The Lost Story: A Novel (Hardcover)

The Lost Story: A Novel By Meg Shaffer Cover Image
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Inspired by C. S. Lewis’s The Chronicles of Narnia, this wild and wondrous novel is a fairy tale for grown-ups who still knock on the back of wardrobes—just in case—from the author of The Wishing Game.

“This wildly imaginative book speaks to every reader who yearns for a more magical world.”—Thao Thai, author of Banyan Moon, a Today show Read with Jenna pick

As boys, best friends Jeremy Cox and Rafe Howell went missing in a vast West Virginia state forest, only to mysteriously reappear six months later with no explanation for where they’d gone or how they’d survived.

Fifteen years after their miraculous homecoming, Rafe is a reclusive artist who still bears scars inside and out but has no memory of what happened during those months. Meanwhile, Jeremy has become a famed missing persons’ investigator. With his uncanny abilities, he is the one person who can help vet tech Emilie Wendell find her sister, who vanished in the very same forest as Rafe and Jeremy.

Jeremy alone knows the fantastical truth about the disappearances, for while the rest of the world was searching for them, the two missing boys were in a magical realm filled with impossible beauty and terrible danger. He believes it is there that they will find Emilie’s sister. However, Jeremy has kept Rafe in the dark since their return for his own inscrutable reasons. But the time for burying secrets comes to an end as the quest for Emilie’s sister begins. The former lost boys must confront their shared past, no matter how traumatic the memories.

Alongside the headstrong Emilie, Rafe and Jeremy must return to the enchanted world they called home for six months—for only then can they get back everything and everyone they’ve lost.

About the Author

Meg Shaffer is a part-time creative writing instructor and a full-time MFA candidate in TV and Screenwriting at Stephens College, Columbia, Missouri. Find her online or at home watching Hitchcock films and/or writing Star Trek fan fiction when she should be doing her homework.

Praise For…


“Clever, dark, and hopeful . . . a love letter to reading and the power that childhood stories have over us long after we’ve grown up.”—V. E. Schwab, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue

“Meg Shaffer’s beautiful novel is part Willy Wonka, part magical realism, and wholly moving. It broke my heart and patched it over and reminded me that even as an adult, if you look hard enough, you can find the child still inside you.”—Jodi Picoult, New York Times bestselling co-author of Mad Honey

“Shaffer blends tragedy and triumph in a whimsical and gratifying debut. This is wish fulfillment in the best way.”Publishers Weekly, starred review

“A heartwarming, page-turning story of found family, love triumphing over indifference, and the world-changing power of a good book.”—Melissa Albert, New York Times bestselling author of The Hazel Wood

“A dreamy, inventive novel about how books can not only change lives but save them, too.”—Sarah Addison Allen, New York Times bestselling author of Other Birds

“A magical ode to storytelling, imagination, and the mystery of the creative life.”—Patti Callahan Henry, New York Times bestselling author of The Secret Book of Flora Lea

“Meg Shaffer’s debut establishes her as one of the best.”—Gwenda Bond, New York Times bestselling author of Mr. and Mrs. Witch

“A meditation on the power of hope when all else seems lost.”—Kirkus Reviews

“[The Wishing Game has] the life-changing pull of a truly good book.”—BookPage

“Magical, emotional, and charming.”—Booklist

“Shaffer tenderly portrays lost souls finding each other in this feel-good story.”—Shelf Awareness

Product Details
ISBN: 9780593598870
ISBN-10: 0593598873
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Publication Date: July 16th, 2024
Pages: 352
Language: English