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Lost Among the Living
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
113 posts | 56 read | 3 reading | 75 to read
England, 1921. Three years after her husband, Alex, disappeared, shot down over Germany, Jo Manders still mourns his loss. Working as a paid companion to Alex's wealthy, condescending aunt, Dottie Forsyth, Jo travels to the familys estate in the Sussex countryside. But there is much she never knew about her husbands originsand the revelation of a mysterious death in the Forsyths past is just the beginning All is not well at Wych Elm House. Dottie's husband is distant, and her son was grievously injured in the war. Footsteps follow Jo down empty halls, and items in her bedroom are eerily rearranged. The locals say the family is cursed, and that a ghost in the woods has never rested. And when Jo discovers her husbands darkest secrets, she wonders if she ever really knew him. Isolated in a place of deception and grief, she must find the truth or lose herself forever. And then a familiar stranger arrives at Wych Elm House
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kspenmoll
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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LeahBergen You‘ve had a great month! 4w
KristiAhlers We read four of the same books! Great month! 4w
kspenmoll @KristiAhlers Thanks! Which ones did you read? 4w
KristiAhlers @kspenmoll Lost Among the Living, The missing Triangle, The Ways we Say Goodbye and The Dictionary or Lost Wordd. Loved them all except for the True Crime read… 4w
46 likes5 comments
review
Kimberlone
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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Pickpick

My bad timing this month meant I didn‘t finish this until after the final #SundayBuddyRead discussion. If you like Simone‘s other supernatural historical mysteries, then this one will also be right up your alley. Elements seemingly inspired by Rebecca and Jamaica Inn and the least problematic romance of any of this author‘s books I‘ve read, make this more of a standout. However, I didn‘t really care for the main character or the ghost story plot.

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AmyG
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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I was able to finish the tagged book and Strangers on a Train for #AuthoraMonth - Patricia Highsmith. Both good books. Still working on Crossroads - Jonathan Franzen…which is a wordy, slow read. A bit of a struggle but hoping to finish this week.

@Andrew65 Thanks for the challenge!
#MarvelousMay

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DebinHawaii
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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Pickpick

Another St. James pick & a favorite (although I say that after most of them—someday I need to put them in an official favorites order).😉Great characters, post WWI Britain setting, great twists, plots & subplots that kept me guessing & an atmospheric supernatural edge are all this author‘s signature & it works for me. Thanks to @TheBookHippie for hosting the always engaging #sundaybudfyread discussions-it will be hard to wait August & her newest!

AmyG Ha, I say the same thing. After each book I say-it‘s my favorite! 1mo
TheBookHippie @AmyG 🤣🤣🤣 1mo
SilversReviews LOVE this cover!! 1mo
65 likes3 comments
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

NEXT WEEK IS OFF! My birthday Saturday my daughters birthday Sunday and it‘s a holiday weekend!

AmyG I hooe you are doing something special! 1mo
DebinHawaii Happy Birthday! 🎂🎉🎁🎈 1mo
mollyrotondo Happy Birthday!!! 🎉 1mo
41 likes3 comments
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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Our next Simone is this AUGUST!! Then we will have read them ALLLLL! She is writing so 🤞🏻 it is out soon!

#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

So happy to read this with all of you! I thank you for journeying along with me! What a ride! You all make reading so much more!

kspenmoll Thank you too Christine. Love these discussions & the books. I will be joining in the June pick. 1mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick I don't know why I skipped The Broken Girls so I still have one more left! 🤗 1mo
TheBookHippie @Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick ooo I liked that one so much!!!! 1mo
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TheBookHippie @kspenmoll 💙💙💙💙 1mo
AmyG Thank you @TheBookHippie as I would mostlikely never have read any of her books if not for you. Maybe she will release one next year for us! 1mo
TheBookHippie @AmyG 🤞🏻🤞🏻🤞🏻🤞🏻🤞🏻 1mo
Karisa 👏👏👏👏👏 1mo
DebinHawaii @Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick I missed that one when the #sundaybuddyread group read it but went back & read it on my own. Well worth it! 1mo
DebinHawaii I‘m a bit sad we‘re caught up, but happy that she seems like a fairly speedy author so 🤞🏼for no long delays between books. Thank you for another fabulous job hosting & for introducing me to an author who has become a favorite! 🤗 1mo
Bklover Are you doing The Book of Cold Cases in August? If so I would love to join 1mo
TheBookHippie @Bklover yes! You‘re welcome to join us I‘ll tag ya to remind you! 1mo
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

Many off stories that were nothing to do with plot..
What did you think of this woven tale ??

kspenmoll I really enjoyed it but I love her & know what to expect. The tangents do not bother me. For me it adds more to guess about, suspect. 1mo
Librarybelle I loved this one! Probably my second favorite of hers that we read 1mo
vlwelser I'm on board with the tangents. I love this author. Red herrings and subplots and general nonsense included. 1mo
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AmyG I really liked this one. I love trying to figure out what‘s going on....Ha, and I am always wrong. But it‘s fun to try to figure out. (edited) 1mo
TheBookHippie @vlwelser I like the nonsense! 🤣 1mo
Sargar114 I agree with everyone. The tangents don‘t bother me, in fact they add to the overall story even if it‘s not what it‘s ultimately about. For example: who‘d have thought Jo‘s boss where she met Alex was also going to be a spy. Loved the stuff like that! Not terribly important but adds depth to the story. 1mo
DebinHawaii I really enjoyed it and all of her books so far. Untangling the tangents & seeing where she goes with them add to the fun. I am excited for The Book of Cold Cases coming up! 1mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick This one was actually my least favorite, though still a good pick. This one felt more mystery than supernatural to me, so either that or the lack of awkward sex knocked it down a peg or two. Looking forward to The Book of Cold Cases in August and will likely hold off on The Broken Girls until next year just to drag out completing her current catalog. 1mo
TheBookHippie @Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick it‘s not my favorite. Broken Girls is still my fav but maybe because it was my first one of hers! I‘m so glad she‘s writing! 1mo
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
This post contains spoilers
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

Frances is still JUDITH to me still- Judith beheading Holofernes

THE STATUE
SALOME the book says
Prompted by her mother, Herodias, who was infuriated by John's condemnation of her marriage, the girl demanded the head of John the Baptist on a platter, and the unwilling Herod was forced by his oath to have John beheaded.
At any rate ominous ..

Jo going back to the house was she mad?
Would you go back ? Is Frances really gone?

kspenmoll Jo felt protected by Frances,connected to Frances. So In some ways not crazy, but she did run right into Robert- but Frances again protected her & prevailed. I think Frances may have left the house as her murder was solved, her murderer killed, so she could leave in peace. 1mo
Librarybelle Jo seemed to have a connection with Frances, and like @kspenmoll said, Frances seemed to protect Jo. 1mo
vlwelser 😂 if I was seeing ghosts I would have run away long before we got to this. But I like that she sort of goes to reassure Dottie. Because in a weird way I liked Dottie all along. 1mo
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AmyG What @kspenmoll said. Now that Francis saw justice perhaps she could be at peace. Joe was very brave and she had Alex with her. 1mo
Sargar114 Jo went back for Dottie. I think it was sweet. Like others said, Frances was never a threat to Jo so I‘m sure ultimately she knew she‘d be okay. 1mo
DebinHawaii St. James heroines are always much braver than I would be 😉😱 but I thought this was pretty low risk for Jo with Robert gone & Francis having protected her in the past & having the connection with her. 1mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick Hold my beer...I'm going in! 😂 Really, what's left for Jo to find at this point? This is probably the safest spooky place in all Simone's books. Robert's dead and the mystery solved. If Frances was still lingering, though I wouldn't have expected it, I'd maybe try to communicate with her. Tell her her mom & brother will be OK, no one is coming back to the house, it's OK to move on now. 1mo
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

Dottie…
We should have used you to win the war!
What do you think about her?
And the art?

kspenmoll I thought she was typical of women who were not able to use their smarts due to social mores. I think she would have been a happier person if she was able to contribute her boldness & intelligence to something significant during the war. She was a take charge person, a doer, a director. 1mo
kspenmoll The art was maybe a distraction, A way to use her gifts by collecting/selling/ knowing art/artists. 1mo
Librarybelle Completely agree, @kspenmoll ! 1mo
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vlwelser She sort of changes at the end. It's promising. 1mo
AmyG If it was a later time she probably would have been a very successful businesswoman. Not a fan of her but she had so much pain in her life. I can only hope there are happier times ahead for her. 1mo
Sargar114 As much as she did weird or unconventional things, I actually liked her. She was more a practical women but also a little secretly sentimental. As bizarre as her attempt to marry Jo and Martin; from her perspective she trusted Jo and Jo also needed some stability having lost Alex. She definitely would have been a force to be reckoned with in the war effort. 1mo
TheBookHippie @Sargar114 I agree. She would have been something. 1mo
DebinHawaii I really liked how she softened at the end & Hope she gets a grandchild or two. 1mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick I appreciate that Dottie wasn't inferior to Robert. That house was hers, she found a way to make money, as questionable a means as it was, and she loved her family. She wasn't exactly loving, but practical. I didn't love her, but I respected her and hope that she can enjoy her son, DIL, and future grandchildren. 1mo
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

Colonel Mabry ? What do you think of him?

kspenmoll I thought he was distasteful but doing his job as a spy/ M16. He did his part in manipulating Jo though & disrupt her pension Alex thought she was getting, encouraging Jo to question Alex‘s live, etc. For him, country above all else. 1mo
Librarybelle He reminds me of the stereotype “spy” - live for the next assignment, have no attachments, be able to move at a moment‘s notice. Personally, I didn‘t care for him. 1mo
vlwelser I also do not care for this dude. Simone seems to have pivoted away from this setting so maybe we're done with him. 1mo
See All 11 Comments
AmyG Agreed....not very likea le but doing his job. 1mo
Sargar114 As much as we disliked him, I thought he was a good character. I didn‘t trust him (for good reason) and thought him to be a suspect, but clearly a good red herring. I‘m not mad about it. 1mo
Karisa Was he connected to the Captain Mabry in Silence for the Dead? Weird that she‘d use the same last name. I just wanted to tell this book‘s Mabry to leave Alex alone. It‘s like he was the personification of military as a jealous ex 1mo
TheBookHippie @Karisa he‘s the dad of the patient right? 1mo
DebinHawaii @Karisa @TheBookHippie I thought he was Captain Mabry‘s father. 1mo
TheBookHippie @DebinHawaii yes! That‘s right. 1mo
Karisa @TheBookHippie @DebinHawaii Ah! Okay, I love her little Easter eggs 1mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick I liked him as a connection to Silence for the Dead, and he was a good character to help keep a shroud of mystery around things, but I didn't like him. He was too much for the job and still trying to get Alex. I wonder how involved with his family he is, considering how he's trying to pull Alex away from his wife again. 1mo
6 likes11 comments
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

Petra Jennings
Mr Wilde
Weird?
I didn‘t catch any if it, did you?

kspenmoll Very weird. So unexpected especially because initially I was suspicious of him. 1mo
Librarybelle Yeah…very weird 1mo
vlwelser Well she was washing his clothes so yeah this seemed like it was going to be a thing. 1mo
See All 11 Comments
AmyG A minor plot line. Odd and mildly important. 1mo
5feet.of.fury I had forgotten all about Petra 😅 1mo
TheBookHippie @vlwelser I had her in focus in the first part but the werewolf threw my attention off 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣😊 1mo
TheBookHippie @5feet.of.fury SAME! I had it in the first part of the book, but then I totally forgot! 🤷🏻‍♀️🤦🏻‍♀️ 1mo
Sargar114 I forgot as well. @amyg interesting how it can be that way. 1mo
DebinHawaii @TheBookHippie @vlwelser I thought that someone needed to talk to her when it first came up in the beginning & lost sight of her, but did not put her & Mr. Wilde “together.” It was a good little twist. 1mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick Funny twist! I was really hoping that Mr Wilde, the man with the physical handicap, would not be the guilty party as there was an air of sinister written around him. I chuckled that these two were involved. 1mo
TheBookHippie @Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick 🤣 I had similar thoughts!!!! 1mo
6 likes11 comments
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

ROBERT the evil one!
Jeepers
Money
It‘s ALWAYS MONEY..
Thoughts on Robert?
What would you do with his ashes
What did Dottie do, do you think ?
He washed up …

AND SO

So werewolf, hellhound, mythical wolf dog?
What was PRINCER?
Those were HIS LEAVES?

Fun find https://www.history.com/news/beast-gevaudan-france-theories

kspenmoll Great article! I love the extra info you post.thanks for all the effort you put into@our buddy reads! 1mo
kspenmoll I really had no idea it would be Robert. Actually I had no idea who it would be. Robert was not an attractive character, but his wife was not either-cold fish, tight wad. 1mo
kspenmoll The wolf etc seemed to be a part of her supernatural additions- I liked that ferocious beast once he protected Jo. 1mo
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kspenmoll Let him rot. 1mo
Librarybelle It almost seemed fitting that Robert was the bad one - my creep-o-meter was on full drive with him! 😂 1mo
vlwelser He was my 1# suspect so things just fell into place in a logical way imo. I am tempted to reread The Hound of the Baskervilles. 1mo
TheBookHippie @vlwelser oh that pairs nicely with this one! 🐺 1mo
AmyG Right? What IS Princer? Anyway, Robert got what he deserved. Good. 1mo
Sargar114 I was like @kspenmoll and thought him to be a more ancillary character. Way more evil than I expected, maybe the most terrible in her books…. One of my favorite aspects of St James‘ writing is how the supernatural characters are not the bad guys (almost scooby doo like 😂) 1mo
Sargar114 Oh and I‘m 100% sure Dottie flushed the ashes 1mo
TheBookHippie @Sargar114 Scooby Doo!!! 🎯 1mo
Karisa Great article! 100 people over just a few years. It must have been frightening for that area! I loved the idea of Princer in the story—something to protect those that needed help. St. James supernatural touches make anything possible in her books. It‘s fun to read 1mo
DebinHawaii I wasn‘t thinking Robert until after they visited Petra & the wife of the mystery man & Alex saying “maybe he was protecting you…” to Jo. It seemed she needed the most protecting from Robert. I like the werewolf or hellhound insinuation. (That article is so interesting!) And not to be indelicate but I hope if Dottie did indeed flush the ashes, she used the toilet before flushing them away! He deserved it. 😉 1mo
TheBookHippie @DebinHawaii oh yes that would be the best END 🚽 1mo
kspenmoll @DebinHawaii @Sargar114 Flush his ashes? I missed that but love the idea! 1mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick I admit I'm a little bummed it was Robert bc I thought he was too obviously evil. I think flushing the ashes is still too nice for Robert. Maybe drop them in a pig shit pen or something would be a better fit for someone who could murder their own daughter. As for Princer, I'm saying Hellhound coming from beyond to protect the living, though a ferocious beast like that article could be, too. Why don't they tell us these things in school? 1mo
TheBookHippie @Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick RIGHT?! How fascinating is this!!!! School could be so much more! 1mo
6 likes17 comments
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

Jo and Alex

“I was horribly irrevocably in love with him. This time the thought didn‘t bring the pain”
-Jo

We get waaaay more sex scenes in this book 🤣🤷🏻‍♀️😱🤫

What do you think of their relationship?

Is Simone getting any better at these ?

kspenmoll I think she is getting better. I think Jo‘s responses to Alex come across as authentic-the pain, the anger, the feelings of betrayal- but grounded in their once love. It could have gone either way- I was waiting to see if she walked out for good especially with her mother now dead. But I feel she did make a choice to stay. 1mo
kspenmoll Love the pictures!!! 1mo
Librarybelle The sex scenes did not seem as uncomfortable to read. Their relationship happened super fast, and I think they realized the bond was still there. They seem like they need each other, so hopefully that continues beyond the story. 1mo
See All 14 Comments
vlwelser I think she's gotten SO much better. But I think the main character here had more depth possibly than earlier ones. 1mo
vlwelser Also that weird pic with the umbrella is my fav. 1mo
TheBookHippie @vlwelser SAME 🤣 1mo
TheBookHippie @kspenmoll so fun to try to find them. ♥️ 1mo
AmyG I agree with @Librarybelle and I am happy things worked out for them. Jo loves Alex very deeply. I just think she needed to come to terms with her anger and all the years apart. She needed to trust him again. 1mo
Sargar114 @Librarybelle @vlwelser good points. I agree the scenes are much better in this one. They seem to have less awkward details so I guess less is more 😂. However we did learn the word debauched so there‘s that 🤷🏼‍♀️ 1mo
Karisa @Sargar114 agreed! Less details but more scenes was a much better formula. Great pictures of 1920s debauchery, @TheBookHippie 😂 1mo
TheBookHippie @Karisa the pictures are the best part ! 🤣 1mo
DebinHawaii I agree, she is getting better with the sexy scenes. Debauching without too many awkward details! 🤣🫣🤣 It does make it a bit less fun though! And great pictures! 1mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick Why is my man not showing my bloomers to the world when I hold an umbrella? Does he even love me?! 😂 Less detail, more scenes between the now husband & wife is a good combo here. I think Simone has found a good balance. These aren't romance novels, so we don't need explicit details, though let's be honest...I like the smut. Awkward and all. I think seeing the crime solved and signs that Alex is truthful now helps. 1mo
TheBookHippie @Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick honestly her sexy scenes that are awkward are my favorite! 1mo
5 likes14 comments
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

Martin -he does love Cora and she does love him! So how do you like how his story played out…?

kspenmoll I think they do love each other after all they have share & her whisking him away & nursing him, finding the right doctors, etc. It may not be a passionate love, but A more practical live which can always grow over time especially if he heals. 1mo
Librarybelle I agree with @kspenmoll . The love may not be passionate, but it appears that that have a bond with each other and one that I hope can evolve over time. 1mo
vlwelser I thought this was cute. I was definitely ok with them getting a happy ending. Or beginning. Whatever. 1mo
See All 10 Comments
AmyG I am happy things worked out for them. Not a passionate love, but they seem very committed to each other. 1mo
5feet.of.fury I‘m very glad for them! 1mo
Sargar114 It seems their love will be the based on a true friendship and that is the best kind. I‘m happy they found each other and will be sharing their lives. 1mo
Karisa It seemed the best possible ending for Martin and Cora. I thought he had no hope so seeing that turnaround was refreshing. Dottie‘s reaction was the icing on the cake. 🎂🧁 1mo
Kdgordon88 I am happy for them. Through Cora Martin found a beginning not an end. 1mo
DebinHawaii Very happy it turned out this way for them, a friendship, partnership and love that I think will continue to grow. 🤗 1mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick I think there is a friendship and mutual respect that can turn into a deeper love. I think their conspiracy to leave Dottie behind proves they can be “partners in crime“ and build a good marriage. Martin may not heal 100%, but he has a chance at a good life and I think Cora realizes that men her age are harder to find right now and she found one who treats her well that she gets along with. I'm happy about their union. 1mo
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BookwormAHN
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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Pickpick
Clwojick Way to go! 1mo
TheAromaofBooks Woohoo!! 1mo
63 likes3 stack adds2 comments
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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Time to discuss the ending and the whole book! 🤫🤐 SHHHHH until we see you SUNDAY 👀

#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD 📗💚

vlwelser Does this mean no more werewolf jokes? 😂💚 1mo
TheBookHippie @vlwelser well it means google will be sad not hunting down werewolf pictures…. 1mo
kspenmoll @vlwelser Loved the werewolf touch! No jokes ir google searches..😢😀 1mo
44 likes3 comments
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vlwelser
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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Pickpick

❤🤐

I mean, obviously it was werewolves. 😂

#SundayBuddyRead @TheBookHippie

#BookSpinBingo @TheAromaofBooks

AmyG Duh 🤣 (edited) 1mo
TheBookHippie Seee. Told you. 🤫🤐 1mo
TheAromaofBooks Woohoo!! 1mo
39 likes3 comments
review
Sargar114
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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Pickpick

Strong female lead, terrible humans, multiple suspects, and some super natural flavor. St James is a master at her craft and this one is no exception. Read for #sundaybuddyread and overlapped as my #doublespin 🤘

kspenmoll Great review! 1mo
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KristiAhlers
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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Pickpick

I LOVE this authors writing. Modern day/historical setting I‘m there for it! This book had such great gothic vibes and I truly felt immersed in the story right along with the characters and that to me the sign of a fantastic read! #BuddyRead #mayreadinglist @TheBookHippie @Librarybelle

AmyG Yes, I finished this today and it was wonderful. 1mo
Librarybelle This book was amazing!!! 1mo
TheBookHippie 🤍🤍🤍🤍 1mo
See All 7 Comments
julieclair Perfect description! Such a great read. 1mo
melmes Looks awesome! 1mo
melmes Would you recommend it? (edited) 1mo
KristiAhlers @melmes absolutely! 1mo
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review
CoffeeNBooks
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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Pickpick

Jo is a war widow who becomes the assistant to her husband's aunt. She soon realizes that all is not what it seems. Another great St. James book! I love how she mixes mystery with the paranormal.

Thanks @TheBookHippie for picking another great book for the #SundayBuddyRead!

TheBookHippie ♥️♥️♥️♥️it‘s so much fun with us all!!! 1mo
69 likes1 comment
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Librarybelle
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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Pickpick

Did I stay up way late to finish this one? Yes, yes I did. I‘ll pay for it tomorrow, but I had to find out what happens! Without giving away any spoilers, this #SupernaturalThriller is probably my second favorite by St James…she has this incredible way of building suspense with a multitude of clues and a creep factor that makes me keep all of the lights on as I read. Cannot wait to discuss this next Sunday! #SundayBuddyRead #BBRC #YeahBaby

Andrew65 Great 👏👏👏 1mo
5feet.of.fury I‘m so excited for the conclusion of this one! 1mo
See All 6 Comments
CoffeeNBooks I can't wait to finish reading this one this week! 1mo
Librarybelle @5feet.of.fury @CoffeeNBooks It is so good! 1mo
LibrarianRyan yeahhh 1mo
74 likes6 comments
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kspenmoll
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#sundaybuddyread #SimoneStJames #ghosts #supernatural #historicalfiction
I had to finish this today! The ending was just as surprising to me as I expected it would be. No review because I do not want to say anything to spoil our discussion next Sunday.

TheBookHippie ❤️❤️❤️ 1mo
AmyG I can‘t wait to finish. 1mo
Bklover What a gorgeous photo! 1mo
65 likes2 stack adds3 comments
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kspenmoll
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#porchlife #afternoonsnack #sundaybuddyread #SimoneStJames
I am excited to be finishing this up after today‘s discussion.

Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks Beautiful 😍 1mo
63 likes1 comment
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

I‘m sure I missed something.

I also have zero clues 🤣🤷🏻‍♀️what‘s happening …🤯

CANNOT WAIT TO FINISH! So glad I didn‘t stretch this out all five weeks of May!

Anyone have guesses????

Librarybelle No clue, but I am so ready to find out what happens! (I‘m also glad we‘re finishing as soon as we are! 😂) 1mo
5feet.of.fury The week 3 chapters really brought up ALOT of questions. Can‘t wait to see how it ties together! 1mo
Sargar114 I legitimately have no idea, but am thoroughly enjoying the ride. This one is my favorite of this time period. I loved seeing how much St James writing has evolved. This one is so much more layered than her other ones. 1mo
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TheBookHippie @Sargar114 I agree. I love this time period! This one is much better! Although I‘ve thoroughly enjoyed every single one. 1mo
TheBookHippie @Librarybelle seriously I need to know! 1mo
Sargar114 @TheBookHippie I have too. And this is not my preferred genre, but St James is a master at her craft! 1mo
CoffeeNBooks I'm looking forward to finishing this one to see how everything connects! 1mo
TheBookHippie @Sargar114 this is so not my genre either, but I love her writing it‘s oddly soothing … 1mo
vlwelser St James clearly kept improving as she went along. It seems like every one is my new fav. I'm probably just going to go ahead and finish. So 🤐. But.... Thank you for not making this 5. 1mo
BookwormAHN I can't wait to finish it 😺 1mo
julieclair I am fascinated to see how this all comes together. And I'm very glad this was 4 weeks instead of 5. 👍 1mo
kspenmoll I cannot wait to finish either. I love her books. Too many strands, clues to keep track of as usual. 1mo
DebinHawaii I am looking forward to finishing. As I was sick last week, I read the last two sections really close together & it was hard to stop. I want to see how it all wraps up. 🤗 1mo
AmyG My guesses never come true. But it is so fun to guess. Really enjoying this one. 1mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick This one is leaving me scratching my head. I can come up with valid reasons why every damn person other than Jo could be up to something nefarious but then also a readin why they'd be a red herring. I like this one, but I think it's my least favorite of them all. Maybe because the sex wasn't completely awkward! 🤣 1mo
TheBookHippie @Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick not completely 🤣🤣🤣 1mo
11 likes16 comments
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

Dead leaves what is it???

Also her mom died? WHAT?

Librarybelle So tragic about Jo‘s mom. I cannot help but think of decay with leaves - the decay of the facade that Dottie puts up for her family. Secrets are about to be revealed. 1mo
Sargar114 I don‘t know about the leaves either but that‘s a good thought @Librarybelle As sad as it is for Jo to lose her mother, I can only imagine there is quite a bit of relief as well. While now having no blood family, she can now focus on her life and what‘s best for her…on top of all the mysteries she has to solve lol 1mo
CoffeeNBooks I definitely hope St. James explains the leaves in the last section- I'm curious about their significance! 1mo
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TheBookHippie @CoffeeNBooks if she doesn‘t I‘m asking on IG ! 🤣 1mo
vlwelser Maybe this gives St James an opportunity to use her as a ghost. Her books do get a little crazy sometimes but that might be a stretch. 1mo
Karisa Was her whole mom and scratches thing just a red herring? Better understanding of Frances/mental illness? I thought the mom dying thing came out of nowhere.,. 1mo
TheBookHippie @Karisa she had that dream about someone hurting her mom and a name in the beginning of the book, was it just a red herring ? Or will it connect?! 1mo
Sargar114 @TheBookHippie if she answers, you need to screenshot that and put it on here!!!! 1mo
Karisa @TheBookHippie Oh yeah… I think I ignore dreams too much in books. I need to pay more attention to those details 1mo
BookwormAHN According to Google dead leaves typically represent death and sadness. So maybe the leaves represent the family's turmoil and Frances' death. 1mo
julieclair I'm wondering if the mom was murdered... 1mo
kspenmoll The mom thing threw me- is it related? Dead leaves are sign of endings- & as yes, death. 1mo
DebinHawaii Yes, her mom dying so suddenly seems suspicious & I‘m still interested in the scratches. Not sure how it‘s all related, the leaves too. 🤔 1mo
AmyG I googled wht dead leaves foreshdowed. One idea was secrets. That family has some serious secrets. Jo married Alex after knowing basically nothing and out come the secrets. 1mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick I don't know if mom's sudden death is going to tie into the mystery or if it was just a way of making Jo fre of that burden now that she's got Alex back. 1mo
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

ALEX?
Just wow
And she was tying CODE?!
Hans is ALEX
…Jo had influenza when Alex left
Did she give it to him!

So are they still a couple?

All the stocking talk is the inspiration for the pic🤣

Why is he staying in bed with her? To protect her? What does he know?!

Librarybelle I kinda had suspicions we would see Alex. I‘m debating whether or not he‘s trying to be chivalrous and “protect” Jo, or if it‘s all an act. We know he‘s lying to everyone else. Is he telling Jo the truth? My hopeless romantic heart is hopeful that he‘s got Jo‘s best interests in mind. We‘ll see, I suppose… 1mo
Sargar114 @Librarybelle I generally think Alex is telling Jo the truth and lying to everyone else. I think he is trying to protect her. By having a small wedding so the military and his family wouldn‘t know who she was. I also wasn‘t surprised we‘d see Alex given all the mentions of him missing vs dead but I am surprised it was so early in the book and that he‘s so integral to the story. I‘m kinda loving it! 1mo
TheBookHippie @Sargar114 I‘m hoping he is telling the truth along with @Librarybelle I hope they end up happily ever after…which is quite unusual for my jaded black heart 😳🤣🤫I‘m quite liking this read! 1mo
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CoffeeNBooks I think Alex is trying to protect Jo- I think he knows there's a lot of suspicious stuff going on at Wych Elm as well as with Colonel Mabry, and possibly even with people in town, like Mr. Wilde. I think he's telling her as much as he can. 1mo
vlwelser That stocking thing was awesome. I love her weird sex scenes. 1mo
TheBookHippie @vlwelser research 1920s stockings it‘s a whole other rabbit hole 🤣🤣🤣 1mo
Karisa @TheBookHippie 🧦😂 1mo
Karisa I was sick all last week. So between this book and bingeing Downton Abbey, I‘m loving all the 1920s fashion, art, and big houses in the country! 🤞Alex is not a jerk! 1mo
TheBookHippie @Karisa lots of covid and influenza b around here where we live 😩 hope you‘re feeling better. I‘ve somehow managed to “just” have an RA flare. 😅 1mo
Kdgordon88 I wasn‘t surprised to see Alex show up and hope he‘s a good guy. 1mo
Karisa @TheBookHippie Ouch! Hang in there. I think the Covid cases are way underreported here. I called Kaiser and they were like “🤷🏻‍♀️ get better” Now my daughter has it but seems mild. Ready for an end to the pandemic! 1mo
BookwormAHN I was surprised Alex showed up so soon as well and I loved the stocking scene 😸 1mo
julieclair I am so hoping Alex turns out to be a good guy, but I have my doubts. I would love Alex and Jo to have a "happily ever after". But the rest of them... I could care less! 1mo
kspenmoll I too am hoping everything between them(Jo & Alex)works out in the end as @Librarybelle @TheBookHippie said. 1mo
kspenmoll @Karisa I am glad you are better! My husband & son both have Covid. My husband got an antiviral drug( he is older & his immune system is compromised) she he is slowly recovering. I remain neg. 🤞🏻 1mo
DebinHawaii Like @Sargar114 I was surprised that Alex came back this early in the book although I fully expected him to be alive. I feel like he & Jo will solve the mystery & murder together & he is telling her what he knows & being truthful. @Karisa I feel you with the COVID thing—I was sick for a week & I am still just so tired. 😷😵 1mo
Karisa @DebinHawaii @kspenmoll 😥 It‘s such a bad virus. Wishing you and yours health and 💪 1mo
TheBookHippie @DebinHawaii ugh…. Awful! Hope you get your strength back soon! ❤️ 1mo
TheBookHippie @kspenmoll 🤞🏻🤞🏻🤞🏻🤞🏻🤞🏻 1mo
AmyG @TheBookHippie Feel better. Glad you are better @Karisa and @kspenmoll I hope your husband and son are better soon. ❤️ 1mo
AmyG I knew Alex would come back. Jo wasn‘t over hum and Simone‘s books always have a love story plotline. I agree with @CoffeeNBooks that he is protecting her. I think he is telling her as much as he feels he can but there‘s more to know. And I am wondering if that more….is the Francis plot line. 1mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick I didn't expect to see Alex so early but it's interesting having him in the mix. I hope he's being honest with Jo. However, given his sudden emergence, he seems a little pushy. Sure, they've (presumably) been sex-free for 3+ years but give her a few hours, man! 1mo
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

Colonel Mabry things are going to get more difficult ! Is he on the level?!

Robert ick just slime …

Mr Wilde -“it must be difficult to be such a perceptive woman !!!!!!! “

Perceptive/mad Jo wonders..

The men in this book, yuk. Also are they all suspects?! How do they fit?

5feet.of.fury Colonel Mabry - I‘m wondering how much he is manipulating. 1mo
Librarybelle The men are very creepy…ugh! I feel like there is something huge happening, and poor Frances stumbled upon it. These men are hiding something big. 1mo
Sargar114 Colonel Mandy seems to be number one suspect in my book. Or at least is manipulating a lot of the piece. While the rest are awful, that‘s as far as it gets I think. 1mo
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vlwelser I'm starting to lean toward Robert as my 1# suspect. But Mabry is looking really cagey here. 1mo
Karisa @vlwelser Exactly! I don‘t like either of them but Robert is worse. Explains his attack of Jo in the woods too. 1mo
Sargar114 Gasp maybe they‘re in cahoots! (Really an excuse to use the word cahoots) 1mo
julieclair I think Mabry has developed a grudging respect for Jo, and is trying to level with her when he can. Same with Wilde. Robert, meanwhile, is as creepy as they come. I think he may be the one who killed Frances. 1mo
BookwormAHN I think Mabry is your typical anything for the military type but I don't trust Robert. 1mo
kspenmoll Marbry typical of soys/intrigue/ military at the time. I agree w @julieclair about him developing a “ grudging respect” for Jo. Also I like what @Librarybelle said about how something big will be revealed. So much going on that leaves so many possibilities open. 1mo
DebinHawaii Mabry seems a bit too obvious-other than manipulating people for the military. The jury is still out on Wilde for me & I‘m thinking Robert seems to obvious too, but in the end 🤷🏻‍♀️ I just don‘t know. I blame COVID brain! 🤕 1mo
AmyG I think Mabry is in the spy business. Is Robert a spy or just a creepy douche? 1mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick I almost feel like Robert is so gross that it's a red herring. I still think he just distanced himself from the house because he sensed evil there or noticed personality changes among its inhabitants. 1mo
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

How do you get your husband to tell you everything? You don‘t…thoughts on Cora?

Apparently Cora looks like Anne Boylen in the blue dress ! Fun article https://www.vogue.co.uk/fashion/article/anne-boleyn-aw20-muse

Sargar114 She seems like she puts up a brash exterior but ultimately doesn‘t seem so bad. But to be honest with everything going on I haven‘t really given her much thought. 1mo
5feet.of.fury I liked how she was with both Jo and Martin. She seems very forward maybe awkward and brash, but also kind and thoughtful. I like that. 1mo
Librarybelle I‘ve not given Cora much thought. The comparison to Anne Boleyn was interesting, though! 1mo
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vlwelser I love this painting you found. My thought on this was to ask if it was foreshadowing. I guess we'll see soon! 1mo
Karisa @vlwelser Oh no! Poor Cora… could that make her the treasonous spy then? (My real spy money is on Robert though. He‘s so creepy.) 1mo
vlwelser @Karisa I was thinking scapegoated and beheaded by husband but whatever floats your boat. 😂 1mo
TheBookHippie @vlwelser I wondered that too or if it was too obvious?! 1mo
vlwelser Not sure anything is too obvious for St James (except maybe werewolves - still laughing about this). But this does seem unlikely. 1mo
julieclair Wow... the whole Anne Boleyn thing went right over my head. I took it at face value... a way to give us a visual of what Cora's dress looked like. 🤪 Now y'all have really got me thinking! 1mo
BookwormAHN The Anne Boleyn comment creeped me out. I also took it as foreshadowing but I rather hope I'm wrong. 1mo
kspenmoll @BookwormAHN I caught that reference too & worry that Cora will be killed by the werewolf or Martin will kill in a PSTD episode. I like her! 1mo
DebinHawaii I didn‘t think much of the Anne Boleyn reference either but now you all have me wondering! 🤔 1mo
AmyG Maybe Francis isn‘t dead? Remember Jo having to visit the grave? Did Francis kill the man and they are all covering for her? (edited) 1mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick I didn't really give the comment much thought. I assumed Cora was thrown in just to settle Martin. Now I'm afraid she might get beheaded. 1mo
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

Frances

What is in the woods?! Werewolf?
Why is the camera soaked?!
Did Cora do it? Or Frances? Or?

Martin burned Frances letters?!
What does he know?!

🤯

Sargar114 @TheBookHippie I thought werewolf toooooo!!!! I wonder if Martin is actually a werewolf (literally just thought of that) but with his injury…hmmm 🧐 1mo
5feet.of.fury The bit about Martin burning the letters is very odd, I‘m sure Jo will confront him about it. 1mo
Librarybelle The burning of the letters! So suspicious!! Martin is hiding things, though I think we all kinda figured that out. 😂 1mo
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vlwelser @TheBookHippie @Sargar114 werewolf? Really? You girls are a trip. 1mo
TheBookHippie @vlwelser Well?! Is Robert a werewolf ? 🤣🤷🏻‍♀️🤯 he did come out of the woods at one point disheveled 🤫😅 1mo
Karisa I‘d kind of forgotten about the Martin burning the letters scene. That was really strange… @Sargar114 🐺Martin?! I love it! 😂 How much fun would that be?! 1mo
julieclair I wonder if the letters could have contained sketches? 1mo
julieclair I am mystified about the wet camera. My suspicion is that Cora flooded it, but I have absolutely no idea why. 🤔 1mo
Sargar114 @TheBookHippie 🤯. @Karisa so many possibilities; I‘m loving it!!! 1mo
BookwormAHN @Sargar114 I rather hope he is, that would be fantastic 😸 1mo
kspenmoll I was bummed Martin burned Frances‘s letters. So may different threads- what are red herrings & who knows what? Robert a werewolf? That is something I did not think of… 1mo
DebinHawaii Hmm… was not thinking werewolf more hellhound but that‘s interesting. Martin burning the letters is suspicious but is it something or a misdirect? I am hoping it wasn‘t Cora who flooded the camera. 1mo
AmyG What I like about this book is everyone is suspicious. Yet not. 🤣Martin burning the letters. He seems like a decent guy but is hiding-something. I think they might all be hiding-something. 1mo
vlwelser The Hound of the Baskervilles! 1mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick I'm with those thinking hellhound. I thought Frances closed the camera to protect Jo. I wonder if Martin is burning evidence of the crime or if he wrote with Frances about his health or something less suspicious that he doesn't want getting out. 1mo
TheBookHippie @Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick calling it hellhound from now on … 1mo
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

Frances sketch book
How did it get in Jos bed?
What is at the window?!
Is it the man from the forest !?
What did Frances know? Did she know she knew?
Dead man in the woods- killed by same person who killed Frances? Was he a spy?

SO MANY QUESTIONS?

Sargar114 I am thinking the man in the forest may be the one that killed Frances. Stole her sketches and did away with her and then Princer had his revenge. I don‘t think Frances knew what she knew when it came to what she was drawing. And of course Frances left the sketchbook for Jo, it‘s Simone St James, lol 1mo
Librarybelle I‘m so looking forward to the last section, where everything comes together! It seems like the man in the woods is connected to what we learned in this section, so I‘m anxious to find out the whole story! And, Frances gave Jo the sketchbook…totally trademark St James move! 1mo
CoffeeNBooks I agree that the man in the woods is most likely connected to what we read in this section. I think maybe he got nervous when Alex returned on leave that time, thinking Alex would figure it out, and that's what caused the man to make a move to get rid of Frances, who knew that some of her sketches were missing. And I definitely think Frances gave the sketch book to Jo. 1mo
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vlwelser @Sargar114 💯 it's St James so just roll with it. I'm a little tiny bit excited to finish. 1mo
Karisa @Sargar114 That‘s the way my brain has been putting it together too. Got to have just a touch of the super natural in there! 👻 1mo
julieclair I agree that Frances is the one who gave the sketchbook to Jo. As for the rest, I give up. I'm so confused my head is exploding. 😂🤯 1mo
BookwormAHN I'm really looking forward to the wrap up at this point. 1mo
kspenmoll Frances did leave the notebook to Jo, maybe to help resolve her murder. Is the man in the woods the spy? Maybe so. 1mo
DebinHawaii Yep, agree with everything said here—I can‘t wait to see how it all plays out. 1mo
AmyG I just want to finish to find out what hopenned. If not for the huddy read, I‘d have read this in a day or two. 1mo
julieclair @AmyG Me too! It took so much willpower not to read ahead! 1mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick I think Frances left the book & that Princer is a dog from behind but other than that, I don't know what to think. 1mo
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

The Staffrons

Chaperone Jo 🤣🤦🏻‍♀️

What did you think of the engagement of Martin and Cora?

And WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE?! What are they hiding? Or is it just a family with a daughter to marry?

Sargar114 It seemed like both families had two “undesirable” candidates. Martin with his war injuries and Cora brash and not terribly attractive. It seemed to work out but I didn‘t get any nefarious vibes. 1mo
5feet.of.fury I liked Cora so far! I hope it‘s nothing nefarious! I thought she was very sweet to Marin and Jo 1mo
vlwelser Do you always post this "late" or am I being impatient? I was about to check on you. I'll answer the actual discussion question in a bit.... ❤ 1mo
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Librarybelle I agree with @Sargar114 …I didn‘t really think anything nefarious about the engagement, just two young people who have some less than desired characteristics, or at least less than desired in the upper class. 1mo
CoffeeNBooks I agree with others- I think it was just a convenient match for two families that hadn't yet found matches for them. 1mo
CoffeeNBooks @5feet.of.fury I agree- Cora seems like a good person! 1mo
TheBookHippie @vlwelser NO I‘m usually hours earlier 🤣🤣 hot date til 330 am with Mr BookHippie. On our patio. 🤣 A bit of “hair of the dog” needed this am … (edited) 1mo
vlwelser ❤👆 1mo
vlwelser This arrangement seems either convenient or a money thing. I do like Cora so far. 1mo
julieclair The engagement made me sad. The way Cora and Martin both seemed totally fine with "settling" for each other, in a marriage of convenience arranged by their parents. Cora seems like a nice person, and I think Martin is too. (Or at least I hope he is... I'm still wondering about him...) 1mo
BookwormAHN I agree, I think it's more of a convenient match for her. Not too sure about her parents. I mean who says marry this sick guy and have a kid with him. Are they having money trouble? 1mo
kspenmoll Cora & Martin both seem accepting of their situation, and it seems to work. 1mo
DebinHawaii I agree, sad for them but it doesn‘t seem like anything more than fulfilling family “obligations.” And I like both Martin & Cora so I hope they are not involved in anything underhanded. 1mo
AmyG @BookwormAHN I thought the same thing. Are these people hving money issues and want to make sure their daughter is always taken care of? I think that generation, “upper crust”, matchmaked a bit. Alot of snobbery going on. 1mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick I like Cora well enough and I didn't get the feeling any shenanigans will be involved. I think Martin has a shallow prospect pool and I think the Staffords are new money, so perhaps old money is out and new money is harder to come by. Martin & Cora seem to get along and that might be more than many can ask for in that time period. 1mo
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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🤫🤐🤫🤐🤫🤐🤫 #SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

See you SUNDAY….

🫣🤯

KristiAhlers Yes! I can‘t wait to discuss 2mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick So I am waiting for my British Book Boyfriend Inspector Merriken to pop up again (unlikely). Also, if you rearrange Alex Manders you get Sex And Realm and clearly I've got nothing! 🤣🤣🤣 2mo
TheBookHippie @Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣 RIGHT?! Where is Merriken ? 2mo
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kspenmoll Christine, both my son & husband have Covid. Idid the reading, love the book & hope to join in. 💕 2mo
TheBookHippie @kspenmoll oh honey!!!!! I am so sorry. Sending healing vibes and so much love and light. 2mo
Karisa @kspenmoll Just getting over it myself. Even being vaccinated, it was one of the worst colds I‘ve ever had! My daughter has it now but seems to be even milder than mine. Hope your guys are ok. ((Hugs)) 1mo
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Sargar114
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James

🤐🤐🤐🤯🤯🤯 #sundaybuddyread

TheBookHippie 🤯🤐🤫 2mo
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

Loving it!!! No clue what‘s going on but loving it.

This one is a bit different and I am enjoying it thoroughly!

See you next week!!!

Sargar114 I‘m really loving seeing her writing evolve over this genre. This one may be her best yet (of this era). 2mo
TheBookHippie @Sargar114 I‘m really enjoying it!!! 2mo
Kimberlone I forgot you were starting this week. I need to find a copy and catch up! 2mo
BookwormAHN This one is becoming a new favorite. 2mo
CoffeeNBooks I'm thoroughly enjoying this one so far! 2mo
37 likes5 comments
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

Art. Selling it or wife shopping? Or?

Jos dreams what do you make of them ?

Jos anger at Alex.

So, a girl for Martin has arrived….

So much going on!!!

Thoughts?

Sargar114 Dottie tried to be practical. I think she sees Martin is not long for this world and trying to secure her family‘s fortune. Not the most loving character but in a weird way I can understand that. So much going on and I‘m loving it (as usual with St James). (edited) 2mo
Librarybelle There is so much going on, building upon each other. Loving the ride so far! 2mo
vlwelser Just going to roll with it and not think too hard about this. 😂 2mo
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TheBookHippie @Librarybelle I just love it! 2mo
BookwormAHN @vlwelser My plans too. 2mo
kspenmoll Agree w @Sargar114 re art, Dottie, Martin‘s marriage prospects. Still need more to go@in! 2mo
julieclair Jo's dreams have me totally perplexed. Although, there's a lot about this book that has me totally perplexed! 😂 2mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick I doubt Dottie is doing anything without the underlying task of finding a grandbaby incubator. Poor Martin! She may not be beautiful, but I hope she is nice. 2mo
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

A beautiful Jewish widow named Judith left the besieged city in pretended flight and foretold to Holofernes that he would be victorious. Invited into his tent, she cut off his head as he lay in drunken sleep and brought it in a bag to Bethulia. A Jewish victory over the leaderless Assyrian forces followed.

Why was this in Jo‘s room?!?!?!

Sargar114 What?! I totally missed this!!! 2mo
Librarybelle No clue! 2mo
vlwelser I totally missed this too. 2mo
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vlwelser But I love the Klimt painting. 2mo
TheBookHippie @vlwelser me too I love Klimt ! 2mo
vlwelser Have you seen them in person? I was lucky enough to be introduced to Klimt as a teenager, part of a class, on a field trip in Vienna. (There's no way to make that seem less spoiled but it was part of study abroad in college.) But there are random ones other places. 2mo
TheBookHippie @vlwelser alas no. But it is a dream of mine. 2mo
vlwelser It's all gold leaf. It doesn't photograph very well. The actual paintings are beyond stunning. 2mo
vlwelser In case you needed an excuse to travel to Vienna or something 😂 2mo
TheBookHippie @vlwelser it‘s on my bucket list! I think the same is true of most art. It just doesn‘t photograph true. 2mo
AmyG I think Dottie is somehow involved in illegal art fraud….getting possibly stolen art out of Europe. 2mo
TheBookHippie @AmyG Somethimg odd that‘s for sure! Art is always mysterious in the selling and collecting. 2mo
AmyG @TheBookHippie it‘s before WWII but is she sellimg confiscated art from Jews??? 2mo
TheBookHippie @AmyG I think that started in 1923.. so egads…. It was so under the radar then -… kinda like now people should see shit coming but they don‘t think it‘ll effect them so they choose to not see. 2mo
BookwormAHN I wondered if it wasn't a test to see if she would steal it. 2mo
TheBookHippie @BookwormAHN or a warning 😳😬 2mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick I wonder if it alluded to illicit activity on Dottie's behalf with the art or if it's foreshadowing something that Jo may have to behead somebody to reign victorious over the evil spirits at Wych Elm. 2mo
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

Robert
Well
He‘s a snake
What‘s his story you think?

Sargar114 Apparently he‘s the actual CREEP! I wonder if he has more to do with Frances‘s death? 2mo
Librarybelle He‘s very slimy! Ugh! 2mo
vlwelser So gross. And the wife seems to know. 2mo
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Sargar114 @vlwelser good point. I initially thought her earlier warning was a stay away from my husband but maybe it was more to protect Jo from him. 2mo
AmyG I think he is a creep but not sure he is the bad guy in this story. (edited) 2mo
vlwelser @Sargar114 definitely warning Jo about the creepy husband. She doesn't seem to care what he's up to in general. 2mo
BookwormAHN I wonder if he's just a jerk or really dangerous. 2mo
TheBookHippie @BookwormAHN either a psychotic or a philander ? Or both 😫 or neither, it is Simone. 2mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick Richard is straight up predatory. He doesn't hide his disdain for his own family, but I also wonder if he hates the house because he recognizes that people act differently there. 2mo
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

Morphine addiction and Martin. Not unusual for the situation back then.

Martin-
Thoughts of him now as we know more?

Sargar114 I‘m glad he turned out less creepy; but I still don‘t entirely trust him. It‘s good for Jo to have an ally, but I wonder if he‘s also more involved in either of these mysteries or getting Jo to let go of her search for Alex. 2mo
Librarybelle Martin still has secrets, and he definitely seems haunted. Whether or not it‘s from his time in the war, what happens in the house, or both, I guess we‘ll find out. 2mo
vlwelser Still not sure about this dude. 2mo
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AmyG I am not sure about him either @vlwelser but he just seems like a tortured guy, living with his injuries from the war. He seems decent, but who knows? 2mo
BookwormAHN I think it's sad that he seems so reigned to be married, bred and then die. 2mo
kspenmoll I think he is a decent man who struggles with addiction- happened back then as people did not understand morphine‘s addictive qualities. 2mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick Morphine addiction aside, I'm not getting creepy vibes from him anymore. I can't say we're totally in the clear though. Maybe Fran or the house can possess him while under the influence or the morphine might end up being influential to the plot at some point, like helping Jo cross over temporarily. 2mo
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

Colonel Mabry?! One in the same! His son was in the hospital!!!
Was he lying about Alex?

Sargar114 I definitely think he knows more than he‘s letting on! I wonder if he came to find out what Jo knows about Alex? I LOVED the call back! (There was also a mention about a girl in the pond when they were talking about the various ghosts Francis was seeing) 2mo
Librarybelle Colonel Mabry knows more than he has said! And that was awesome with the connection to a prior book…totally caught that! 2mo
vlwelser I love that she throws in these Easter eggs. I guess that's a video game term. Is there a name for this in literature? 2mo
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TheBookHippie @vlwelser probably but I call it Easter egg too! 🤣 2mo
Sargar114 @Librarybelle I had posted a spoiler comment about it cause I was so excited 😆 @vlwelser @TheBookHippie I think Easter egg works! 2mo
AmyG I love the connection, too. Mabry seems to know more than he reveals. 2mo
BookwormAHN He definitely knows more. 2mo
CoffeeNBooks I definitely think Mabry knows more than he's saying, and I think Jo is smart to pretend like she hasn't started to realize that things don't add up. 2mo
kspenmoll I agree with @CoffeeNBooks . I am missing some of the call backs… 2mo
julieclair Since this is the first SSJ book I have ever read, I am missing ALL of the callbacks, lol! 2mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick I missed the girl in the water but totally whooped at another returning character, even if he wasn't the nicest guy. I trust him as far as I can throw him and my arm strength is absolute garbage. 2mo
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

The roof…
What did you think of Jo contemplating?

Sargar114 It seems St James lead females are always very sensitive to ghosts and the other side. I‘m not sure what was happening here but it seems she has a connection with Frances. 2mo
Librarybelle I agree with @Sargar114 that she seems to have a connection with Frances. Maybe Jo was trying to puzzle things out on the roof, to kind of experience what Frances may have before she fell. Admittedly, my palms got a little sweaty while reading this piece. 😂 2mo
TheBookHippie @Librarybelle me too I loathe heights ! 2mo
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AmyG @Sargar114 Yes. I think Francis is trying to get Jo to investigate her death. 2mo
TheBookHippie @AmyG @Sargar114 I agree I think she was pushed! 2mo
BookwormAHN I definitely don't think it was an accident. 2mo
CoffeeNBooks @Librarybelle I agree that it seems that Jo was out there trying to figure it out from Frances' perspective. 2mo
kspenmoll Yes Joe was putting yourself in Francis shoes so to speak to the point that it was rather scary I wasn‘t sure what she was going to do 2mo
julieclair I just kept telling myself that she definitely wouldn't jump, because then we'd have no protagonist! 😂 2mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick Yes! ⬆️ @julieclair I, too, had that thought. I suppose we COULD finish out the book with ghost Jo, but that's unlikely. Whether it's Fran, the house, or other, I think it was influencing Jo to intrigue her enough to keep looking for answers. 2mo
julieclair @Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick Ooohhh... Ghost Jo.... Now that would be a twist indeed! 2mo
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

Alex camera
How do you like her first pictures?!
Would you run?
“I see you”
Who messed up Jos room?
Frances, what is she trying to say?

Side note: cameras are in most of these books the author must love them 📷

Sargar114 It does seem that there are always some kind of instrument to try and find ghosts in her books. It‘s always interesting how in her books, the ghosts are always real but always the least evil part of it. I think it‘s possible Frances is actually making herself known to Jo because of this. Im looking forward to this mystery becoming unraveled. May be a favorite of this time period. 2mo
Librarybelle Another mystery to solve - who is Hans Faber??? I‘m thinking Frances is leaving the clues for Jo. And yes, it seems like cameras are the way for the ghosts to communicate with the protagonists in St James‘ books. 2mo
vlwelser What if the camera was either hiding a message or it's a prop for his German alter ego? I apparently cannot help speculating. 2mo
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TheBookHippie @vlwelser ???? Is this his spy name?! 🤣🤷🏻‍♀️ 2mo
vlwelser That's kind of where my brain went with it. Did I make your head explode? 2mo
Sargar114 @Librarybelle that is the question I most want answered!!! @TheBookHippie @vlwelser spy name??!! How exciting!!!! I love it! 2mo
AmyG Is The Alex she married actually Hans Faber? 2mo
BookwormAHN I was just waiting for lost film or pictures to show up. 2mo
CoffeeNBooks @AmyG This is what I've been trying to wrap my brain around- maybe the Alex Manders she married isn't really Alex Manders, but Hans Faber. If I'm remembering correctly, Alex wasn't in any of the pictures at Wych Elm. That would also explain the passport picture in his file. But did Martin look at the photo? Wouldn't he have noticed if it wasn't really Alex? 2mo
kspenmoll I wondered the same. Or was Alex Hans When in Germany, but Alex in England? Not sure where this is going but it‘s certainly adds to the ambience and mystery 2mo
julieclair @BookwormAHN Yes! I was so disappointed when the camera turned out to be empty. 2mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick I like that these books have characters that are using the new technology in their ghost-hunting efforts. I think there's a definite Alex/Hans connection, but I'm not sure if it's an alias/partner/truly secondhand find. 2mo
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

Jo is seeing Frances. Why?
What was the deal with the leaves?

Fran wouldn‘t do that…kill herself ..

Is Martin seeing and hearing it too?

Frances all her visions
She was doing better, well and then …she died?
AND ALEX was there?!?! WHAT?!

What is the true story?!

I‘m so intrigued!!

Sargar114 This one is pretty wild. I love the gothic feel of it and that leads me to think it has something to do with the house. No idea what the leaves have to do with anything but they‘re also on the cover of the book so seems important. I‘m just going for the ride on this one as so much is going on that I can‘t even begin to try and figure it out. 2mo
Librarybelle I think this one is one of more spookier ones we have read by St James. It‘s a definite gothic flavor to the story. I finished this section last night and almost regretted reading it at night! 😂 2mo
vlwelser This part is pretty weird. It feels like a secondary plot line almost. Like she added a ghost story because that's what her readers expect. But we shall see. We're only halfway in. 2mo
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5feet.of.fury Yeah, I haven‘t decided is someone is messing with Jo, if she‘s going crazy, if Fran is visiting her to warn her of something. I don‘t think Alex had anything to do with Fran‘s death but maybe the man in the woods? 2mo
Sargar114 @vlwelser I find St James always makes a point to have a ghost and show that the ghost is never as bad as some of the actual people in the book 2mo
AmyG I wonder if Francis is trying to get Jo to help her….solve her possible murder? I don‘t think Francis killed herself. 2mo
BookwormAHN Or maybe Frances is trying to warn her that her family is nuts and she should run 😸 2mo
CoffeeNBooks @AmyG That's what I think, too! 2mo
kspenmoll It feels like Frances is reaching thru the “door” to have Jo help her- no one seems to think Frances killed herself. 2mo
julieclair @AmyG @kspenmoll @CoffeeNBooks I agree. Frances is trying to help Jo figure out who murdered her. And I think the leaves are a clue that the woods, and what happened there, are significant in solving the mystery. 2mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick Perhaps the leaves are a little something Fran uses to show Jo that she is tangible & not losing her mind. I think Fran wants to show Jo that she knows. If my theory that Alex killed Fran is right, maybe she wants Jo to see it "first hand". 2mo
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

Jo can‘t get windows pension without death certificate. Awful.
Martin means to fix it…

Why doesn‘t Jo try? Does the government know something ? Or do they truly leave all these women without help?!

Sargar114 Is it really surprising that a government doesn‘t care about women? I get the feeling she‘s holding on to the idea that he‘s still alive. If she gets the death certificate then she would admit that he died. 2mo
Librarybelle I‘m not surprised about the way Alex‘s missing in action is being treated by the government. There‘s something more there that we need to find out. As for Jo, I agree with @Sargar114 - it‘s almost like she is holding out hope. 2mo
vlwelser 💯 @Sargar114 @Librarybelle she seems to know he's still alive. 2mo
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TheBookHippie @Sargar114 🤣🤣🤣🤣 no women are property not people 🤦🏻‍♀️ clearly. 2mo
Karisa @Sargar114 Yep, death certificate would squash all chances of Alex still being out there in Jo‘s mind. Would the pension even be enough to support her and her mother‘s care? it makes a lot of sense that Jo wants to pay more for a nicer hospital. Wondering is this before socialized medical system there?) 2mo
5feet.of.fury The bureaucracy is very believable to me. 2mo
5feet.of.fury I think she doesn‘t want to confront it, that it would add a finality to it that Jo isn‘t ready for. Dottie is so nosey I feel like it would have come out that she wasn‘t getting benefits sooner though. 2mo
AmyG I am with @Librarybelle that something fishy is going on. And Jo seems to just be holding out hope that he comes back. Maybe he does….who knows? 2mo
BookwormAHN That is weird. I can understand him MIA for awhile but not this long. 2mo
kspenmoll I also think Jo does not want to finally say Alex died- applying for benefits would do just that. On some level since he/parachute went missing, she is holding out that he will return. 2mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick I wonder if there's a limit to how long someone is MIA before being assumed dead. At that time, it was still rare for a woman to successfully have her own job, home, etc so to just leave her high and dry is rather effed up. Disappointing but not surprising. I too think she doesn't pursue it harder to keep a thread of hope that he'll return to her. 2mo
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

Alex so upset about Franny…
Why?

Sargar114 We‘ve learned that he at the very least found her. But there have been hints that maybe he was more involved in her death. I‘m not so sure about that but still will be interested in how it all ties together. 2mo
Librarybelle There‘s way more to this story! 2mo
vlwelser How/why would he be involved in her death? I'm so confused about this. But the thing I have learned about Simone is that I don't need to figure it out. She's going to tell me what the deal is eventually. 2mo
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Karisa Yeah, it‘s too coincidental for Alex to have been at Wych Elm when Frances and mystery man in the woods died. That guy has to be important too. If he were from the area that close knit village would have known who the dead man was. @vlwelser Agreed! St. James will tell us, there will be no way we could have known, and yet it will make perfect sense. How does she do that? 😂 2mo
Sargar114 @Karisa @vlwelser That‘s why we love her!!!! I bet Alex has more to do with the mystery man in the woods 🤷🏼‍♀️ 2mo
AmyG Is Alex the dead mystery man in the woods? What is going on?????? 2mo
vlwelser @Sargar114 yes! It seems like the dead guy in the woods may have been part of his mission. No idea why the Frances thing happened then too. 2mo
Sargar114 @AmyG that would be a twist!!!! But wouldn‘t the family recognize him, but maybe they‘re part of the cover up… 2mo
TheBookHippie @Karisa I have no idea how she weaves these stories! I never figure it all out 🤣 til the end 🤣 2mo
TheBookHippie @CoffeeNBooks I feel like I‘m smarter than this but nope! 🤣 2mo
BookwormAHN I think someone in the family knows who the mystery man was . 2mo
kspenmoll @Karisa Agree with all you said regarding Alex being home when Frances died. Mysterious. But we will find out all the connections/reasons eventually. 2mo
Karisa @AmyG 🤯omg! I didn‘t consider that… but the file said he‘d returned to France after the mystery stop at Wych Elm. They would cover for a spy though. 2mo
Karisa @TheBookHippie I know right?! Does SSJ go into the whole thing with a master plan or just write from start and figure it out as she‘s goes? 2mo
TheBookHippie @Karisa does she have a chart?! 2mo
julieclair @AmyG My bet is that the mystery man in the woods is Hans Faber. 2mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick I am wondering if Fran saw Alex kill the man in the woods and he therefore had to kill her to keep her from blowing his mission. Did I miss mention of looks of the dead man? Was it an Alex doppelganger? Someone surely would've suspected foul play and recognized him if there was, right? Perhaps dead man was in pursuit of something/one at Wych Elm and Alex had to stop him. 2mo
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

“You weren‘t together that long…”

What does Jo really know? What pieces are we missing?

Sargar114 To me this is the more interesting mystery than what happened to Frances 😂 2mo
Librarybelle Agreed, @Sargar114 ! There seems to be something major being covered up in France, but also it makes me wonder if the cover up there is also somehow related to what happened to Frances. We learned some things in this reading section that makes me wonder there are way too many things unexplained. 2mo
vlwelser I love the dress in this photo. I would totally wear that. 2mo
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vlwelser I have no idea where Simone is going with this extra character that isn't present (yet?). 2mo
TheBookHippie @vlwelser I love the fashion of this era!! 2mo
Karisa When Jo was going through the file, Dottie‘s words did feel more true. Alex was home so little. Did Jo give him too much credit? He was definitely hiding thing things. I‘m still leaning towards Alex was/is a spy and maybe even a German spy (though St. James seems too much of a romantic to do that). 2mo
Sargar114 @Karisa I agree, I‘d be shocked if Alex turned out bad. Maybe a British spy currently in Germany given his roots 🤷🏼‍♀️ 2mo
AmyG @Karisa Yes….I was thinking the same. And I don‘t think the Alex Jo married-is the real Alex. The passport photo in his file? Someone replaced that photo. Inlove all the mystery. 2mo
TheBookHippie @AmyG RIGHT?! Who is he REALLY??? 2mo
BookwormAHN The passport photo was a definite red flag. So many questions. 2mo
kspenmoll @Sargar114 I was wondering to if he was in intelligence with his command of German & since he did live their awhile, must have contacts & knowledge of customs. 2mo
Karisa @kspenmoll @Sargar114 @AmyG @TheBookHippie If Jo‘s Alex isn‘t the real one, then does Dottie/Martin know the truth (or is their Alex a different one than Jo‘s)? So many possibilities… (edited) 2mo
TheBookHippie @Karisa 🤯🤯 2mo
julieclair @Karisa @kspenmoll @Sargar114 @amyg @TheBookHippie If Jo's Alex isn't the real Alex, then that would explain why he didn't invite his family to the wedding. I think Jo is actually married to Hans Faber. And maybe Hans Faber was the guy who was killed in the woods, the day Frances died... 2mo
Karisa @julieclair oooh, that could work. Hans Faber has got to be key to it all somehow. I like your hypothesis! 2mo
Sargar114 @julieclair good theory!!! 2mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick @julieclair Great theory! I'll be bummed if it's not true. 🤣 I think this fits the Jo/Alex whirlwind romance: When you're looking at the world through rose-colored glasses, those red flags just look like regular old flags. I want to hope that he's a double agent, ultimately a good Brit pretending to be German, like deep, deep undercover or something but he may have killed Hans. Or Alex is Hans. 🤯 2mo
julieclair @Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick So true about the whirlwind romance. The rose colored glasses can turn those red flags into festive banners, lol! 🚩🚩🚩🪅🪅🪅 2mo
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TheBookHippie
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#SUNDAYBUDDYREAD

Jo “I can‘t marry you…”
Martin “Thank God, I can‘t marry you either..”
Phew
Mother/Dottie intends it ..

Why???? Why would Dottie do this? Also why doesn‘t Martin care? Is he dying?

Sargar114 I really like that this got addressed right away and kinda moved on. I can‘t tell if he‘s assuming his shrapnel will ultimately kill him or if he‘s just in so much pain constantly that he‘s suicidal. 2mo
Librarybelle I was hoping that the love portion of this would not involve Jo and Martin - it just seemed really off to me. I‘m wondering if there is more to Martin‘s story, since we know how much St James loves to throw surprises into her tellings! 2mo
vlwelser I'm glad this icky plot line was quickly dismissed. I think it only exists to point out that Jo is still married and her husband might be out there somewhere. 2mo
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Karisa @Librarybelle I like that they are friends and not expected to marry too. However, as you say something still feels like it‘s waiting to be revealed with Martin. Maybe he knows more about Alex and/or Francis than he‘s telling? 🤷🏻‍♀️ @Sargar114 I‘ve been assuming he would die soon too. You‘d think if he lasted this long they‘d have gotten all the shrapnel out? But he seems to be declining. 2mo
Karisa I don‘t get Dottie‘s pressure to have marry and procreate either. He‘s obviously so unwell. I keep wanting to tell her to leave the poor guy alone. Must be something more there as (the ultra icky) Richard has alluded. 2mo
5feet.of.fury @Sargar114 that was my thought, some combination of his addiction, losing so Alex and Fran and Alex at a young age, and his injury. He seems to think he‘s not long for this world for one or all of those reasons. 2mo
Sargar114 @Karisa @Librarybelle agree, something still feels off. @vlwelser me too, there‘s enough going on in this book. Don‘t need another red herring, haha. 2mo
AmyG I agree with all of you. I didn‘t want them to marry and am glad they are friends. I think Dottie (in her way) likes Jo. Finds her loyal. So maybe that‘s why she tried to match them. But….I keep wondering if Alex is actually Alex. Who is Hans Faber???? 2mo
Karisa @AmyG oh yeah! Hans Faber 😂 sounds like Alex‘s spy alias to me! There is so much going on in this book! (edited) 2mo
TheBookHippie @Sargar114 allll the red herrings!!! 2mo
CoffeeNBooks I'm glad this got worked out quickly. I think that Martin and Jo are becoming friends, and maybe he'll help Jo figure out what happened to Alex. 2mo
BookwormAHN @AmyG @Karisa I was also starting to wonder that. 2mo
kspenmoll I agree with all- Jo & Martin are fiends & I think Martin needs that while Dottie is busy marrying him off so their family line continues. 2mo
julieclair @Karisa I don't understand Dottie's push to marry him off either. It seems cruel. And I agree... Robert has the ick-factor on steroids! 😝 2mo
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick I saw it as Dottie liking Jo will enough to keep her in the family & if Martin is weak (maybe not long for this world), marrying him off with Jo for procreation was easier than starting from scratch. I'm glad that's not the plan any longer but I do feel like it was all tidied up too quickly and there might be more to Martin. 2mo
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Sargar114
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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And we have our callback #sundaybuddyread crew!

TheBookHippie I literally YELLED!!! 🤣♥️🎉 2mo
Sargar114 @TheBookHippie me tooooooo! I love that she does this! 💜 2mo
TheBookHippie @Sargar114 me too! It‘s so fun ! 2mo
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Sargar114
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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“By the time we left Calais, I thought perhaps I hated Dottie Forsyth. “
#firstlinefridays @ShyBookOwl
#sundaybuddyread @TheBookHippie
#doublespin @TheAromaofBooks

mcctrish That‘s a great first line and I do love Simone St James 2mo
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kspenmoll
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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#sundaybuddyread this evening.

KristiAhlers You‘re set for a great evening. 2mo
kspenmoll @KristiAhlers It was, but for the fact that I sooo wanted to continue reading the book. It‘s a buddy read so I restrained myself!!! 2mo
KristiAhlers @kspenmoll I read ahead as I‘m reading the same book with you! This weekend is going to be crazy busy so I wanted to make sure I didn‘t get to far behind. Totally doesn‘t hurt that this book is awesome 2mo
kspenmoll @KristiAhlers It is awesome! I love her books! 2mo
KristiAhlers @kspenmoll me too. She‘s a new author for me. I‘ve read two of her most recent books. I‘m now a total fan of hers. 2mo
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Sargar114
Lost Among the Living | Simone St. James
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Earlier this week was catching up while waiting for a little to finish soccer practice. #sundaybuddyread #doublespin