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The Book of Lost Friends

A Novel
Written by: Lisa Wingate
Length: 15 hrs and 6 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (64 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

New York Times best seller • From the best-selling author of Before We Were Yours comes a new historical novel: the dramatic story of three young women searching for family amid the destruction of the post-Civil War South, and of a modern-day teacher who learns of their story and its vital connection to her students’ lives.

Best-selling author Lisa Wingate brings to life startling stories from actual "Lost Friends" advertisements that appeared in Southern newspapers after the Civil War, as newly freed slaves desperately searched for loved ones who had been sold away.

Louisiana, 1875: In the tumultuous era of Reconstruction, three young women set off as unwilling companions on a perilous quest: Hannie, a freed slave; Lavinia, the pampered heir to a now destitute plantation; and Juneau Jane, Lavinia’s Creole half-sister. Each carries private wounds and powerful secrets as they head for Texas, following roads rife with vigilantes and soldiers still fighting a war lost a decade before. For Lavinia and Juneau Jane, the journey is one of stolen inheritance and financial desperation, but for Hannie, torn from her mother and siblings before slavery’s end, the pilgrimage west reignites an agonizing question: Could her long-lost family still be out there? Beyond the swamps lie the limitless frontiers of Texas and, improbably, hope.

Louisiana, 1987: For first-year teacher Benedetta Silva, a subsidized job at a poor rural school seems like the ticket to canceling her hefty student debt - until she lands in a tiny, out-of-step Mississippi River town. Augustine, Louisiana, is suspicious of new ideas and new people, and Benny can scarcely comprehend the lives of her poverty-stricken students. But amid the gnarled live oaks and run-down plantation homes lie the century-old history of three young women, a long-ago journey, and a hidden book that could change everything.

©2020 Lisa Wingate (P)2020 Random House Audio
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excellent

Loved the story and the readers were bang on! I really liked the delivery of historical fiction by the author.

1 person found this helpful

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Loved this story

Lisa Wingate has such a wonderful story telling ability. Giving us different perspectives from different times. I will look for more titles written by her.

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phenomenal book

I have no words that can do this book Justice it's creative it's well-written it's well performed and it's a very good story that came from a dark terrible time in American history while the characters are fictional the story it's completely believable and and real and hits home for me as a black person. would recommend this book to anybody who will listen.

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Riveting......

Loved the story line. Lisa does an amazing job. My 3rd book with her. Found the terminology and various dialectics fascinating. Tough to put it down...

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Amazing!

I've learned so much from this book! I found it extremely hard to put down. Excellent story bringing characters together at the end.

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Excellent Story

I really enjoyed this novel, the story was catching... I was slightly disapointed with the ending... I was waiting for something big, and it never came.

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loved this book!

another amazing story right out of History with some true life experiences and letters.

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Lovely story

What a lovely story. So timely with what is happening in the world today. I thoroughly enjoyed.

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amazing story and performance

I couldn't put this down, I thought about the main characters throughout the days and took every chance to listen. I had goose bumps many times. you wont regret it! thank you for telling the story.

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Fantastic story

This book was one of those that you never want to end. It is a compelling story about the journey of 3 ladies just after the end of the civil war. Contrasted is a woman in modern times who is looking back at this long past era with a wonderful side story that dove tails perfectly in the end. I highly recommend this book to anyone who likes historical fiction that is based on historical fact. An awesome read.

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  • Mrstlg
  • 2020-04-11

I want more!!!

I LOVED this book. I did not want the story to end. I wanted more of the story between the end of then and the end of now!!! My heart hurts for the Lost Friends...as my heart always hurts when I read of these injustices done to any person or animal. I am so thankful for others like me who believe that God created us all equally and one should not be treated as less for any reason. Thank you Lisa Wingate for bringing the Lost Friends to life for me.

34 people found this helpful

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  • Taryn
  • 2020-04-18

Should be labeled Young Adult

This book missed the mark! After "Before we were yours" i had high expectations. This book had all the makings of a good book, contrasting post civil war life for the enslaved with modern day relations between the races in a small Lousiana town was interesting. A young teacher trying to make a difference with her students, bringing their families history to life was something that could inspire young people to pursue education as a career. Problem with the book was it fell flat - not edited well and written on a pretty low reading level. I think it would be great reading for a social studies class in 7th grade or for a parent/child bookclub... but for adults it missed the mark.

26 people found this helpful

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  • Regina Carol
  • 2020-04-19

Best read of 2020

Excellent story and a great narrative. If you have feelings of your family history you will love this story.

22 people found this helpful

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  • MamaFiner
  • 2020-04-19

One Of Those Stories That Stays With You

I've listened to many, many audiobooks over the years. Only a handful stay in my mind (and heart) long after they're over. This is one of them. Brilliant narration, absolutely brilliant. Storyline is thoughtfully woven, shifting between two characters--one from 1875 and the other from 1987--and told in such a way that you almost feel as if the one is telling her story to the other. I didn't want the story to end.

16 people found this helpful

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  • Steve E
  • 2020-04-20

Amazing story...

Lisa Wingate alwsys tells a fascinating, well written story and informs the reader of a nugget of history that needs telling

14 people found this helpful

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  • Dr. Smith
  • 2020-04-18

Plot holes galore

Good concept but huge plot holes. Nothing connects without giant leaps. it reads as if there were chapters cut out without regard for the story. Very disappointing

13 people found this helpful

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  • Smockingmama
  • 2020-04-16

Great book!

As a native of LA and resident of MS this story was a wonderful story of the history and struggles by those in past and present. Had a hard time putting it down- wanted to not stop once since started!! Loved all the voices true to the time, setting and ethnicity. Have enjoyed all of Lisa Wingate’s books and highly recommend them!

11 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2020-04-14

Loved the narration of this book!

Lisa Wingate has created another historical fiction masterpiece! I am a teacher and I loved how she intermingled the present day ELA lesson to the history of our nation.

8 people found this helpful

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  • Pearl
  • 2020-04-20

Excellent Story

Lisa has pulled together a great story to bring the past to the present. She weaves the lives of people together with her amazing storytelling capability.
Great readers for the audio version!

7 people found this helpful

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  • coffee shop owner
  • 2020-04-19

Beautiful story

I enjoyed every moment of this book. The narration was so entertaining and drew me in from the first chapter. The story was a beautiful story of family, love and devotion, blinded by color. Just like this author’s other books that I have read, this book kept me engaged from start to finish.

7 people found this helpful