chapters alternate between these seven characters, so by the end you will only read a few chapters from each character. While this is a bit sporadic at the beginning, especially since the characters initially have nothing to do with one another, it does become a very interesting aspect of the novel, and if it was not present, the story would not have the same impact.

It's been a long time since I have finished a book and not wanted to pick up another right away, just so I could continue to savor the last one a bit longer; this novel ended that drought. After reading so many historical novels surrounding kings and queens, or other prominent people, it was refreshing to read one that is so unique and promotes a desire to research a new aspect of history. Not only was this an intriguing read, the pace was also quick and the plot engaging. Also, the fact that the author used the making of lace to symbolize how the characters lives were woven together by the contraband was a beautiful aspect.

If you are looking for a good historical fiction novel that stands in its own corner, I definitely recommend taking a look at The Ruins of Lace. Simply put, it's a brilliant debut novel for Iris Anthony.

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