Sunday, January 4, 2015

Book Review: Lost Lake by Sarah Addison Allen

Pages: 296
Genre: Adult Fiction, Magical Realism
Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton
Release Date: 21/01/2014
A Christmas Present from Mum.

The first time Eby Pim saw Lost Lake, it was on a picture postcard. Just an old photo and a few words on a small square of heavy stock, but when she saw it, she knew she was seeing her future.

That was half a life ago. Now Lost Lake is about to slip into Eby’s past. Her husband George is long passed. Most of her demanding extended family are gone. All that’s left is a once-charming collection of lakeside cabins succumbing to the Southern Georgia heat and damp, and an assortment of faithful misfits drawn back to Lost Lake year after year by their own unspoken dreams and desires.

It’s a lot, but not enough to keep Eby from relinquishing  Lost Lake to a developer with cash in hand, and calling this her final summer at the lake. Until one last chance at family knocks on her door.

Lost Lake is where Kate Pheris spent her last best summer at the age of twelve,  before she learned of loneliness, and heartbreak, and loss. Now she’s all too familiar with those things, but she knows about hope too, thanks to her resilient daughter Devin, and her own willingness to start moving forward. Perhaps at Lost Lake her little girl can cling to her own childhood for just a little longer… and maybe Kate herself can rediscover something that slipped through her fingers so long ago.

One after another, people find their way to Lost Lake, looking for something that they weren’t sure they needed in the first place:  love, closure, a second chance, peace, a mystery solved, a heart mended.  Can they find what they need before it’s too late? 

At once atmospheric and enchanting, Lost Lake shows Sarah Addison Allen at her finest, illuminating the secret longings and the everyday magic that wait to be discovered in the unlikeliest of places.

If you have been reading my blog for a while you will know that I am a big Sarah Addison Fan. I was so excited when I got this book for Christmas. I ended up tossing another book aside and picking this one up instead. I felt like this book was the perfect summer holiday read and just like all the other Sarah Addison Allen books I have read; I wished there was more...

To me picking up a Sarah Addison Allen book is like reuniting with an old friend. The writing style is so familiar and charming that I find it really easy to get into, And really difficult to put down. While reading 'Lost Lake' I ended up staying up a lot later than usual one night because I just needed to find out what happened.

The main character was Kate, yet there are chapters dedicated to telling the story of many of the other characters. Usually this would annoy me as it stalls the main story line, however Addison Allen's characters can be likable  and I am intrigued by their pasts. If the characters have done anything wrong or have unfavorable traits, you are usually positioned to understand why and like them regardless.

Kate was the sort of character that the daydreamer in all of us could probably relate to. She has a good heart, but she's a little lost. The Lost Lake was a bit of an adventure and and escape for her. This was the "last holiday" for Kate and the other characters. I would love to go about all the other characters and my thoughts on them, but then my post would probably end up as long as the actual book.

The book had the usual Sarah Addison Allen element of Magical Realism, which is probably my favourite thing about her novels. Rather than writing about small town mythology or family secrets, the author chose to write about big events that changed peoples lives and caused these unexplained happenings. There was also a lot of talk about signs in this novel. It seemed to me that the characters had already made up their minds before the sign and the sign just served the purpose of reassuring them.

Lost lake was also about friendship and the family that you choose to be surrounded with. Eby treated her friend Lissette like a daughter and Wes like a son/grandson. The guests who stayed at Lost Lake were old friends that stayed at the lake every vacation like it was tradition. The people of Suley all valued the Lake and treated Eby like an old friend.

Overall, I think this book deserves 5 out of 5 stars and a Favourite. I really enjoyed this novel and I can't wait to pick up her next book when it comes out early this year. I highly recommend 'Lost Lake' and all the other Sarah Addison Allen novels to anyone who will listen (or read) !

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1 comment:

Wall-to-wall books said...

I am a huge Sarah Addison Allen fan too and this was my favorite book by her so far! And I've read them all.