Thursday, March 15, 2018

The Broken Girls by Simone St. James

Genre:  Adult, Mystery, Thriller
Source:  I received a copy from Netgalley to facilitate my review. The opinions expressed here are my own.

I am an eclectic reader. There are several things that will draw me to a book. First and foremost is if a book is a mystery. Check, this one is. Are there supernatural undertones? Check again.  This book also has multiple points of view and we bounce back and forth between time periods. 

We are taken into 1950 and a place called Idlewild Hall in Vermont. Idlewild is a boarding school. This seems to be a school where girls are place when their parents don’t want them around. Considering the time period these girls were shipped off or hidden away so they would not be an embarrassment for their parents.  Four of the girls become very close friends,  and then one mysteriously disappears. 
We are then transported to 2014.  The thread that connects the past to the present is the school. In the 1950s when one of the girls goes missing the head of the school figures she has run away. This just shows how little the school administration feels about their charges.  Her friends don’t believe that she ran away.  They think she was murdered.
In the present time Fiona Sheridan, a journalist gets involved when someone decides to reopen the school. She is going to do a story on the place. Her connection? Twenty years before, her sister’s murdered body was found on the school’s grounds. Her sister’s boyfriend has been in prison all these years, convicted of her murder. Fiona never believed that he killed her. She is determined to find out what really happened. You just know that this is not a good idea.
If I had to choose one of the time periods as my favorite it would definitely be the past. The author made me care so much about the girls that are considered broken.  Oh, did I mention the school has a ghost called Mary Hand? What is her backstory? This is what adds that exceptional creep factor. For some reason I seem to start these books at night and then can’t put them down until I finished them. The problem with this one is that is was just creepy enough to scare me whenever I heard a noise.   It has been a while since I’ve read a book that has so captivated me. I have not read any of her other works but that will definitely change.  There is something about the Gothic period set against the present time that seems to work.  I can’t recommend this book enough.  You definitely must read this book. I just wouldn’t recommend you read it at night or when it is stormy out, unless you want to have your pants scared off.

This book comes out March 20th. Be prepared.

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