2009: #39 – The Lost Hours (Karen White)

losthours Book #39  was The Lost Hours by Karen White.  The back of the book reads:

When Piper Mills was twelve, she helped her grandfather bury a box that belonged to her grandmother in the backyard. For twelve years, it remained untouched.

Now a near fatal riding accident has shattered Piper’s dreams of Olympic glory. After her grandfather’s death, she inherits the house and all its secrets, including a key to a room that doesn’t exist—or does it? And after her grandmother is sent away to a nursing home, she remembers the box buried in the backyard. In it are torn pages from a scrapbook, a charm necklace—and a newspaper article from 1939 about the body of an infant found floating in the Savannah River. The necklace’s charms tell the story of three friends during the 1930s— each charm added during the three months each friend had the necklace and recorded her life in the scrapbook. Piper always dismissed her grandmother as not having had a story to tell. And now, too late, Piper finds she might have been wrong.

This is my first experience with Karen White, and I was quite pleased.  I thought this was a touching story about regret, healing, and forgiveness, and a message about it never being too late for any of it. I liked Piper despite her malaise and stubbornness, because you could see the spark that was still hidden beneath it all.  I think I felt a connection to her because I was quite close to my own grandmother. The family mystery here is one that keeps you guessing… I wasn’t convinced I had it figured out correctly until it was nearly time to reveal it in the story.

There were a few niggling things about this that would keep me from giving it 5 stars.  One, I felt the Susan portion of the storyline was somewhat clumsy.  I understand she was mentally ill, but I still couldn’t make the connection between what she did and what she found.  Also, the timeline is a little funky in the beginning as it jumps forward in indeterminate amounts, and the point of view switches back and forth from “I” to “Piper”. But overall, I really enjoyed this story!

THE LOST HOURS VIRTUAL BLOG TOUR ’09 will officially begin on April 1 and end on April 30. You can visit Karen’s blog stops at www.virtualbooktours.wordpress.com in April to find out more about this talented author!

Page count: 343 | Approximate word count: 121,727

2008: Envy (Kathryn Harrison)
2007: Wish You Well (David Baldacci)
2006: The Lost German Slave Girl (John Bailey)
2005: On the Street Where You Live (Mary Higgins Clark)

Used in these Challenges: The Countdown Challenge; The Genre Challenge; 100+ Reading Challenge 2009; 2009 ARC Reading Challenge; 2009 Pub Challenge; The 999 Challenge; A-Z 2009 Challenge;

4 thoughts on “2009: #39 – The Lost Hours (Karen White)

  • April 8, 2009 at 10:32 am

    I’ve been wanting to read one of Karen White’s books ever since I heard about The House on Tradd Street. This one looks good to me too. Thanks for the review.

  • April 8, 2009 at 9:38 pm

    I am looking forward to reading this one myself, Jaime. Thanks for the good review. It will be interesting to see if the things that got in your way a little bit will hit me the same way. We can dish on it at our next lunch.


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