Lost Lake: A Novel

Lost Lake: A Novel

by Sarah Addison Allen

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A New York Times bestseller!

"Tender and enchanting" —Southern Seasons

"An endearing tale of surprising second chances." – Booklist (starred review)

The first time Eby Pim saw Lost Lake, it was on a picture postcard. Just an old photo and a few words on a small square of heavy stock, but when she saw it, she knew she was seeing her future.
That was half a life ago. Now Lost Lake is about to slip into Eby's past. Her husband, George, is long passed. Most of her demanding extended family are gone. All that's left is a once-charming collection of lakeside cabins succumbing to the Southern Georgia heat and damp, and an assortment of faithful misfits drawn back to Lost Lake year after year by their own unspoken dreams and desires. It's not quite enough to keep Eby from calling this her final summer at the lake, and relinquishing Lost Lake to a developer with cash in hand.
Until one last chance at family knocks on her door.
Lost Lake is where Kate Pheris spent her last best summer at the age of twelve, before she learned of loneliness and heartbreak and loss. Now she's all too familiar with those things, but she knows about hope, too, thanks to her resilient daughter, Devin, and her own willingness to start moving forward. Perhaps at Lost Lake her little girl can cling to her own childhood for just a little longer… and maybe Kate herself can rediscover something that slipped through her fingers so long ago.
One after another, people find their way to Lost Lake, looking for something that they weren't sure they needed in the first place: love, closure, a second chance, peace, a mystery solved, a heart mended. Can they find what they need before it's too late?
At once atmospheric and enchanting, Lost Lake shows Sarah Addison Allen at her finest, illuminating the secret longings and the everyday magic that wait to be discovered in the unlikeliest of places.
"Lost Lake is a love note to second chances, hopeful and entrancing, and I couldn't put it down." —Joshilyn Jackson

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781250130631
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Publication date: 05/30/2017
Pages: 352
Sales rank: 247,880
Product dimensions: 4.10(w) x 6.70(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

SARAH ADDISON ALLEN is the New York Times bestselling author of Garden Spells, The Sugar Queen, The Girl Who Chased the Moon, and The Peach Keeper. She was born and raised in Asheville, North Carolina.


Asheville, North Carolina

Place of Birth:

Asheville, North Carolina


B.A. in Literature, 1994

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Lost Lake 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 137 reviews.
dhaupt More than 1 year ago
Kate Pheris not only lost her husband but her sense of time because all of a sudden a year has passed since his death and she finds herself without knowing why or how on a road to a place she doesn’t want to travel to move in with her ultra controlling mother in law Cricket. So when karma comes calling in the form of a never seen postcard from a long lost aunt from a magical summer from Kate’s childhood she decides that she and her daughter Devin need this one last summer of fun and magic where Devin can regain her childhood and to where Kate’s childhood lives, Lost Lake Georgia. Devin knows her mom’s finally back from where she went when her dad died, she can’t loose her again, she doesn’t want to live with her grandmother, and when she and her mom finally arrive at Lost Lake it’s like they’ve come home, oh and there’s an Alligator too! Eby Pim’s decided to finally sell her beloved Lost Lake resort, that she and her husband George bought many years ago. Things are falling apart, guests aren’t returning and she’s finally ready to let go. Until a whirling dervish of a great great niece and her mother arrive and Eby feels something she hadn’t in a long time, hope. Sarah Addison Allen has taken me on some very magical journeys from all her past astounding entrancing adventures and the latest, Lost Lake is no different. She weaves her intricate, multi-faceted web of suspense, secrets, myths and realities. She acquaints us to her cast of cast-offs as she builds her mystical magical world and paints in all the spaces but never quite within the lines with the beautiful Technicolor of her narrative. Her characters are all a delight from her main protagonist Kate who’s charmingly innocent, to Devin who’s older and wiser than her years to Eby, the guests and the residents of town to her purely fantastical Alligator. I implore you to take a chance if you haven’t read Sarah, if you believe in magic she will speak to your inner child and open you up to possibilities that our adult psyches won’t allow. Sarah thank you once again, especially now for still believing in magic after all you’ve been through in your personal life and for sharing that magic with us.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Magical. If you are looking for love and laughs, family and friendships this is the perfect book.
The_Book_Goddess More than 1 year ago
I want to start this review by saying I have loved Sarah Addison Allen as an author since I read Garden Spells . It was so beautiful and different, that I knew I had to get my hands on every book she has written and I have. While waiting for this book to come out, I learned that the delay was due to the fact that the author was battling a very serious health problem and my heart absolutely ached for her. I was so happy to read in the acknowledgements section of this book that she has just reached two years with clear scans. My thoughts and prayers will continue to go out to this author. Now, for my review of this book...it was just as magical and all-consuming as her prior books. There is just something about Allen's writing that makes you want to climb into the book to spend time with her characters. I was so excited when I got this book, I had to read it in a single sitting. The book begins in the 1960's, which briefly introduces us to newlyweds, George and Eby, and their adventurous honeymoon in Paris. We then flash forward to the present day, where Eby's great-niece, Kate, is "waking up" after a year of being asleep. No, she wasn't in a coma, this is where the magic of Allen's writing comes into play. We learn about this very strange family, relative by relative, to learn about a certain family curse. Now is it a real curse, I don't get that feeling. But the author writes in a way that makes you realize it is always your choice to be happy and move forward after great loss. There is a wonderful line in the book that says something to the effect of "if you are too busy mourning what your empty cup, you will miss the opportunity to fill it again". I am paraphrasing, but I found that line extremely striking. The magic in this book is more subtle than in prior books, but I felt that it fit the story well. This is ultimately a book about finding your strength and moving forward with the support of friends and family and taking care of each other. I wish Lost Lake was a real place to go...it sounds like a magical place full of peace and healing. Sarah Addison Allen knocked it out of the park again for me and I cannot wait to see what she does next. If you have never read this author before, do yourself a favor and read all of her books. I received a copy of this title from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review
joydox More than 1 year ago
I love Sarah's books -- her writing, the way she explores relationships, the peak into Southern living, and that little bit of magic her readers have come to expect. If you're a fan, you won't be disappointed.
DudeRanchWoman More than 1 year ago
I am a huge fan of SAA's books and this one is no exception.  She has an amazing way of pulling you into a magical story with interesting, unique yet relateable characters.  I always feel uplifted and joyful when I've finished one of her books.  Here's to never giving up on your biggest, wildest most heart-felt dreams!!  Thank you again for the magic Sarah Addison Allen!!
hanro More than 1 year ago
I am so happy I read this book! I picked up this book with a sense of trepidation after reading the Peach Keeper which was good, a little dark; but I did not feel it was Sarah's strongest story -- there just seemed to be an element missing. BUT ... that SPARK IS BACK! It is again a contemporary fairy tale set in a small Southern town, this time in Georgia. It features some serious topics and situations written with a great sense of realism, but with a touch of whimsy. There is a quiet sense of adventure, colorful characters, and MAGIC. This story is a multi-character study. The past is itself a character. Everyone is in transition, whether they are aware of it or not. “Eby knew all too well that there was a fine line when it came to grief. If you ignore it, it goes away, but then it always comes back when you least expect it. If you let it stay, if you make a place for it in your life, it gets too comfortable and it never leaves. It was best to treat grief like a guest. You acknowledge it, you cater to it, then you send it on its way.” Allen has a unique writing and sense of timing; she has a beautifully lyrical sense of language with which she sends forth ideas and phrases that end up quietly wrapping themselves around you and become universal truths.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book takes you back to remember your childhood self (or maybe just my summers of dress up and make-believe). Great story but i expected nothing less from Allen. The book is stand alone but Im hoping Allen will revisit these characters in a future book.
lildirtydesigner More than 1 year ago
Do have regrets? If you can have a second chance would you take it? If you could change the path of your life, would you? Lost Lake by Sarah Addison Allen is a story about changing the path of your life. We meet Kate, a widow and mother who have been hiding out for the last year since her husband died. She allowed sorrow to swallow her up until one day she woke up to find her life being changed to a life she didn't want her daughter to have. On a whim her and Devin find a postcard from a great aunt who owns Lost Lake. Lost Lake was the last summer of her own childhood where she felt happy, loved and overall a child. She wanted Devin to have the same summer she did. Kate's journey is a special one because it is filled with a handful of characters that like all of Sarah Addison Allen books, you fall in love with. Ms. Allen has a special gift to give each character a special part of the story - even if it only a paragraph long. This is a lovely book that you would like to read when your own life has stopped and you have two paths to follow. I would really love to read a sequel to this to see how everyone turns out....though I know they all are doing well.
Twink More than 1 year ago
I love Sarah Addison Allen's storytelling. The Sugar Queen is a favourite of mine. Although, Addison Allen's newest release, Lost Lake, may just supplant it! Kate Pheris has just 'woken up' after a year. Her husband has passed away and she's going through the motions of living for her daughter Devin's sake. Her mother-in-law has been helping her for the past year, but that help has crossed over a line. She's now dictating the direction of Kate and Devin's lives. When Devin comes across an old postcard from Kate's Aunt Eby, Kate makes a snap decision to visit Eby at Lost Lake. Kate's happiest summer as a child was spent there. But, Kate and Devin's arrival may be too late. Eby has agreed to sell the small resort to a local developer. But perhaps Lost Lake does not want to be sold...... Lost Lake is filled with rich characters, all with their own back story, all searching for 'something. 'Each one held my interest, but I had a special fondness for Bulahdeen, a woman who has been coming to Lost Lake for thirty years. I must admit, Addison Allen's descriptions of Lost Lake had me wanting to visit, to sit on the dock, to stay in one of the quaint cabins, to get to know Eby and to be part of the circle of Lost Lake. Addison Allen weaves together wonderfully warm tales with quirky characters and then slips in a bit of magic when you're not looking. And once you notice the magic, you realize it's quite right that it's in the story. And then you begin to think 'what if'... Lost Lake had me hoping 'what if' could truly happen. Lost Lake was another enchanting read from Sarah Addison Allen. I had a quick listen to the audio version as well - I think Janet Metzger does an excellent job bring the characters and story to life.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A wonderful simple story with just the right amount of fantasy to be real and reality to be fantastic! Endings can be wonderful in the truest sense of the word.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Life is what you make it; Never give up the dream; Start anew books are my favorite. Losing a loved one in your life is devastating but once breaking out of the fog, Kate and her daughter take a chance and move on. Creating a new life is what so many people dream of. The trick is making the right choices for one and all. Uplifting and engaging and amazing, interesting characters make a difference.
Becca74 More than 1 year ago
I've always enjoyed Allen's books. I enjoy the her use of flashbacks and the unexplainable tendencies her characters have. The ending of this book is somewhat predictable but it is still enjoyable.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I liked reading this book and it remimded me of my fun camp days. Would Reccomend it for a easy entertaining read.
Caroles_Random_Life More than 1 year ago
Compelling story I received an advance reader edition of this book from St. Martin's Press and Net Galley for the purpose of providing an honest review. This book was a solid 4 star read. Sarah Addison Allen definitely knows how to tell a compelling story weaving the past, the present, and a little bit of magic. Grief plays a major role in this book but this is not a sad book. Instead, I found this book to be one of hope. The story starts with Kate waking up. Kate is not waking up from a night of sleep but from a year of extreme grief. She basically shut down when her husband was killed and has allowed her mother in law, Cricket to take over. The day that Kate is waking up is in fact also the day that she is scheduled to move into her mother in law's house. Kate's daughter, Devin, finds a postcard just before they are supposed to leave from Kate's great aunt Eby, the owner of Lost Lake. Kate feels drawn to Lost Lake and decides to take her daughter and go right away. When she arrives at Eby's resort, she learns that her aunt has agreed to sell Lost Lake. At the resort Kate meets an interesting group of people and learns a few things about her family. She becomes reacquainted with Wes, the boy she met when she visited the resort when she was 12. The author has created a story with wonderfully rich characters. I would love to spend a summer at Lost Lake watching Selma work her magic with the men, Devin run around in her tutu and cowboy boots, Bulahdeen planning parties, and Eby taking care of everyone. The way that Kate, Devin, Eby, Cricket, and Wes are dealing with grief was very realistic for me. Each of the characters handled things a bit differently but in an authentic manner. The only thing that the book seemed to be missing for me was a bit of unpredictability. I had a basic idea of what was going to happen in the book early on and there were no surprises. I would definitely recommend this book to other readers. It is a great example of magical realism written by a wonderful author.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am a big fan of Sarah Addison Allen's books. The characters always pull you in so that you can't stop reading until you find out what happens to them. This book is no exception.
JOMONV More than 1 year ago
This was a lovely book. Great read by one of my favorite authors.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Lost Lake was another magical creation from Sarah Addison Allen. While it wasn't my favorite of her books, it was still wonderful. She is, and will remain, one of my favorite authors.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was a nice book, but does not compare to Ms Allen's earlier novels. Lost Lake had peeks of the beautiful whimsy and enchanting phrasing that colored her previous novels, but not enough to make me fall in love with the book, Ms Allen is definitely a very talented writer and her precious gift for magical allusion and realism shows up in The Peach Keeper, Garden Spells, .Sugar Queen, and The Girl Who Chased the Moon. Those books are miracles of writing. I want to extend my thank you to Ms Allen for those beautiful books and send her my best wishes for continued good health.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This just the kind of book to take away the winter doldrums!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I waited two years for another Sara Addison Allen book. This is a lovely story of the magic of life well lived, of overcoming regrets and love.
Anonymous 5 days ago
I read all of the positive reviews and indeed this book started with promise. However i found the overall story line a bit predictible and i didnt care for the anticlimatic ending. I was also not a fan of the "other wordly" bits mixed into the book. Clearly there are many fans of this book but i am not one of them.
dld701 More than 1 year ago
Sarah Addison Allen is always like coming home. No matter who the book is about I feel I've known them forever. And once again with Lost Lake, I have returned home.
SarahJo4110 More than 1 year ago
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