Monday, July 18, 2016

The Secret Language of Stones by M.J. Rose (The Daughters of La Lune #2)

The Secret Language of Stones
by M.J. Rose

My rating: 5 stars

Series: The Daughters of La Lune - Book 2
Publisher: Atria Books (July 19, 2016)
Publication Date: July 19, 2016
ISBN-10: 1476778094
ISBN-13: 978-1476778099
Genre: Gothic Romance
Print Length: 320 pages
Available from: Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Indiebound | Amazon

As World War I rages and the Romanov dynasty reaches its sudden, brutal end, a young jewelry maker discovers love, passion, and her own healing powers in this rich and romantic ghost story, the perfect follow-up to M.J. Rose’s “brilliantly crafted” (Providence Journal) novel The Witch of Painted Sorrows.

Nestled within Paris’s historic Palais Royal is a jewelry store unlike any other. La Fantasie Russie is owned by Pavel Orloff, protégé to the famous Faberge, and is known by the city’s fashion elite as the place to find the rarest of gemstones and the most unique designs. But war has transformed Paris from a city of style and romance to a place of fear and mourning. In the summer of 1918, places where lovers used to walk, widows now wander alone.

So it is from La Fantasie Russie’s workshop that young, ambitious Opaline Duplessi now spends her time making trench watches for soldiers at the front, as well as mourning jewelry for the mothers, wives, and lovers of those who have fallen. People say that Opaline’s creations are magical. But magic is a word Opaline would rather not use. The concept is too closely associated with her mother Sandrine, who practices the dark arts passed down from their ancestor La Lune, one of sixteenth century Paris’s most famous courtesans.

But Opaline does have a rare gift even she can’t deny, a form of lithomancy that allows her to translate the energy emanating from stones. Certain gemstones, combined with a personal item, such as a lock of hair, enable her to receive messages from beyond the grave. In her mind, she is no mystic, but merely a messenger, giving voice to soldiers who died before they were able to properly express themselves to loved ones. Until one day, one of these fallen soldiers communicates a message—directly to her.

So begins a dangerous journey that will take Opaline into the darkest corners of wartime Paris and across the English Channel, where the exiled Romanov dowager empress is waiting to discover the fate of her family.

The Secret Language of Stones by M.J. Rose
(The Daughters of La Lune #2)

The Secret Language of Stones: A Novel (The Daughters of La Lune, #2)With an enchanting and almost dreamlike style, M.J. Rose delves deep into the hearts and lives of a gifted group of women, this time, focusing on Opaline with her gifts of working magic into precious stones and metals, as a connection for the living to the dead. The Secret Language of Stones is a journey that will enrapture readers, as it did for me.

The time is during the horrors of World War I, the place Europe, Paris mostly, when dabbling in the occult was in high, if not illegal fashion. Opaline’s gift was meant to atone for her own mistakes, to infuse stones with a part of the young soldiers killed in battle to bring comfort to the women they left behind to grieve. Her talismans were sought after and precious to the recipients.

Then one soldier passed through the veil of death to communicate with Opaline and their mystical love affair begins. Is Opaline going insane as many of her ancestors had or is she finally listening to her own heart. From the war ravaged Paris to the horrendous fall of the Romanov Dynasty, Opaline will play her own special part in one of history’s darkest times.

Face the love, loss, and intrigue of war while feeling as if you have been transported back in time with the devastatingly detailed scenes of the era. Dark and heavy with emotional turmoil, Opaline’s journey and the plight of the world will remain deep within your soul. M.J. Rose writes from the souls of the characters she has created as each one becomes a breathing entity necessary to every page of this riveting and romantic read as you desperately need to discover what happens to a love between to realms.

I received an ARC edition from Atria Books in exchange for my honest review.

Be sure to join in the Release Day Tour and Giveaway
July 19, 2016 at Tome Tender


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