The million-copy bestseller Lilac Girls introduced the real-life heroine Caroline Ferriday. Now Lost Roses, 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.
“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, New York Times bestselling author of Before We Were Yours
It is 1914, and the world has been on the brink of war so often, 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: the church with the interior covered in jeweled mosaics, the Rembrandts at the tsar’s Winter Palace, the famous ballet.
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 fortune-teller’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 and aristocratic countryside estates to the avenues of Paris where a society of fallen Russian émigrés live to the mansions of Long Island, the lives of Eliza, Sofya, and Varinka will intersect in profound ways. In her newest powerful tale told through female-driven perspectives, Martha Hall Kelly celebrates the unbreakable bonds of women’s friendship, especially during the darkest days of history.
Eliza is visiting Sophya’s family in Russia. Then the imperial dyansty starts to crumble. Eliza makes it home but Sophya and her family are trapped. They make it to their country estate. This does not offer the safety they expect.
Sofya’s life during the revolution was almost too dreadful to take. I don’t want to give anything away…so you must read this to find out. Then there is Varinka. She has her own calamity. And you don’t realize how deep her trauma is until the end of the book. She is a tragedy walking. And Eliza. She is the savior in this story. She and Sofya are friends and Eliza is determined to find her.
Give me a book about the Russian revolution and I am riveted. This one did not disappoint. However, I did feel it is a little too long. It also has a good many characters to keep up with. However, each character has their own story. I just couldn’t help my heart breaking over what these people went through. No author can take you to the depths of your feelings like Martha Hall Kelly.