Saturday, March 24, 2018

The Broken Girls - Book Review

Thank you to Berkley for providing a free copy of The Broken Girls.

Twenty years ago, Fiona's sister was found dead on the grounds of the abandoned girls school and Fiona has never been sure that the right person went to jail for the murder. Now, journalist Fiona is writing about the restoration of Idlewild Hall and she's on site when the body of another girl is found in the well. Fiona's story is now about much more than the restoration of a few old spooky buildings as she searches for the girl's identity, history and killer. Perhaps as she investigates, she will also find what really happened to her sister.

In 1950, four misfit girls at Idlewild Hall were put together as roommates. They've heard the rumors that the school is haunted but become more convinced as they each have experiences to confirm the presence of a ghost. They resolve to protect one another until the day one of the girls disappears.

It was fun to read another ghost story so soon. I read The Broken Girls by Simone St. James late a night after the house was quiet and the kids had gone to bed. The blend of an eerie ghost story with a contemporary crime drama was one that really did appeal at the end of the day and I felt like it worked well in this novel. St. James pulls the reader right in with freaky prologue. The setting of Idlewild Hall draws on the very unsettling nature of boarding schools and their long established function in literature as a scary place. Make that boarding school abandoned, and it's that much more spooky. St. James uses the setting and the haunting to keep her characters and the reader off balance and it works well.

The Broken Girls goes back and forth between Fiona's investigation and the girls at Idlewild. It does so seamlessly and keeps the plot lines going at a steady and dramatic pace. There is a constant threat of looming danger and it is successful for a thriller. I really enjoyed The Broken Girls. It's a quick read that I didn't want to put down once I started.

The Broken Girls by Simone St. James is published by Berkley and released on March 20, 2018.

1 comment:

Susan said...

I made the mistake of reading this one while my husband was out of town. Dumb me. I had nightmares and jumped at every sound the house made. But I couldn't help myself -- I could not put this one down. Glad you enjoyed it, too!