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A Lily in the Light

3.87  ·  Rating details ·  6,797 ratings  ·  525 reviews
A harrowing debut novel of a tragic disappearance and one sister’s journey through the trauma that has shaped her life.

For eleven-year-old Esme, ballet is everything—until her four-year-old sister, Lily, vanishes without a trace and nothing is certain anymore. People Esme has known her whole life suddenly become suspects, each new one hitting closer to home than the last.

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Published April 1st 2019 by Brilliance Audio
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Carol Katarsky We really don't know anything about the kidnapping, but my take was no.

Reading between the lines, he was out of town and his sister was watching his …more
We really don't know anything about the kidnapping, but my take was no.

Reading between the lines, he was out of town and his sister was watching his place. So, logically, if Lily left to explore because she was mad at her siblings, Gloria saw her in the hallway or in the street and grabbed her before heading home.

It's possible he found out after the fact, but seems unlikely to me. They said he didn't often leave the apartment and she had Lily in a padlocked room only she could access. It doesn't sound like he even lived that much longer after Lily was taken. (less)

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Average rating 3.87  · 
Rating details
 ·  6,797 ratings  ·  525 reviews

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Apr 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
Beautifully told, elegantly executed... this was an emotional story about the aftermath of tragedy.

Kristin Feild’s debut was evocative and heart wrenching. A unique take on the missing child trope. This is not a dark twisted thriller with wild secrets, it is a tender story Full of heart and hope. This book really captures the essence of Esme, and how her sister Lily’s disappearance impacted her life.

Esme is 11 years old, she loves ballet and her biggest concern in life is getting on point. Sh
Lindsey Gandhi
I was so excited to read this book when I saw it. The idea of it being a mystery yet really focusing on how a family moves past unthinkable grief just intrigued me. I liked this book but I didn't love it like I thought I would.
Here are the positives - the storyline is excellent. Reading this you honestly feel like this scenario could have happened to anyone, even you. And that's humbling and scary. The characters are extremely relatable (whether you like them or their decisions or not). I feel
PinkAmy loves books, cats and naps

Eleven-year-old aspiring ballerina Esme’s life changes the day her little sister Lily disappears. Eight years later, older sister Madeline calls Esme in Paris with startling news.

Either I have terrible luck choosing Amazon Prime Read First Books, or those books aren’t very good. I enjoy books about child abductions and stories about ballerinas, so I was excited to start reading A LILY IN THE LIGHT. Kristin Fields came up with a great premise, but the execution lacked both tension and em
Apr 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is an amazing debut novel - some people are just born storytellers and I think Kristin Fields is one of those. The story was told from the perspective of Esme whose sister Lily disappeared when she was 4 and Esme was 11. The book charted the progress of the family from the happiness before and the imploding family dynamics after Lily vanished. It was beautifully written and with such empathy. Her mother Cerise disappeared into herself, she never gave up but she had no room for her family to ...more
This well told debut takes a look into a family caught in a maelstrom of sorrow,grief and recrimination when a four year old goes missing. Told from the perspective of then eleven year old Esme, overwhelmed with sadness not just for her missing sister but for the family that she sees disintegrating before her eyes.
Esme is able to escape to her ballet classes where she can temporarily put aside her grief and the new toxicity of her family. Given a chance to live with her ballet instructor, she
Christina McDonald
A sad story about a girl whose sister goes missing. Took me a little while to get into but the characters are likeable enough. Very little tension, which deterred me a little, but the writing was eloquent.
Barbara Davis
Aug 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
“What happens when a four-year-old vanishes without a trace, when a family is unshaped and long held dreams begin to unspool—when you don’t even know what to hope for anymore? These are the questions Kristin Fields deftly explores in her beautifully written debut, A Lily in the Light. Honest, heartfelt, and at times wrenching, Fields’ novel exposes every heartache and raw nerve of her compellingly flawed characters, touching on the many ways we punish ourselves and those we love when life leaves ...more
Deb Poole
Mar 07, 2019 rated it liked it
I'm obsessed with books with a ballet backdrop. So when I saw this for free on Kindle first reads, I was very excited to read it.

Interesting story; the youngest child of a NYC family disappears, leaving them all somewhat adrift. The book concentrates on one character, middle child Esme, who is an aspiring ballerina, age 11.
The story is mainly about how the disappearance of Lily, their 4 year old sister/daughter, affects their family in various debilitating ways.

The book started off well, but
Apr 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
11 year old Esme lives and breathes ballet. One night, her 4 year old sister Lily disappears without a trace and life as she knows it is altered forever. Her family starts to fall apart, everyone is a suspect, and Lily throws herself into ballet as a way of forgetting. She is given the chance to escape when she receives an invitation to join an elite ballet company across the country. Fast forward 8 years later and Esme is a rising ballerina and dancing in Paris. She gets a call from her older s ...more
Apr 13, 2019 rated it liked it
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Happy Reading, friends!


We meet a ballet prodigy with her whole life ahead of her. When her little sister goes missing, her life, along with her family is thrown into a tailspin.


One thing I really enjoy about A Lily in the Light is this imperfect family. Well, let me be clear. I don’t particularly like this family, but I appreciate Kr
Lynda Kelly
Mar 05, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My Kindle First choice for's the only choice this particular month for me whereas sometimes I could pick 2 or 3......and then I opt for the one with most pages as a rule. However, none really jumped out at me this time, even this one, but this is the closest to my type of story. It's very well written but probably a little too flowery and deep for my liking. I almost gave up around a quarter of the way in but was pleased I persevered as it got better as it went along. Passages like " ...more
May 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A child goes missing and you have no idea what happened or where she is. How do you react. As a mother can you get over that kind of loss. Not knowing if your child is being cared for or treated bad.

Kristin Fields did a wonderful job with this book. It has great characters, great plot and the story is one that will keep you wanting to know what happens next. From the beginning to the very last word you will want this child to come home. For this family to be able to heal. Each child has their o
Mar 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

My First Reads choice for March, an easy choice- the synopsis spoke of an interesting, emotional story about a missing four year old and the destruction of a family. The first half of the book is told from the point of view of Lily's eleven year old sister- an aspiring ballet dancer.

Esme, eight years later is in Paris, when Madeline calls her with news of a girl found locked in a basement. I won't put any spoilers in my review, you need to read it yourself. But the continuing havoc on Esme a
Mar 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
Really good story with very relatable characters. Didn't want to stop reading ...more
Boring book, a struggle to get through, I thought it'd be a mystery/thriller but it wasn't.. I think it was about ~dealing with the aftereffect of trauma and loss~ ~broken families~ and ... ballet? I dunno, but it was boring. Lately, all of Amazon's Kindle First reads taste like dry, crumbly red delicious apples you get for free at a boring conference. ...more
Linda Zagon
Mar 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Linda's Book Obsession Reviews "A Lily in the Light" by Kristin Fields, Lake Union Publishing, April 1, 2019

Kristin Fields, Author of "A Lily in the Light" writes an intense, intriguing, suspenseful family drama.  The Genres for this Novel are Fiction, Mystery, and Suspense. This is also a coming of age novel. The timeline for this story starts in Queens, New York, in 1997, and goes to the past and future when it pertains to the characters or events in the story. The author describes her charact
Booksandchinooks (Laurie)
Apr 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
Thank you to Kathleen Carter Communications and Lake Union for a free copy of this book for review. This was a beautifully written book by a debut author. Much of the book is told through Esme who is 11 years old at the beginning of the story. Esme lives for ballet. Her mother encourages her and takes her for lessons hoping Esme can become famous. Tragedy strikes the family when four year old Lily vanishes. As the days become weeks there is no sign of Lily. The family is falling apart. Esme’s mo ...more
Mar 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I chose this book as my March Kindle First Reads book and it did not disappoint. I initially chose it because it sounded like a good mystery but I was pretty surprised by how it was more about what happens in the wake of a horrific family event and the grief that follows the characters around, years afterwards. It was very moving to read about the day to day struggles that the characters had as a result of this incident and I truly cannot imagine going through that myself. The way that Kristin w ...more
Melissa Loucks
Mar 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was my Amazon First read for March and I absolutely loved it. I was not sure about it when I read the description because I am more into crime novels. This is a really cute book and I highly enjoyed it. It is a story of a missing little girl and how her sister uses dance to over come her grief.
Mar 03, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Will Please Readers

I think this book will please readers who are drawn to it. It has all of the elements of a good story. For me, I can’t put my finger on it, but it was missing that something that would make it a special standout novel. Maybe it was too sweet and tied up so nicely and that took away some of its authenticity? I’m not sure. It was a good book, certainly. I just wanted more once I’d finished.
Can't really recommend...

Hmm. I'm pretty torn over this one, but in the end I can't recommend it. It's way too sad and I wish I hadn't read it. On the other hand, it's very well written, it's a compelling story, and was hard to put down. Put the all encompassing sadness was too much for me.
Christine Lowe
Mar 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A Limit on the Light

This story allowed me into a world of what is and what could be. The writing evoked feelings of loss and wonder that the author could capture so much of what the dance world is like from the inside. The characters are lovingly crafted into complete people with feelings that are universal. A great debut for a talented young writer
Rebecca Lloyd
Mar 09, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was an enjoyable read. It kept me going as the desire to know what happened intensified as well as wondering if Esme would make it.
Jeanne Fleck
Mar 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book was amazing. I thought the writing was beautiful and exceptionally done. The trauma at the beginning of the story wove itself into the fabric of so many lives and emerged into a feeling of hope, also for so many. Aside from the obvious theme of trauma it enlightened the reader as to the world of ballet and the sacrifices of the dancers. This was a wonderful read.
Rochelle Weinstein
Mar 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A Lily in the Light captures family in the throes of chaos. A journey through guilt and suffering, the world of ballet, culminating in the miracles achieved through both. Fields is an emerging literary talent and her debut, deftly written, uncovers the heart of family and forgiveness.
Apr 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was thoroughly impressed with this powerful debut. it deals with the impact of a missing child on the family members left behind. Mainly told from the point of view of her elder sister Esme, the daughter who distances herself from the family and throwing herself into dance. Once I started I couldn't put this down, I found it compelling, and the emotions felt very real. ...more
Mar 09, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019
A sequel could finish this story

Enjoyed the weave of family relationships with the tough yet beautiful world of ballet.
The protagonist was a very developed character, others a bit less so but it was HER story so that’s reasonable. I wanted to know more about Lily’s feelings at reunification but maybe when it’s herstory to tell—-
deborah thompson

Didn't like it, it was to slow. Dragged on on on on on so sad then happy took forever no
Therese Walsh
Aug 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: women-s-fiction
A Lily in the Light is a tender, heart-wrenching novel that considers the long-ranging effects of shattering loss upon a young dancer and her family. A haunting and beautifully rendered tale of survival and the careful tending to a wild and desperately needed hope. Highly recommended.
Shannon Hollinger
I feel bad for not rating this higher, but for a story with such an emotional plotline, it really didn't raise my emotions. It was a good idea and had good bones, but I feel like the author really missed out on the chance to make this the tear-jerker it could have been. 3/5 ⭐ ...more
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Kristin Fields grew up in Queens, which she likes to think of as a small town next to a big city. Kristin studied writing at Hofstra University, where she was awarded the Eugene Schneider Award for Short Fiction. After college, Kristin found herself working on a historic farm, as a high school English teacher, designing museum education programs, and is currently leading an initiative to bring gar ...more

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