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Spellbook of the Lost and Found

Book Cover

Spellbook of the Lost and Found

Moira Fowley-Doyle
5
Tuesday, May 15, 2018

If you don't close your mouth, a fly will fly in, and then you'll have to swallow a spider to catch the fly, and then a cat to catch the spider, and then a dog to catch the cat, and then a goat to catch the dog, and then a cow to catch the goat, and then a horse to catch the cow, and then a lost soul to catch the horse.

Enchanting. Atmospheric. Mysterious. (a lost soul to catch the horse) Lush. Gritty. Suspenseful. There are so many good words I can think of to describe the beguiling collection of words that is this book. Dark. Mature. Sensual.

Wait for a sign.
If the lights go out, you will know the lost are listening.
If you hear dogs barking, you will know the lost have heard your call.
If you hear the howling, you will know the lost have answered.

Be careful what you bargain with;
Every lost thing requires a sacrifice--
A new loss for every called thing found.

What will you let go of?
What can you not afford to lose?
Consider carefully before you cast the calling:
It may not be for you to choose.

Be careful what you wish for;
Not all lost things should be found.

The narration weaves together three distinct voices, teen girls who take turns telling their stories of the people they encounter and the odd events that occur after they whimsically, drunkenly cast a spell of finding from a curious book they stumble upon in the woods. Some of the occurrences are explainable. Some aren't. Not even as dreams and hallucinations. The line between magic and reality has become blurred. And both--magic and reality--are an intoxicating mix of love, danger, heartache, growth, and connection. Surprising, unexpected connection.

Through it all, underneath the misty ambience, this is a coming-of-age tale. Of young people growing into adult experiences. Of finding who they are in response to unexpected ordeals. Because if you don't get lost, you'll never be found.

Reading this spellbook is a thrillingly murky and satisfyingly complex enthrallment.

Everybody's lost something. They may not know it, but everyone's got their defining loss: a parent, a pet, a trinket, a treasure, a memory, a belief. Some people have more than one. And if you're not careful you can spend your whole life looking for what you've lost.

But the truth is we're always losing something. Every day stray hairs fall from our bangs; we discard fingernail clippings; we shed skin. We're all made up of all of it: of longing, of belonging, and of all the things we lose along the way.

What have I lost?

What have I found?

What have I kept?

Chris K.

Written by Chris K.

Fun fact: Experts estimate that the average cruising airspeed velocity of an unladen European Swallow is roughly 11 meters per second, or 24 miles an hour.

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