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Monday, August 20, 2012

The Ruins of Lace by Iris Anthony

The Ruins of Lace by Iris Anthony
Publisher: Sourcebooks Landmark
Genre: Historical
Length: Full Length (316 pgs)
Heat Level: Sweet
Rating: 5 stars
Reviewed by Stephantois

Lace is a thing like hope.
It is beauty; it is grace.
It was never meant to destroy so many lives.

The mad passion for forbidden lace has infiltrated France, pulling soldier and courtier 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 know demands an impossible length of it. 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.

You know the saying, too many books, too little time? It sums up my dilemma perfectly. Sometimes it’s a choice between fiction and the many books on historical events I want to read by year’s end. Lucky for me I got the best of both worlds in The Ruins of Lace.

It’s a fascinating read and shows how much work and effort the author took in researching the topic of lace and its impact on culture and society in 16th century France. What made it all the more captivating was the author decided to tell this story from lots of viewpoints and how lace, its production, and the need to own it, affected people’s life. I also enjoyed, and excuse the pun, how all these individual’s stories became woven together as the book progressed.

All the characters were well-rounded, and the dialogue natural sounding. You might think a book of this length and subject matter would be slow paced, but this one was anything but. I found myself carrying it with me and was compelled to read what happened next at any chance I got.

I will definitely be looking for more books by Iris Anthony. If you’re looking to read something a little different this fall, I highly recommend this one.