Exclusive Excerpt: The Secret Language of Stones by M.J. Rose

This post contains affiliate links, meaning I’ll receive a small commission should you purchase using those links. All opinions expressed are my own. I receive no compensation for reviews.

Exclusive Excerpt: The Secret Language of Stones by M.J. Rose

the-secret-language-of-stones

With a spellbinding mix of history, mystery and romance, bestselling author M.J. Rose delivers the second installment in The Daughters of La Lune series—The Secret Language of Stones. I’m thrilled to give you a sneak peek at this novel, which can be read as a standalone and is out tomorrow!

Order Now: Amazon | iBooks | Barnes & Noble ✦

Synopsis

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 rich 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, protégé to the famous Faberge, and is known by the city’s fashion elite as the place to find the rarest of gemstones and the most unique designs. But war has transformed Paris from a city of style and romance to a place of fear and mourning. In the summer of 1918, places where lovers used to walk, widows now wander alone.

So it is from 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. But magic is a word Opaline would rather not use. The concept is too closely associated with her mother Sandrine, who practices the dark arts passed down from their ancestor La Lune, one of sixteenth century Paris’s most famous courtesans.

But Opaline does have a rare gift even she can’t deny, a form of lithomancy that allows her to translate the energy emanating from stones. Certain gemstones, combined with a personal item, such as a lock of hair, enable her to receive messages from beyond the grave. In her mind, she is no mystic, but merely a messenger, giving voice to soldiers who died before they were able to properly express themselves to loved ones. Until one day, 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.

Excerpt

Outside I found quiet. No sirens, few cars. The streets of Paris were eerily unwelcoming, but at least everything existed in three dimensions. Walking on cobblestones, looking above me at the stars, I focused on the facts of the world around me, not the fantasies I kept crafting in my little room. The buildings loomed large in the moonlight; footsteps of one other late-night pedestrian echoed in the still night. Glancing over I saw a lasciviously dressed woman hurrying in the opposite direction. Crossing rue Royale, I walked under the archway and into the Louvre’s courtyard and kept going until I reached the quai du Louvre. I descended the wide stone steps down to the path running along the river, the quai des Tuileries, and made my way as close as I could get to the water.

But this was nothing like walking by the sea in Cannes. I missed the scent of salt, the sound of the waves crashing, the give of the sand underfoot. Instead, the swiftly flowing river smelled cold and slightly metallic; the stones underfoot were uneven and unforgiving. Only the moon was the same. At that very moment, the same moon was shining down on the beach at home. And the soldiers in the field. And the tombstones in the cemetery.

The path appeared empty. I was alone. With no destination in mind, I just kept moving forward, hoping I might walk into proof that my mind wasn’t infected. Or even proof that it was. I just wanted an answer.

If I could just know I wasn’t insane, I could live with the discomfort. I could withstand the bittersweet romance with a lover whom I knew I would lose one day. I could tolerate the noise. But this lack of proof? This uncertainty? That’s what I couldn’t endure anymore. Were the voices in my head or in some other place? Was I making up Jean Luc, or was he a trapped soul communicating with me?

And if Jean Luc was real—if any ghost could be real—then this love affair was doomed, wasn’t it?

I’d reached the oldest bridge in Paris, the Pont Neuf, and stood underneath it. Water swirled in eddies around the bridge’s piles. So many had walked across its span since it had been built in the sixteenth century. How many times had my ancestor, the original La Lune, traversed it? Had she stood here and stared down at the water, missing her lover, wondering how she could live with the mistakes she’d made in trying to recapture what she’d lost, what she’d destroyed? Had she ever stood here and wondered if the river would welcome her and offer her the release she so badly wanted . . . freedom from longing, from loneliness?

Despondent, I climbed the stairs to the street level. I meant to turn away, not to walk out onto the bridge. But I did. I walked halfway out, stood at the railing, and stared down.

Reading Order


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Follow M.J.

Facebook | Twitter | Website

✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦

 follow vbb 2

Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Instagram | Goodreads | Subscribe by Email

Follow me on Snachat: vilmasbookblog

Subscribe for Updates:

Share This Post

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

On Facebook

SuperWebTricks Loading...

On Twitter

FRIDAY GIVEAWAY!!!! 💃🏻💃🏻💃🏻

Did you see the stunning new covers of the RLC series by @quirkybird?! 📚 I LOVE THEM SO MUCH! I totally have been digging the illustrated covers and these are so bright, fresh and... https://t.co/Vp6wwFloWk

FRIDAY GIVEAWAY!!!! 💃🏻💃🏻💃🏻

Did you see the stunning new covers of the RLC series by @imaquirkybird?! 📚 I LOVE THEM SO MUCH! I totally have been digging the illustrated covers and these… https://t.co/BtaSO5xdSd

Have you ever done a clinical grade peel before? What did you think? @drdennisgross gifted me their new Clinical Grade Resurfacing Liquid Peel—a pro-level mix of acids that helps reduce the appearance of pores,... https://t.co/59ducMW13a

Have you ever done a clinical grade peel before? What did you think? @dgskincare gifted me their new Clinical Grade Resurfacing Liquid Peel—a pro-level mix of acids that helps reduce the… https://t.co/3E8mniDnQX

Read an excerpt from Vengeance by @RebeccaZanetti! @1001darknights https://t.co/YDZJZYs6Lj

Who else is so excited about the aftermovie?! 🙋🏻‍♀️ Did you see that the movie tie-in paperback is out as of this week?! I’m obsessed with this cover and this limited-edition bookbeau is… https://t.co/57C1TedUkX

Q&A with Kristen Proby on the Crossover Collection! https://t.co/ep2VVT6LDi @Handbagjunkie @1001darknights

Read an excerpt from A Dangerous Collaboration by @deannaraybourn! @berkleypub https://t.co/A8cY1YQkVR

Read an excerpt: From Breath and Ruin by @CarrieAnnRyan! https://t.co/E3K1A87PCS

Such a wonderful French market - Les Enfants Rouges. Cafés, wine, cheese, flowers. Heaven. 🥖 🧀 💐☕️ @ Les Enfants Rouges — at Les Enfants Rouges https://t.co/Z8DcySZqsx

Anyone else a @tatcha_v fan? Do you use their skin mist? 🙋🏻‍♀️🙋🏻‍♀️🙋🏻‍♀️ I love pretty much their entire collection (and their packaging is so so elegant and gorg) and recently they… https://t.co/0AaqpXp8S8

📣 𝐆𝐈𝐕𝐄𝐀𝐖𝐀𝐘 📣 #partner

Meet Aimee Sinclair: the actress everyone thinks they know but can’t remember where from.

Except one person.

Someone knows Aimee very well.

Ahhh I cannot wait to… https://t.co/CVivrd1T9f

Some of the cool places from last night here in #London. 🇬🇧 😍 @ London, United Kingdom — in London, United Kingdom https://t.co/dAspwHr7Ad

Oh gosh you guys. The tea. The tea shops. I’m in love. 😍 I bought a beautiful Alice in Wonderland tea set and I cannot wait to show you guys when I get home (tightly packed now). We had… https://t.co/CiEOvjT2IT

Oh gosh you guys. The tea. The tea shops. I’m in love. 😍 I bought a beautiful Alice in Wonderland tea set and I cannot wait to show you guys when I get home (tightly packed now). We had… https://t.co/HFPdHjK7uh

Hitting some touristy stops in London bc it’s my first time here! Taking #TheMister along in my adventures! 📖 Now off to get some tea... it’s chilly! @ Buckingham Palace — at Buckingham Palace https://t.co/NsUDj38fRa

Hitting some touristy stops in London bc it’s my first time here! Taking #TheMister along in my adventures! 📖 Now off to get some tea... it’s chilly! @ Buckingham Palace https://t.co/WoQpACRE8L

Don't miss this SPARKLY 5 STAR Review for Tinsel by @devneyperry - Vilma Iris @vilmairisblog https://t.co/egDWgORRUn

“I believe you can break me
But I’m saved for the one who saved me
We only look like young stars
Because you can’t see old scars”
.
Deeply evocative with tension tearing at the seams,… https://t.co/61v75D12nM

Review + Top Rec: Daisy Jones & The Six by @tjenkinsreid! @hellosunshine @randomhouse @rwitherspoon https://t.co/SAr0949XzR

Load More...