It is 1914 and the world has been on the brink of war so many times, many New Yorkers treat the subject with only passing interest. Eliza Ferriday is thrilled to be traveling to St. Petersburg with Sofya Streshnayva, a cousin of the Romanovs. 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 emigres 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.
MARTHA HALL KELLY is the New York Times bestselling author of Lilac Girls. She lives in Connecticut, where she spends her days filling legal pads with stories and reading WWII books.
"A charming and vividly rendered historical novel . . . Based on true events, this prequel to Lilac Girls transports."--People "Inspired by true events, just like its predecessor, and just as well-researched, Lost Roses is a remarkable story and another testament to female strength. This sweeping epic will thrill and delight fans of Lilac Girls and readers of historical fiction alike."--PopSugar
"Epic . . . [Martha Hall] Kelly's gift is bringing to life and to light the untold stories of women and families far away from the war front yet deeply affected by the decisions of leaders and the efforts of fighters. Fans of historical fiction . . . and viewers of period dramas will want to clear their calendars when Lost Roses comes out."--Booklist (starred review)
"Kelly memorably portrays three indomitable women who triumph over hardships and successfully brings a complex and turbulent time in history to life."--Publishers Weekly
"The writing is rich and vivid with detail about the period. . . . A nuanced tale that speaks to the strength of women."--Kirkus Reviews
"In an era crumbling under the weight of war, hatred, and devastation, the bonds of women not only endure but offer sustenance and hope in Martha Hall Kelly's stunning depiction of the lives of Eliza Ferriday and the women she fought to save. Lost Roses is not only a brilliant historical tale, but a love song to all the ways our friendships carry us through the worst of times."--Lisa Wingate, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Before We Were Yours
Praise for Lilac Girls "Inspired by actual events and real people, Martha Hall Kelly has woven together the stories of three women during World War II that reveal the bravery, cowardice, and cruelty of those days. This is a part of history--women's history--that should never be forgotten." --Lisa See, New York Times bestselling author of Snow Flower and the Secret Fan "This is the kind of book I wish I had the courage to write--a profound, unsettling, and thoroughly captivating look at sisterhood through the dark lens of the Holocaust. Lilac Girls will haunt you." --Jamie Ford, New York Times bestselling author of Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet "A story of extraordinary moral power that moves effortlessly across physical and ethical battlegrounds, across the trajectory of a doomed wartime romance, across the territory of the soul . . . I can't remember the last time I read a novel that moved me so deeply." --Beatriz Williams, New York Times bestselling author of A Hundred Summers "Harrowing . . . Lilac illuminates." -- People "A compelling, page-turning narrative . . . Lilac Girls falls squarely into the groundbreaking category of fiction that re-examines history from a fresh, female point of view." --Fort Worth Star-Telegram "Brilliant . . . a powerful story for readers everywhere . . . a firsthand glimpse into one of history's most frightening memories. " -- San Francisco Book Review "Extremely moving and memorable . . . should appeal strongly to historical fiction readers and to book clubs that adored Kristin Hannah's The Nightingale and Anthony Doerr's All the Light We Cannot See ." -- Library Journal (starred review)
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.
Chapter 1 Eliza 1914 It was a spring party like any other held in Southampton, with the usual games. Croquet. Badminton. Mild social cruelty. It took place at Mother''s house on Gin Lane, a sprawling white clapboard place surrounded by a swoop of tawny lawn, which eased down to meet the ocean. The Queen Anne cottage, known to most as Mitchell Cottage after Father''s people, stood with her sisters lined up along the treeless South Fork of Long Island, New York, like passengers on a ship deck facing out to sea. If I paid more attention that day, maybe I could have predicted which of the boys who laughed over croquet wickets would soon die in the forests of Argonne or which women would exchange their ivory silk dresses for black crape. I wouldn''t have pointed to myself. It was late May and too unseasonably cool near the ocean for a fete of any kind, but Mother insisted on sending our Russian friends, the Streshnayvas, off in style. I stood in the cool, wide living room at the back of the house. Like a steamship wheelhouse it provided the perfect view of the backyard through the picture window, the glass hazed with salt from the sea. It gave the scene a blurry look as guests drifted down the lawn to the dunes. I felt two arms wrap around my waist and turned to find my eleven-
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