Saturday 1 September 2012

The Ruins of Lace by Iris Anthony - Book Review

Title: The Ruins of Lace
Author: Iris Anthony
Publisher: Sourcebooks Landmark
Publication Date: 1st October 2012
Pages: 328
Format: E-Book - PDF
Genre: Historical Fiction
Source: ARC via NetGalley

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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 alike 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 now demands the impossible. 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.

The most lucrative contraband in Europe, with its intricate patterns and ephemeral hope, threatens to cost them everything. Lace may be the deliverance for which they all pray...or it may bring the ruin and imprisonment they all fear.
(Goodreads Synopsis)

This is an intriguing and captivating tale, showing the effect forbidden lace has on the lives of a variety of characters from the makers of the lace to the buyers, and everyone in between. Some characters never meet while others cross paths as the story progresses, weaving a web as intricate as the lace itself.

I loved the multiple narratives as they gave the reader a chance to experience the full story, from the moment the lace was made to its final destination. The chapters, and the story overall, were nicely paced and my interest was held all the way through the book.

I found the prose to be simple yet descriptive and easy to read, meaning I could really fly through the story. There was also a reasonable sense of period established; although, I might have liked a little more historical detail at certain points.

All in all, a great piece of historical fiction and one I can certainly recommend to other fans of the genre.

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