Lost Roses (Lilac Girls, #2 Prequel)by Published 09 Apr 2019
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The runaway bestseller Lilac Girls introduced the real-life heroine Caroline Ferriday. This sweeping new novel, set a generation earlier and also inspired by true events, features Caroline's mother, Eliza, and follows three equally indomitable women from St. Petersburg to Paris under the shadow of World War I.
It is 1914 and the world has been on the brink of war so many times, many New Yorker's treat the subject with only passing interest. Eliza Ferriday is thrilled to be traveling to St. Petersburg with Sofya Streshnayva, a cousin of the Romanov's. The two met years ago one summer in Paris and became close confidantes. Now Eliza embarks on the trip of a lifetime, home with Sofya to see the splendors of Russia. But when Austria declares war on Serbia and Russia's Imperial dynasty begins to fall, Eliza escapes back to America, while Sofya and her family flee to their country estate. In need of domestic help, they hire the local fortuneteller's daughter, Varinka, unknowingly bringing intense danger into their household. On the other side of the Atlantic, Eliza is doing her part to help the White Russian families find safety as they escape the revolution. But when Sofya's letters suddenly stop coming she fears the worst for her best friend.
From the turbulent streets of St. Petersburg to the avenues of Paris and the society of fallen Russian emigre's who live there, the lives of Eliza, Sofya, and Varinka will intersect in profound ways, taking readers on a breathtaking ride through a momentous time in history.
"Lost Roses (Lilac Girls, #2 Prequel)" Reviews
The author of the epic Lilac Girls returns with a tale set during World War I, cleverly braiding the tales of Eliza Ferriday, a cousin of the Romaonovs in Russia, and the daughter of a fortune teller, who brings with her unknown danger.
The moment you realize that the second book is just as intelligent, respectful and endearing as the first... I have waited for a new book from Martha Hall Kelly and am so honored that I was able to read this one early, I loved it. (And my obsession with books about Russia was fed!) Can't wait for the next one and will plan a trip to the Ferriday home as soon as I can get there. These are women that should be celebrated.
This fantastic new book is a prequel to The Lilac Girls. It features Caroline's mother, Eliza during the time period of WWI and the Russian revolution. As with the Lilac Girls, this book features strong women who are working and sacrificing to make the world a better place during a difficult time in world history. (Note - you don't need to read The Lilac Girls before you read Lost Roses. However, Lilac Girls is such a fantastic book that you need to make sure that you read it soon.)
Eliza is a happily married very wealthy woman who lives with her husband Henry and her daughter in Caroline in New York. She loves to travel and as the book begins is planning a trip to St. Petersburg to accompany her best friend Sofya home from her visit to the US. The year is 1914 and when WWI escalates and the Romanov empire in Russia is beginning to collapse, Eliza returns safely home. Sofya and her family think that they will remain safe in Russia because they are cousins of the Romanov's but the uprising of the poor in Russia also includes the end of the rich upper class - no matter who they are. When Eiza quits getting mail from Sofya, she fears the worst for her friend.
These two women live very rich and pampered lives but still have empathy for what is going on in the world. Both of them are put into difficult situations and change their lives to work for those who have less than they do. At a time in history that is very difficult, they both show their strength in the decisions they make and the battles they fight. I loved and admired both of these strong women and highly recommend this novel.
Thanks to net galley for a copy of this book to read and review. All opinions are my own.
Won this ARC in a GoodReads Giveaway. Lost Roses is a prequel to the excellent Lilac Girls and focuses on Caroline's mother Eliza Ferriday and her work in assisting White Russian Emigres as well as a another pair of storylines about her good friend Sofya who gets caught up in the revolution and a peasant girl Varinka who is working for Sofya's family just prior to it. If you loved Lilac Girls (and I did) then you will love probably love Lost Roses as much as I did.
I am fascinated by the the legacy of strong principled women in Caroline Ferriday's family tree and I am excited to learn more about them all. The author is evidently working on another female ancestor who was an abolitionist and activist just prior to and during the Civil War so this is an amazing family and I am really excited to read the next book!
This novel is a prequel to The Lilac Girls and features the real life heroine Caroline Ferriday. The world is in turmoil and edging toward World War One. We learn about Caroline's mother, Eliza and two other women that are thrown into the intense situations they faced in 1914. Eliza is the connection between the two novels - The Lilac Girls and Lost Roses , but this one could easily be read as stand-alone.
The story follows the lives of three women. Eliza who is a socialite and lives in Manhattan. Her friend Sofya Streshnayva, is a cousin of the Romanov's, the reigning dynasty in Russia. While visiting her in St. Petersburg, Eliza becomes aware that war is imminent and fears for her friend Sofya, who seems unaware of the danger that could come. When war is declared, Eliza heads back home to America.
Varinka Kozlov is a Russian girl, who the Romanov family hire to help in their household. She is the daughter of a well-known fortune-teller and her situation is dire. I tried to imagine the helplessness that she felt when she had to make some dangerous decisions. Varinka and her mom are under the thumb of some dangerous men that are involved in the local uprisings. Lets just say, she has a lot going on. and makes some decisions that will impact all of these women. A story of three strong, determined women and their quest for survival.
While this story is not as fast-paced as Lilac Girls , the characters are compelling and the author's research of the period was evident. There is a lot that happens go in this novel and it took some concentration to keep it all straight. There are some "hold your breath" moments towards the end, and I feared for what was to come. I was still invested to find out how each of their stories would play out.
Review posted to my blog 1/25/19
Thanks to the publisher and blog tour host for the opportunity to read/review.
Publishes on April 9,2019