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Lost Roses

A Novel
Length: 15 hrs and 21 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (472 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The million-copy best seller Lilac Girls introduced the real-life heroine Caroline Ferriday. Now, Lost Roses, set a generation earlier and also inspired by true events, features Caroline’s mother, Eliza, and follows three equally indomitable women from St. Petersburg to Paris under the shadow of World War I.

“A nuanced tale that speaks to the strength of women.” (Kirkus Reviews)

It is 1914, and the world has been on the brink of war so often, many New Yorkers treat the subject with only passing interest. Eliza Ferriday is thrilled to be traveling to St. Petersburg with Sofya Streshnayva, a cousin of the Romanovs. The two met years ago one summer in Paris and became close confidantes. Now, Eliza embarks on the trip of a lifetime, home with Sofya to see the splendors of Russia: the church with the interior covered in jeweled mosaics, the Rembrandts at the tsar’s Winter Palace, the famous ballet.

But when Austria declares war on Serbia and Russia’s imperial dynasty begins to fall, Eliza escapes back to America, while Sofya and her family flee to their country estate. In need of domestic help, they hire the local fortune-teller’s daughter, Varinka, unknowingly bringing intense danger into their household.

On the other side of the Atlantic, Eliza is doing her part to help the White Russian families find safety as they escape the revolution. But when Sofya’s letters suddenly stop coming, she fears the worst for her best friend. 

From the turbulent streets of St. Petersburg and aristocratic countryside estates to the avenues of Paris where a society of fallen Russian émigrés live to the mansions of Long Island, the lives of Eliza, Sofya, and Varinka will intersect in profound ways. In her newest powerful tale told through female-driven perspectives, Martha Hall Kelly celebrates the unbreakable bonds of women’s friendship, especially during the darkest days of history.

Audiobook cast of narrators: 

  • Sofya, read by Kathleen Gati
  • Eliza, read by Tavia Gilbert
  • Varinka, read by Karissa Vacker
  • Luba, read by Catherine Taber
  • The author's note read by the author 
©2019 Martha Hall Kelly (P)2019 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

“Epic.... [Martha Hall] Kelly’s gift is bringing to life and to light the untold stories of women and families far away from the war front yet deeply affected by the decisions of leaders and the efforts of fighters. Fans of historical fiction...and viewers of period dramas will want to clear their calendars when Lost Roses comes out.” (Booklist, starred review) 

“The writing is rich and vivid with detail about the period.... A nuanced tale that speaks to the strength of women.” (Kirkus Reviews)

“In an era crumbling under the weight of war, hatred, and devastation, the bonds of women not only endure but offer sustenance and hope in Martha Hall Kelly’s stunning depiction of the lives of Eliza Ferriday and the women she fought to save. Lost Roses is not only a brilliant historical tale, but a love song to all the ways our friendships carry us through the worst of times.” (Lisa Wingate, New York Times best-selling author of Before We Were Yours)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Lost Rose’s

I can’t even get past half way. The performer that has the voice of the American woman is so awful I can’t stand it. Her acting is so over the top I have to just stop listening. I am not sure which performer this is. But if I can find out I will never buy another book she narrates

17 of 17 people found this review helpful

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UGH!

If there were a way to give zero stars for narrators, I would do it! The Russian accents were abysmal and Eliza's voice was one of the most grating I've ever heard on Audible. The characters were wooden and not one was likable. Yuck. Funny thing though, I liked Lilac Girls quite a bit so I'm not sure what happened this time around.

11 of 11 people found this review helpful

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Russian accent so poor I found it difficult to understand.

I really tried to get into the story but the varying pitches in the one voice with the Russian accent prompted me to delete this book. Very hard to hear at times. Couldnt finish it. First time for me. I have listened to many Audibles.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Autumn
  • Marina, CA, United States
  • 05-08-19

Cruel people doing bad things to eachother

The characters were pretty hard to like. The Russians were very harsh and cruel to each other- The "white Russians" using their wealth to abuse peasants, and exploit them and starve them to death while turning a blind eye to the poor leadership, and the rebels turning the tables on their oppressors and causing harm to return. The shrilly voiced American woman and her daughter were similarly hard to like. Most of the characters were quite wealthy... There is a point in the book where the characters are positively shrieking at each other with voices that were like nails on a chalkboard.

The male love interests were not well thought out and seemed takcked on to add romance to the relationships. But the attraction seemed fake and inexplicable.

I listened just to find out how it ended, but killing the dog was probably the last nail in the coffin for me with this one.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Outstanding

Martha Hall Kelly did not disappoint! The first few chapters I was nervous being introduced to so many characters and not finding a flow. I wasn’t sure it was a book I would like less alone love. Thank goodness I kept reading every chapter was better than the last. It was outstanding! Kelly has clearly established herself as one of the great writers of our generation!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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entrancing journey through history<br />

Can hardly wait to get my hands on the next book in this family saga, The Woolsey Women. We hear of famous men in history, can name some without hesitation, however you seldom get such insight to women so brave for the sack of the oppressed. Author certainly has earned my respect as an exceptional writer.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Lilac Girls...<br />

I found this book to be very similar to Lilac Girls. instead of Slavic women and Paris you have Russian women. Maybe I read them too soon ...it was the same format.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Who read the part for Eliza?!!!!!

I am very much enjoying this book but I have had to skip over the chapters entitled “ Eliza “ because I’m sorry to say, the narrator is so awful. Her voice is brittle and every single word is read with a melodramatic tone. The Eliza chapters read by her sound as if they have been written by a different author - she renders her chapters simplistic and not believable.... The other narrators are lovely and I believe, reflect the author’s intentions.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Awesome book

Lilac Girls was fantastic! This is equally as good! Can’t wait for the next one!

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Loved the story, hated the reader for Eliza

I kept up with this because the story was so intriguing, but I agree with others that the woman who read the Eliza character was just terrible, awful, grating, way too melodramatic -- I wanted to punch her, which was too bad because the character is actually a good one. I thought the Russian accents were so-so, but they were not nearly as annoying as Eliza's.

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  • Mintychristine
  • 04-25-19

So Disappointing

I enjoyed Lilac Girls and expected a reasonably good story It was poor Extremely disappointed

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Natalia
  • 06-03-19

Difficult to differentiate narrators

In my opinion, all of the narrators for this book sound quite similar. Throw in a bit of background noise (traffic, public transport announcements, etc.) and you have a fabulous recipe for getting lost and forgetting who was talking or which character was doing what. I was so frustrated, I couldn't even finish the book.

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  • suzi doyle
  • 05-04-19

A really wonderful book excellent narration a

great insight into Russian aristocrats and Bolsheviks alike . Looking forward to the next book