I highly, whole-heartedly recommend this gorgeous historical and paranormal romance that entices the mind and the senses, and the heart too! THE SECRET LANGUAGE OF STONES, by M. J. Rose, can be read as a stand-alone, though it ties in with the first book in the series.
THE SECRET LANGUAGE OF STONES is a stunning historical gothic romantic suspense published by Atria, an imprint of Simon & Schuster, releasing on July 19th. Written to be a total and complete standalone novel, THE SECRET LANGUAGE OF STONES is the second title in M.J. Rose’s The Daughters of La Lune Series. Sexy, compelling, and seductive, be sure to grab your copy today!
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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. Full of romance, seduction, and a love so powerful it reaches beyond the grave, The Secret Language of Stones is yet another “spellbindingly haunting” (Suspense magazine), “entrancing read that will long be savored” (Library Journal, starred review).
I'm so happy when I find such an intriguing story.
Beautifully written and evocative, it fills the reader with the strange desire to experience thet fateful magic that animates the heroine's life. I love to travel through space and time in books. This one has transported to a France ridden with the grief of war, the mystifying echo of esoteric powers and the seduction of the arts.
Last year, I read The Witch of Painted Sorrows, and I was fascinated. Art, esoteric mysteries, Paris, a romance as passionate and transcending as La Lune, the ancient spirit of a witch who possess Sandrine and teachers her about darkness and light. Naturally, I was trembling with excitement over reading about Sandrine's daughter, Opaline, and her own venture into the mystic unknown of her own powers.
There are so many wondrous things I love about this story. Paris is both atmospheric and forlorn, steeped in the throes of the Great War and its many ugly creatures. Art and beauty abound in the description of places, streets, jewels, rooms and churches. All that envelopes a plot of historical gravitas where Russian expatriates mourn the fall of the Tsar, German spies are feared in the city of Paris, women take up jobs vacant by their men at war or buried.
The author has a melancholic, rich voice that breathes life into this tale of haunted romance, loneliness, guilt a legacy of magic and a period of time in turmoil that feels ever present.
I've learned about many enlightening subjects like how soldiers coped with disfigurement when they came back from battle, or the intricacies of Opaline's work with gems and metals at the jewelry shop. I confess I quickly became fascinated by the inner workings of her magic, and I wanted as much ghostly interaction with Jean Luc as possible.
My heart actually fluttered at the incredible adventure Opaline lives at the end. Suspense, Russian politics, betrayal and magic, and a sorrowful yet deeply romantic and hopeful conclusion that left me a little breathless.
What a beauty!
Every soul requires secret places for contemplation as well as open spaces for celebration.
M.J. Rose’sTHE SECRET LANGUAGE OF STONES – Review & Excerpt Tour Schedule:
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Read an excerpt :o)
Regret isn’t like grief; it never lessens, just stays the same. A little hard ball in the pit of your stomach.”
What do you have to regret?
“A boy went off to war, and all he wanted was my promise to wait for him.”
You didn’t give it?
“I should have, even if I didn’t love him. Realized he needed me and it wouldn’t hurt me to just tell him. But I didn’t love him. Not the way you wrote about love in your column. A grand love, you wrote. Did you have a love that grand?” I asked him.
No. I never did. Did you?
“No, and I wouldn’t want to. It would be too painful if it failed.”
But to experience it once—even if it is painful—don’t you think it would be worth it? Wouldn’t you want to know what that kind of intensity is like? Wouldn’t you want to feel that deeply?
“I don’t think most people can. Not the way I imagine it.”
Tell me what you imagine.
Leaning over, I shut off the light. If we were going to have a complete conversation, it wouldn’t be as peculiar in the darkness. I’d be less conscious of the empty room.
“I wouldn’t think it happens easily or often. Never for some people. I imagine a love like that is like a fire . . . starting with a spark and growing into a blaze . . . becoming an engulfing passion too hot for most people to withstand.”
But don’t you think a passion that strong would last? Even as glowing embers. Always illuminating the blackness. Always giving some warmth in the cold.
“It seems so tragic to me, but you make it sound wonderful.”
And it would be . . . to always possess the memory of what was possible. Of what could be. Tell me, what do you think it takes to make that first spark?
“What does it take to make a grain of sand become a pearl? They say the sand is an irritant. Maybe love starts that way too. You’re alone in yourself and then meet someone who upsets your balance, who you can’t quite explain away or put in a comfortable place. Someone who shakes your very soul. Who has ideas that jar you and make you think. Who does more than understand you, who understands what you need.”
Who shakes your soul. That’s lovely.
The warmth around my shoulders slipped down my back. Encircled my waist. I’d been kissed before, often enough by Timur, by Grigori, but Jean Luc’s kiss wasn’t like theirs. It began dancing on my lips, pressing on my mouth, and at the same time on my breasts and then at the same time between my legs. Creating sensations all over my body in the same instant. I became the spark about to combust. I smelled his scent of pungent limes, verbena, and myrrh. So intoxicating, at once forbidden and teasing. Like the ghost who now lay on top of me, beckoning me to slide into his dark embrace and get lost within sensation.
Don’t Miss the First Book in The Daughters of La Lune Series, THE WITCH OF PAINTED SORROWS!
ABOUT THE MASTERMIND
New York Times Bestseller, M.J. Rose grew up in New York City mostly in the labyrinthine galleries of the Metropolitan Museum, the dark tunnels and lush gardens of Central Park and reading her mother’s favorite books before she was allowed. She believes mystery and magic are all around us but we are too often too busy to notice… books that exaggerate mystery and magic draw attention to it and remind us to look for it and revel in it.
Rose’s work has appeared in many magazines including Oprah Magazine and she has been featured in the New York Times, Newsweek, WSJ, Time, USA Today and on the Today Show, and NPR radio. Rose graduated from Syracuse University, spent the ’80s in advertising, has a commercial in the Museum of Modern Art in NYC and since 2005 has run the first marketing company for authors – Authorbuzz.com
The television series PAST LIFE, was based on Rose’s novels in the Reincarnationist series. She is one of the founding board members of International Thriller Writers and currently serves, with Lee Child, as the organization’s co-president.
Rose lives in CT with her husband the musician and composer, Doug Scofield, and their very spoiled and often photographed dog, Winka.
Daughter of La Lune Pendant Giveaway!
We're celebrating the release of THE SECRET LANGUAGE OF STONES by giving away a beautiful Daughter of La Lune pendant. Designed by Cadsawan Jewelry, the silver pendant contains a labradorite, a magical stone excellent for awakening one's own awareness of inner spirit, intuition, and psychic abilities.
Good luck, book buddies :o)