The Secrets of Lost Stones
Thirty-two-year-old Jess Abbot has lost everything: her job, her apartment, and—most heart-wrenching—her eight-year-old son, Chance, to a tragic accident. Haunted by memories and grief, Jess packs what’s left and heads for the small mountain t ...more
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Availability: 100 copies available, 1765 people requesting
Giveaway dates: Aug 04 - Aug 31, 2019
Countries available: U.S.
It's fascinating how this rag-tag selection of very different people all end up sharing a house, each with their own miserable pasts, yet they make it work. There were a lot of surp ...more
Lucy is a mysterious woman, known as the witch of Pine Lake, who has surrounded herself with lost souls—most living, and some only partially alive—whose stories still have “loose ends” that need tying up. The problem? Lucy can’t ...more
I only wish that we could have met Lucy earlier in other episodes and stories. Meeting her so late in life, Lucy being 85, makes me know we’ve missed so many good stories about her. The storyline is reminiscent of the Hallmarks the good witch… and just like with that show , I would have enjoyed more flamboyant examples of Lucy’s power, Chances development into such a powerful ghost entity, and a hint of where Star and Jess go now. Ending up back in foster care for 8 months wa ...more
This book was nothing like I expected and different from my usual read... but I was captured from the first page !
Lucy is the witch of Pine Lake and she knows things past and present before they even happen !
Jess and Star are two people with such hurt in their hearts from losing people in their lives !
Somehow Lucy puts them together so they can help each other !
I laughed and cried and fell in love with the writing and the story !
Thank you to lake union publishing for an ARC ...more
My First Read choice for August, it's listed as Contemporary Fiction - I would list it as paranormal. It's an interesting story, a lot of people with a lot of secrets and a facilitator who brings everything together. I enjoyed the book and the characters and would read more by this author.
Jess is still reeling from the loss of her son several years ago. Star is just trying to survive a life on the streets. Lucy is the one that is going to bring them together, into a mismatched family.
As the secrets and memories begin to surface for both, they have to learn to deal with the pain in different ways, but each path that they are on are leading them towards each other, as much as they a ...more
Lucy is known as the "witch of Pine Lake". Her mission is to tie up "loose ends".
In reality, she is an elderly woman who deeply cares about people and has a sixth sense. Right?
I absolutely loved this wonderful, eccentric person! I thought her clues were spot on and made me think while reading each page.
Lucy knows both the past and present pain of Jess and Star and why they need closure, ...more
and her positive review
drew me to this book.
is ever so intriguing.
You just have to know
the who, what, where,
when, why and how,
is all this Happening.
3.6 Fascinating Stars.
Melissa Payne has brought forth a treasure trove of a novel. This novel speaks quite loudly through the characters and plotting. The book is one that immediately caught my interest, and I read it through in one sitting. My sleep suffered, but for a great novel. So I view that as a pretty good payoff.
This is very well-crafted, and it is skillful in filing out fascinating little pieces that come together in truly excellent form. There are three main characters, t ...more
I do like a magic realism story, and as a teacher, I'm always interested in teen stories. The setting is a part of the US I am unfamiliar with, so that's a nice perk. No question that the author, Melissa Payne, is a storyteller.
I enjoyed the characters, especially Star and Lucy. The entire plot toggles back and forth between Jess's and Star's point of view (but in third person), sometimes overlapping a bit. As in life, everyone understands experiences ...more
I am glad to have chosen “Secret of Lost Stones” as my Kindle First Read for August. I was surprised but delighted with this debut novel, and happier to discover a mystery or three. Yes, there are murders hidden in this well-written, fantastical work of women’s fiction and magical realism—which begins with Jess and Star, who are down on their luck with little to thei ...more
This sounded like a beautiful tale, and I was intrigued to read it. Unfortunately, it fell flat for me.
The writing isn't bad. Payne is very detailed, her language is very tangible, and the grammar is good. However, it just isn't my type of writing. I didn't like it. Blame it completely on personal preference, but I never fell in love with the words (this could also be because of some cheesy and cliche sections).
The characters never ...more
You have no idea how much I loved this book! While it was a little predictable (my only criticism of it), I thought it was absolutely magical and unlike anything else I've ever read. I won't be forgetting these characters any time soon-- especially Lucy, who might be the best character I've encountered since I met a little old man named Ove in A Man Called Ove. I have a particular fondness for e ...more
Thirty-two-year-old Jess Abbot has lost everything: her job, her apartment, and—most heart-wrenching—her eight-year-old son, Chance, to a tragic accident. Haunted by memories and grief, Jess packs what’s left and heads for the small mountain town of Pine Lake, where she takes a position as caregiver to an eccentric old woman.
A rumored clairvoyant, Lucy is strange but welcoming and immediately intuits Jess as a “loose end” in need of closure. But Jess isn’t the only guest in Lucy’s l ...more
-Lucy, from the novel
This was another free novel from Amazon First Reads. It was intriguing, to be sure. I had a hard time putting it down midway through. I am rating it a 4.
Protagonist Jess Abbot, is a young woman seemingly with nothing more to lose, when she tries a change of location and winds up in the small town of Pine Lake. There she soon meets an eccentric old lady named Lucy who hi ...more
A rumored clairvoyant, Lucy is strange but welcoming and immediately intuits Jess as a “loose end” in need of closure. But Jess isn’t ...more
This novel, a debut for Melissa Payne, is well written with well developed characters and plot. Star is an amazing survivor who at the young age of 8 became an orphan and was then shuffled off to 15 foster homes, some good but most not. At 15 Star decided to take matters in her own hands and becomes one of the many anonymous teens living on the streets of Denver. Then everything changes. This book is a very good read about guilt, fear, courage an ...more
There's a ton of hidden inner suffering going on all around us. That's what I took from Ms. Wayne's story. People become adept at hiding their pain and most of us are uncomfortable and so choose to turn our eyes from it. Loss shared becomes a pathway to letting others get close enough to care, which can't erase but does soften the loss.
I thought both the stones and crossword clues were interesting ways to keep bumping all these characters together. The dead v ...more
This book took a while to get into and I wasn’t sure if I was going to enjoy it. I was intrigued by the characters and wanted to know was going on. Who is Lucy, really? What does she know about Jess and Star? Who’s Ben and what is his deal? It took 50 or 60 pages for me to really get into. It’s worth sticking with. Trust me. I fell in love with the book, the writing, the characters, their lives and the events they find themselves caught up in. The book is ...more
I really enjoyed the undercurrents of the supernatural mixed in with the resolution of the past and gradually getting to know the characters and how their lives were interwoven . It was easy to feel sympathy for both Star and Jess and all the way through book I was hoping there could be a happy ending for them . I would have liked to have ...more
The narrat ...more
The author hooked me in from the beginning with the likable characters and the mystery behind these “loose ends” and how they’re connected. There was a good mix of predictability and twists and I was eager to keep turning the pages. While I enjoyed the pace (for the most part), I felt some of it was rushed through or glossed over and I wish we learned more about Lucy “the witch of Pine Lake” and her earlier days. I thought the author did a good job balancing the heavy/sad eve ...more
This was such a touching story...I loved the way you brought all the "loose ends" together. It gave so much insight to so many different topics...homelessness, drug abuse, foster children, unwed mothers and the struggles of our elderly. I loved the spirit and his part in the story.
Ms Payne did an excellent job of covering a lot of concerning topics, just needed a few stray dogs & cats to cover all the bases! Lol
I hope she continues to entertain us with m ...more
This story was so very sad to me that at times I had to stop reading for the day. Perhaps it was so heartbreaking because I have young children myself but the narration had me imagining the horror of losing a child and it was tough at time to read through. At the same time it was a bit spooky, and I don't really enjoy being frightened but was mesmerized all the same by the supernatural of Lucy and her home. Overall the characters were nicely developed and likeable, even if Jess was a l ...more
This is a beautiful story of great loss yet finding new chances at love. All the characters are bound by a dead child, but the dead child leads them to live again and letting go of the past. I am not a big fan of psychic skills because, to an extent, it allows the author to relocate the main characters in a small, peaceful town as though drawn there by a psychic/witch and a dead child. I struggle to believe the course of events because of this. Other ...more
Jess, Star, and Ben are Lucy’s “loose ends.” Each character has experienced pain and loss. It didn’t take me long to figure out how they were connected and what role each played.
The writing and storytelling kept me engaged despite the creepy factor and the obvious plot twists.
There were a few inconsistencies that better editing might have caught, but overall this was a quick, mostly enjoyable read.