Author: Stephanie Butland
Stephanie Butland is an author I was not familiar with before Lost For Words but she is one who is certainly on my radar now.
Lost for Words, something most would say I never am; though that is not altogether true it was enough to grab my attention. A secondhand bookshop and tattoos, well that was certainly two things guaranteed to pique my interest and when they are so poetically linked there was no chance I could resist.
I love books and I love reading, owning a bookshop is one of the things that I sometimes dream about and a bookstore is definitely somewhere I would love to work so this book had my attention from the start.
Loveday Cardew is our complex and intriguing heroine and I loved her from the very first page. She is quite the closed book so to speak, she prefers books to people and doesn’t open up easily. I thought Loveday must have been a nickname or assumed name because it’s not a first name you come across often; but no, that is what her parents named her.
I don’t really know where to start. The bookstore was a sanctuary, which is apt because I think all bookstores offer sanctuary of a sort. Lost For Words was Loveday’s safe haven, she found it as a teen and Archie, the owner, took her under his wing and offered her a part time job. A decade later and Loveday is now working full time and knows the store front to back. It is a store with character, it’s shelves mismatched and collected over the years.
Loveday isn’t a fan of people, she prefers books. Because books keep your secrets and they don’t judge. Loveday is pierced, tattooed and prickly; she doesn’t allow people in and she certainly doesn’t share personal information. Customer service is probably not the best career option for her but if she can avoid face to face interaction with the customers and focus on the books she is wonderful at her job, thorough and dedicated.
The story is told on separate timelines that all come together near the end to offer a complete picture. Slowly, through her memory, we learn about Loveday’s past. We know early on that something traumatic happened, something that changed her life fifteen years ago and she is still trying to heal from but we don’t know what it is. The way the story unfolds offers a wide scope of options and I was left guessing through a lot of the story trying to work out what had happened that affected her so profoundly.
Nathan is a magician by day and a poet by night, he has his share of quirky habits and skeletons in his closet that helped shape the man he is now. He is perceptive and caring, allowing Loveday the room she needed to piece the events together.
Archie was larger than life, there was always something going on. Loveday was pretty sure that a lot of his stories were at least a little exaggerated but it was beginning to seem that there may be more truth to them than anyone suspected.
Lost for Words is an engaging read that tugged the heartstrings and excited the imagination. This was a book of healing, addressing the past and moving forward but most of all it was a book of learning to trust again. It was a story of books and their significance in our lives.This is a story for all book lovers.