Thursday, March 17, 2016

Book Review // Lost Lake House by Elisabeth Grace Foley

(Gorgeous cover, yes?)
First for the official story summary:

"The Twelve Dancing Princesses meets the heady glamor and danger of the Jazz Age...

"All Dorothy Perkins wants is to have a good time. She’s wild about dancing, and can’t understand or accept her father’s strictness in forbidding it. Night after night she sneaks out to the Lost Lake House, a glamorous island nightclub rumored to be the front for more than just music and dancing…in spite of an increasingly uneasy feeling that she may be getting into something more than she can handle.

"Marshall Kendrick knows the truth behind the Lost Lake House—and bitterly hates his job there. But fear and obligation have him trapped. When a twist of circumstances throws Dorothy and Marshall together one night, it may offer them both a chance at escaping the tangled web of fear and deceit each has woven…if only they are brave enough to take it."

This is actually my first book from Elisabeth Grace Foley and I already can't wait to start in on my next. Intriguing, glamorous, and fascinating, I was almost immediately caught in the whirl of the story and then promptly couldn't put it down.

As a note, I think Foley did a great job handling various themes of the story (i.e. obedience and disobedience, courage and cowardice, etc.) from a thoroughly Christian perspective yet without being 'preachy'. Altogether quite beautifully done....

Avoiding spoilers, I won't go into a ton of details, but I will say that the blossoming friendship between Two Certain People was one of my favorite things ever -- and I thought, too, slightly reminiscent (in setting, with the pines and the lake and the car, etc.) of Barney and Valancy's story in Montgomery's Blue Castle. In short, it's perfect, realistic, and absolutely darling.

I also found quite a few new favorite lines, so here are just a handful for a teaser taste:

“A breeze blew in through the open window, brushing the light curtains gently against her bare arms. It seemed to carry the spirit of gypsy adventure on its wings—”

"Dorothy set her mother’s dainty dimpled chin in an expression that belonged to her father. “All right,” she said, “I’ll be there.”

"There was a streak of something hard and real and true about him—he had experienced the reality of life in a way that flirting, thoughtless crowd she had followed on the ferry and in the ballrooms never had. Perhaps that was why it was no difficulty to talk to him, even though they were strangers; he knew how to speak to the point and about things that mattered."

"For the third time that night, Dorothy felt the stinging of tears in her eyes. She had the sudden impulsive feeling that she would have liked to hug him—but only if he had been a few years younger than she was, for as they were it wouldn’t do."

“If he says he will, he will,” said Dorothy. “That’s one good thing about him: he’s as straight as a line. He always keeps his word.”

~     ~     ~

So yes, evocative and engaging, I was riveted from beginning to end, thoroughly enjoyed it, and am now most happy to highly recommend it! :)

Tell me! Have you read or are you planning to read Lost Lake House?

(I received a free ebook of this story in exchange for my honest review.)


  1. I'm reading it right now! Just finished the first chapter/section this afternoon, between chores :-) It's reeeeally making me want to read some Fitzgerald and watch this Alan Ladd version of The Great Gatsby that is perched on my TV enticing me...

    1. Hamlette,
      Yay! And yes, that's the identical affect it had on me, too... :) Have you seen the Ladd Gatsby yet?

    2. No, argh argh argh ::tries to gnaw her arm off:: I'm at my parents' house right now, and I only brought 1 Alan Ladd movie with me ("And Now Tomorrow," which I'm going to review in April). (But my parents have both "Shane" and "Whispering Smith," so I can get Ladd fixes when necessary.) But most of my evenings are devoted to story revisions, sigh. From what the DVD case says, though, this Gatsby is kind of skewed noir, which could be really cool.

      I love the dogwood background, btw! They're blooming here in NC right now and I love them.

    3. Hamlette,
      Hee. I thought that might be the scenario... ;D About And Now Tomorrow, my sisters currently LOVE it! At least, sister #3 says the book is better (translated, meaning she's pretty entirely crazy about the book, so says it's hardly fair to compare). I haven't read or seen it, but between the three of you I'm thinking I'm going to need to eventually.

      And wow, that's fascinating about the Gatsby adaptation. I'm really looking forward to your review.

      (And thank you! So happy you like the dogwoods... I'm getting ready for my Yellowstone ensemble again, but I thought I'd leave this up for the duration of March. ;))

    4. WELL! Your sisters are the first people I know who've seen And Now Tomorrow! I haven't read the book yet, but it was the first Alan Ladd movie I ever saw, about 20 years ago, and I spent forever wishing for it to come to DVD so I could see it again because the screenplay was written by my beloved Raymond Chandler. As soon as I started falling in love with Alan Ladd, I checked through his filmography, discovered HE was the guy from And Now Tomorrow, and so I promptly started searching around for it. I bought it on greymarket DVD, and then at the beginning of March, it was released as one of those "vault classics" sorts of movies on Amazon, so I immediately bought a legit copy too because -- it's such a nice movie. And has some snappy one-liners too, thanks to Chandler. I am hoping to watch it with Mom tomorrow night to take a break from slogging.

      And yes, I hope you watch it yourself some time! It's a nice, feelsy drama. We all need those now and then.

  2. Ohh, this sounds delightful. This is definitely on my TBR list! The snippet about the hug was especially sweet. :)

    1. Natalie,
      Good!! And YES. That bit about the hug is pretty darling... :)

  3. Excellent review, Heidi! I never heard of this book before, but it sounds good, and I enjoyed the snippets you included.

    Oh, and when you mentioned the Blue Castle you reminded me that that was another book I wanted to read! Dear me, the list is endless!

    1. Miss March,
      Thank you and I'm so glad you enjoyed it! Yes, you MUST read Blue Castle as soon as ever you possibly can. (*grins* Consider yourself under orders from me. ;D)

  4. Thank you so much, Heidi, for helping out with this book launch! I'm so glad you enjoyed Lost Lake House. I must admit, it's quite a thrill seeing passages from my own book quoted in a blog post! :)

    1. Elisabeth,
      You're so welcome... it was a pleasure! And yes, I enjoyed it very much indeed! ;)

  5. Great review, Heidi! It sounds a little scary - ? I mean, all the sneaking out to go dancing with people she doesn't know, in a place she's never been? Just my two sense though . . . :)

    1. Rosie,
      Thank you! Well (avoiding spoilers here ;)), but Dorothy was going with a group of "friends," so she did know some people. Also, she's fairly naive and her problems originally stem from not being fully loved by her father and then her own strong root of disobedience. But she's not designing or manipulative, so it's not super scary or anything in that regard. None of the plot is really arbitrary, though -- it all very much has to do with historical accuracy (i.e. that kind of stuff really happened) and I very much appreciated how Foley never condones Dorothy's decisions and disobedience. In fact, that's the whole point... as she's bringing her to a realization of her own sin and foolishness. :)

      I hope that made some sense! ;P


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