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August 2016 Indie Next List
“World War I Paris is a dangerous place for the young witch Opaline Duplessi. Still in denial about the true extent of her powers and hopelessly in love with a man she can never have, Opaline becomes caught up in a Russian emigre's plan to save a Romanov from Bolshevik spies on the windswept English coast. Magic and intrigue collide in this captivating follow-up to The Witch of Painted Sorrows.”
— Paula Longhurst (E), The King's English, Salt Lake City, UT
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 "dazzling" (Library Journal,
starred review) 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, protege to the famous Faberge, and is known to the city's fashion elite as the place to find the rarest of gemstones and the most unique designs. But in the summer of 1918, war has transformed Paris from a city of style and romance to a place of fear and mourning.
It is in 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. Magic is a word Opaline would rather not use, although even she can't deny she possesses a rare gift.
Certain gemstones enable her to receive messages from beyond the grave. In her mind, she is no mystic, merely a messenger, giving voice to soldiers who died before they were able to properly express themselves to loved ones. Until one day, when 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 a "fantastic historical tale of war, love, loss, and intrigue, enhanced by vivid period detail" (Melanie Benjamin, New York Times
bestselling author of The Aviator's Wife