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Literary Friday: Lost Lake

Friday, February 7, 2014

This week I read Lost Lake by Sarah Addison Allen.  It's her first book since her battle with breast cancer, and I have been anxiously awaiting its release.

Although this book contains the typical magical realism of Allen's books, this one is a bit more literary and deep with an overall theme of grief and the adverse effects of holding onto it.  Because I've been grieving over the loss of our Westie baby Bonnie Blue, it was a tough read for me.  The book is also about working through grief which leads to closure and hope.

Eby and her wealthy husband George Pim return from their year-long European honeymoon and give-up their wealth for life at Lost Lake in rural Georgia.  Fast-forward fifty years later:  George has passed away, and fewer folks are vacationing at Lost Lake.  Eby still has her faithful helper Lisette whom Eby and George saved from the freezing Seine River on their honeymoon.  Lisette has lived with a manifestation of grief since she was sixteen: careless words over dinner caused her teenage lover to kill himself, and Lisette hasn't eaten dinner since.  Lisette doesn't want Eby to sell Lost Lake as it's her home, and neither do a handful of faithful guests.  As they prepare a going away party for Eby, the entire nearby town of Suley catches wind of the fĂȘte and contribute everything from entertainment to food in the hopes of discouraging Eby from selling.  But Eby wants to travel and visit the European cities she visited during her honeymoon.

When Kate Pherris awakens from a year of grieving over her husband's death, she decides on a whim to take her daughter Devin to visit her Aunt Eby at Lost Lake.  Kate spent a magical summer at Lost Lake when she was twelve, and she yearns for Devin to experience a magical and carefree summer.  Her quick thinking spared Kate and her daughter from an imminent move to her overbearing (and Congressional hopeful) mother-in-law's Atlanta home, not to mention a reality TV crew.  Kate reunites with her friend from that long-ago summer, Wes.  Wes has suffered a devastating loss of his own and is in desperate need of healing, too.

Please don't be put-off because of the book's theme.  The characterizations are so rich and well-developed: from a character whose "charms" land her any married man she wants; an alligator who communicates telepathically; a retired literature teacher who believes in rewriting endings; and a character who recognizes true love and waits patiently for years all contribute to the depth of Allen's prose. Plus, there is plenty of humor readers expect in her books.  Lost Lake the place might be shallow, but definitely not the book. This is Allen's best so far…..what a comeback!

I was lucky to receive a set of postcards from Macmillan.  Each depicts places mentioned in the book.

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These are my two favorites:

Here is the book trailer for Lost Lake:

What have you been reading?  This is a link party!

Literary Friday

Until next time…

Happy reading!
Ricki Jill


  1. That looks really good, RJ! I didn't know there were trailers for books!

  2. The postcards are wonderful! I can't wait to read this book...she's one of my favorite authors! Sweet hugs!

  3. I'm reading a Clyde Edgerton book right now, Lunch at the Piccadilly. This is the 2nd book of his that I've read lately. They aren't riveting but the vernacular just draws me in. Feels like we know everyone in the stories.

  4. Oh doll, I've thought of you all week. You're in my prayers. I'm into 'The Lair' and scaring the pants off of myself.

  5. I was not exactly thinking about reading this book until you last paragraph. Well written review. Love the postcards.
    Hope you are better, take care...........


  6. I'm so glad this one is a success! I just got it from the library, and can't wait to start it. *hugs* Books heal.

  7. I am reading Eleanor & Park (some blogger recommended it) ;) This one does sound like a fun read, although I might have to wait a bit, as it is very possible that I recently purchased SIX new books (on of them, Dinner, that a blogger specifically did not recommend, but it just kept calling me on BOTH trips the the store).

  8. I'm so glad you enjoyed it. The postcards are awesome!


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I'm Ricki Jill. Welcome! I'm honored that you're reading my blog. I enjoy sharing my creative lifestyle @ The Bookish Dilettante. For more information about my blog, please read the Start Here page. Thank-you for stopping by, and I hope you'll consider following me via email.

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