Buying Options

Kindle Price: $13.99

Save $14.01 (50%)

These promotions will be applied to this item:

Some promotions may be combined; others are not eligible to be combined with other offers. For details, please see the Terms & Conditions associated with these promotions.

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Buy for others

Give as a gift or purchase for a team or group.Learn more

Buying and sending eBooks to others


Select quantity
Buy and send eBooks
Recipients can read on any device

Additional gift options are available when buying one eBook at a time.  Learn more


These ebooks can only be redeemed by recipients in the US. Redemption links and eBooks cannot be resold.

Quantity: 
This item has a maximum order quantity limit.

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

<Embed>
Kindle App Ad
Loading your book clubs
There was a problem loading your book clubs. Please try again.
Not in a club? Learn more
Amazon book clubs early access

Join or create book clubs

Choose books together

Track your books
Bring your club to Amazon Book Clubs, start a new book club and invite your friends to join, or find a club that’s right for you for free.
The Book of Lost Friends: A Novel by [Lisa Wingate]
Audible Sample
Playing...
Loading...
Paused

Follow the Author

Something went wrong. Please try your request again later.


The Book of Lost Friends: A Novel Kindle Edition

4.5 out of 5 stars 3,529 ratings

See all formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Price
New from Used from
Kindle
$13.99

Length: 387 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled Audible book:
Audible book
Switch back and forth between reading the Kindle book and listening to the Audible book with Whispersync for Voice. Add the Audible book for a reduced price of $12.99 when you buy the Kindle book.
Available
  • Due to its large file size, this book may take longer to download
click to open popover

Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
    Apple
  • Android
    Android
  • Windows Phone
    Windows Phone
  • Click here to download from Amazon appstore
    Android

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.

kcpAppSendButton
Amazon Business : For business-only pricing, quantity discounts and FREE Shipping. Register a free business account

Editorial Reviews

Review

Praise for The Book of Lost Friends

“Emphasizing throughout that stories matter and should never go untold, [Lisa] Wingate has written an absorbing historical for many readers. . . . Enthralling and ultimately heartening.”—Library Journal 

“[Lisa] Wingate makes history come alive. . . . Historical fiction fans will appreciate the authentic articles and the connection between modern times and the past, while adventure lovers will enjoy a voyage reminiscent of Huckleberry Finn.—Booklist 

“This is what I love most about historical fiction, the chance to learn things we unfortunately aren’t taught in schools.”—All About Romance
 
 
Praise for Before We Were Yours

 
“A [story] of a family lost and found . . . a poignant, engrossing tale about sibling love and the toll of secrets.”People
 
“One of the year’s best books . . . It is impossible not to get swept up in this near perfect novel. It invades your heart from the very first pages and stays there long after the book is finished. Few novelists could strike the balance this story requires but Wingate does it with assurance.”—HuffPost 
 
“Sure to be one of the most compelling books you pick up this year . . . [Lisa] Wingate is a master storyteller.”—Parade
 
“Every now and then a novel comes along that sweeps me off my reading feet. Before We Were Yours, by Lisa Wingate, is such a book. . . . Take note: This may be the best book of the year.”Shreveport Times
 
“Lisa Wingate takes an almost unthinkable chapter in our nation’s history and weaves a tale of enduring power. That Georgia Tann and her Tennessee Children’s Home Society could actually exist, unraveling the lives of countless children, will give you chills. . . . Vivid and affecting.”—Paula McLain, New York Times bestselling author of Love and Ruin
 
“This heartbreaking story is also heart-mending. I absolutely loved this book. I’m still basking in the afterglow, in shock at the true-crime elements, in awe at the journey of these characters who seem to have immortal souls.”—Jamie Ford, New York Times bestselling author of Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

Prologue

A single ladybug lands featherlight on the teacher’s finger, clings there, a living gemstone. A ruby with polka dots and legs. Before a slight breeze beckons the visitor away, an old children’s rhyme sifts through the teacher’s mind.

Ladybug, ladybug, fly away home,

Your house is on fire, and your children are gone.

The words leave a murky shadow as the teacher touches a student’s shoulder, feels the damp warmth beneath the girl’s roughly woven calico dress. The hand-stitched neckline hangs askew over smooth amber-brown skin, the garment a little too large for the girl inside it. A single puffy scar protrudes from one loosely buttoned cuff. The teacher wonders briefly about its cause, resists allowing her mind to speculate.

What would be the point?
she thinks.

We all have scars.


She glances around the makeshift gathering place under the trees, the rough slabwood benches crowded with girls on the verge of womanhood, boys seeking to step into the world of men. Leaning over crooked tables littered with nib pens, blotters, and inkwells, they read their papers, mouthing the words, intent upon the important task ahead. 

All except this one girl. 

“Fully prepared?” the teacher inquires, her head angling toward the girl’s work. “You’ve practiced reading it aloud?” 

“I can’t do it.” The girl sags, defeated in her own mind. “Not . . . not with these people looking on.” Her young face casts miserably toward the onlookers who have gathered at the fringes of the open-air classroom—moneyed men in well-fitting suits and women in expensive dresses, petulantly waving off the afternoon heat with printed handbills and paper fans left over from the morning’s fiery political speeches. 

“You never know what you can do until you try,” the teacher advises. Oh, how familiar that girlish insecurity is. Not so many years ago, the teacher was this girl. Uncertain of herself, overcome with fear. Paralyzed, really. 

“I can’t,” the girl moans, clutching her stomach. 

Bundling cumbersome skirts and petticoats to keep them from the dust, the teacher lowers herself to catch the girl’s gaze. “Where will they hear the story if not from you—the story of being stolen away from family? Of writing an advertisement seeking any word of loved ones, and hoping to save up the fifty cents to have it printed in the Southwestern paper, so that it might travel through all the nearby states and territories? How will they understand the desperate need to finally know, Are my people out there, somewhere?” 

The girl’s thin shoulders lift, then wilt. “These folks ain’t here because they care what I’ve got to say. It won’t change anything.” 

“Perhaps it will. The most important endeavors require a risk.” The teacher understands this all too well. Someday, she, too, must strike off on a similar journey, one that involves a risk. 

Today, however, is for her students and for the “Lost Friends” column of the Southwestern Christian Advocate newspaper, and for all it represents. “At the very least, we must tell our stories, mustn’t we? Speak the names? You know, there is an old proverb that says, ‘We die once when the last breath leaves our bodies. We die a second time when the last person speaks our name.’ The first death is beyond our control, but the second one we can strive to prevent.”

“If you say so,” the girl acquiesces, tenuously drawing a breath. “But I best do it right off, so I don’t lose my nerve. Can I go on and give my reading before the rest?”

The teacher nods. “If you start, I’m certain the others will know to follow.” Stepping back, she surveys the remainder of her group. All the stories here, she thinks. People separated by impossible distance, by human fallacy, by cruelty. Enduring the terrible torture of not knowing.

And though she’d rather not—she’d give anything if not—she imagines her own scar. One hidden beneath the skin where no one else can see it. She thinks of her own lost love, out there. Somewhere. Who knows where?

A murmur of thinly veiled impatience stirs among the audience as the girl rises and proceeds along the aisle between the benches, her posture stiffening to a strangely regal bearing. The frenzied motion of paper fans ceases and fluttering handbills go silent when she turns to speak her piece, looking neither left nor right.

“I . . .” her voice falters. Rimming the crowd with her gaze, she clenches and unclenches her fingers, clutching thick folds of the blue-and-white calico dress. Time seems to hover then, like the ladybug deciding whether it will land or fly on.

Finally, the girl’s chin rises with stalwart determination. Her voice carries past the students to the audience, demanding attention as she speaks a name that will not be silenced on this day. “I am Hannie Gossett.”

Chapter 1

Hannie Gossett—­Louisiana, 1875

The dream takes me from quiet sleep, same way it’s done many a time, sweeps me up like dust. Away I float, a dozen years to the past, and sift from a body that’s almost a woman’s into a little­girl shape only six years old.

Though I don’t want to, I see what my little-­girl eyes saw then.

I see buyers gather in the trader’s yard as I peek through the gaps in the stockade log fence. I stand in winter-­cold dirt tramped by so many feet before my own two. Big feet like Mama’s and small feet like mine and tiny feet like Mary Angel’s. Heels and toes that’s left dents in the wet ground.

How many others been here before me? I wonder. How many with hearts rattlin’ and muscles knotted up, but with no place to run?

Might be a hundred hundreds. Heels by the doubles and toes by the tens. Can’t count high as that. I just turned from five years old to six a few months back. It’s Feb’ary right now, a word I can’t say right, ever. My mouth twists up and makes Feb-­ba-­ba-­ba-­bary, like a sheep. My brothers and sisters’ve always pestered me hard over it, all eight, even the ones that’s younger. Usually, we’d tussle if Mama was off at work with the field gangs or gone to the spinnin’ house, cording wool and weaving the homespun.

Our slabwood cabin would rock and rattle till finally somebody fell out the door or the window and went to howlin’. That’d bring Ol’ Tati, cane switch ready, and her saying, “Gonna give you a breshin’ with this switch if you don’t shesh now.” She’d swat butts and legs, just play-­like, and we’d scamper one over top the other like baby goats scooting through the gate. We’d crawl up under them beds and try to hide, knees and elbows poking everywhere.

Can’t do that no more. All my mama’s children been carried off one by one and two by two. Aunt Jenny Angel and three of her four girls, gone, too. Sold away in trader yards like this one, from south Louisiana almost to Texas. My mind works hard to keep account of where all we been, our numbers dwindling by the day, as we tramp behind Jep Loach’s wagon, slave chains pulling the grown folk by the wrist, and us children left with no other choice but to follow on.

But the nights been worst of all. We just hope Jep Loach falls to sleep quick from whiskey and the day’s travel. It’s when he don’t that the bad things happen—­to Mama and Aunt Jenny both, and now just to Mama, with Aunt Jenny sold off. Only Mama and me left now. Us two and Aunt Jenny’s baby girl, li’l Mary Angel.

Every chance there is, Mama says them words in my ear—­who’s been carried away from us, and what’s the names of the buyers that took them from the auction block and where’re they gone to. We start with Aunt Jenny, her three oldest girls. Then come my brothers and sisters, oldest to youngest, Hardy at Big Creek, to a man name LeBas from Woodville. Het at Jatt carried off by a man name Palmer from Big Woods. . . .

Prat, Epheme, Addie, Easter, Ike, and Baby Rose, tore from my mama’s arms in a place called Bethany. Baby Rose wailed and Mama fought and begged and said, “We gotta be kept as one. The baby ain’t weaned! Baby ain’t . . .”

It shames me now, but I clung on Mama’s skirts and cried, “Mama, no! Mama, no! Don’t!” My body shook and my mind ran wild circles. I was afraid they’d take my mama, too, and it’d be just me and little cousin Mary Angel left when the wagon rolled on.

Product details

  • File Size : 15487 KB
  • Publication Date : April 7, 2020
  • Word Wise : Enabled
  • Print Length : 387 pages
  • Publisher : Ballantine Books (April 7, 2020)
  • Enhanced Typesetting : Enabled
  • Text-to-Speech : Enabled
  • X-Ray : Enabled
  • Language: : English
  • ASIN : B07ZC727WV
  • Lending : Not Enabled
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,529 ratings

Customer reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5
3,529 global ratings
How are ratings calculated?

Top reviews from the United States

Reviewed in the United States on April 19, 2020
Verified Purchase
101 people found this helpful
Comment Report abuse
Reviewed in the United States on April 7, 2020
Verified Purchase
95 people found this helpful
Comment Report abuse
Reviewed in the United States on April 17, 2020
Verified Purchase
52 people found this helpful
Comment Report abuse
Reviewed in the United States on April 27, 2020
Verified Purchase
45 people found this helpful
Comment Report abuse
Reviewed in the United States on April 20, 2020
Verified Purchase
32 people found this helpful
Comment Report abuse
Reviewed in the United States on April 16, 2020
Verified Purchase
27 people found this helpful
Comment Report abuse
Reviewed in the United States on April 13, 2020
Verified Purchase
26 people found this helpful
Comment Report abuse
Reviewed in the United States on April 10, 2020
Verified Purchase
24 people found this helpful
Comment Report abuse

Top reviews from other countries

pamela l bredin
5.0 out of 5 stars Best read in a long time!
Reviewed in Canada on July 2, 2020
Verified Purchase
2 people found this helpful
Report abuse
leslie graham
3.0 out of 5 stars Revealing
Reviewed in Canada on August 5, 2020
Verified Purchase
JBJ
4.0 out of 5 stars Very believable.
Reviewed in Canada on August 22, 2020
Verified Purchase
D. Elliott
5.0 out of 5 stars Captivating and Compelling
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 23, 2020
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Beanie Luck
4.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 29, 2020
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
One person found this helpful
Report abuse