Manchester District Library Book Club discussion

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The Lace Reader

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message 1: by Patty (new)

Patty | 98 comments Mod
I just finished this latest book for our January 22 book discussion at the library. I noticed in the paperback edition and on the web site that there will be a sequel to this book coming out in '09.
My topic for discussion is: would you want to read the sequel? and why or why not?


message 2: by Julia (new)

Julia (juliastrimer) | 92 comments Patty, I've been reading other books--had read THE LACE READER in June and probably would have given it 3 stars then, but I want to go back over it before the discussion to do my "sticky note" thing. I can't even think how they'd DO a sequel, based on the ending. Regardless of how many stars I give it, the book felt like a stand-alone.


message 3: by Shea (new)

Shea | 167 comments Mod
I finished "The Lace Reader" over the weekend and I would read a sequel. I really enjoyed this novel and I felt like Towner's journey was not complete at the end of it. I would like to know how her relationship with Rafferty progresses and if she decides to use her talents to read lace or not. I would also like to know what happens to Angela and Linda. I would like to see Eva's prediction of Towner having a daughter come to fruition...did she mean Rafferty's daughter or does Towner become a mother figure to Linda.


message 4: by Doris (new)

Doris I don't know if this is where you post replies, but here goes.
I didn't really care for The Lace Reader. Wouldn't read a sequel if written. I didn't think the author made herself clear, and am still wondering how lace reading is done or if it is really relevent to anything.
Guess I just didn't get it. Doris Mahony


message 5: by Julia (new)

Julia (juliastrimer) | 92 comments I'd read this book in June and then read it again just now for our book club. Maybe it's because I've read some great ones between now and then, because I might have given it 3 stars in June, but now I find the writing style so annoying that I've reduced it to 2, so no, I wouldn't want to read a sequel.

I think the ending disappointed me so much that it affected my view of the entire book. I just can't stand "pull the rabbit out of the hat" endings--and for Lyndley to SUDDENLY not be real, to have been a twin that died at birth, for Towner to be EMMA'S daughter instead of May's--c'mon. Mysteries are supposed to have twists, but this "jumped the shark", to use TV terminology.

The end also blew Towner's character to shreds for me. I had liked her, pitied her, cheered for her--and then she's Cal's DAUGHTER??? SHE'S the one he raped? It's just totally impossible based on how the story developed.

When I saw the film THE SIXTH SENSE, I was blown away with that type of ending, since I saw it again and every single encounter was logical once you knew he was dead. But in this one, all of Towner's memories of playing with Lyndley and Beezer and the town kids were hallucinations??!!! It's a cop out; Towner deserved better.

I hated Cal, disliked Jack, and lost patience with Rafferty. The story just kept dragging on and on--it could have been 2/3 the length, especially minus all the witch parts, which were totally unnecessary. Ann was one of the few solid characters, but not because she was a witch--just because she was one of the only ones not totally deluded.

The best part of the book for me--maybe the reason I didn't just turn it in and give up this second time--is the idea of reading lace. It's totally unique--and part of my disappointment is that, except for the great quotes from the "Lace Reader's Book" at the start of chapters, the concept was never fully developed.

No wonder ENTERTAINMENT magazine voted this one of the five worst books of 2008. I don't usually take their opinion over more literary critics, but I agree with them on this one.


message 6: by Shea (new)

Shea | 167 comments Mod
It occurred to me the other day that maybe Towner was NOT in the boat with Jack when "Lindley jumped." I think Jack was out alone checking the traps. Towner is the girl who jumps off the cliff wearing her own nightgown and Jack saves her from drowning. What do you think?


message 7: by Patty (new)

Patty | 98 comments Mod
Hmmmmmm! Could Towner have lived? I don't have the book so I can't be sure, did Lindley die in the "dream"?
Good questions come from the fact that the ending doesn't answer all the questions and also because the ending is part imaginary. Any and all ideas are possible and there is no right or wrong answer. That makes for an interesting discussion.


message 8: by Shea (new)

Shea | 167 comments Mod
Just a little info for fun: The movie adaptation of this book is in production now according to IMDB.


message 9: by Patty (new)

Patty | 98 comments Mod
We talked about there being a sequel to the Lace Reader.....
I looked up the author and find, The Map of True Places
by Brunonia Barry.
Not a sequel but all the commentors give it a good star rating.


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