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The Broken Girls by Simone St. James – Book Review

Goodreads Synopsis:
A suspense novel from the award-winning author of The Haunting of Maddy Clare…
Vermont, 1950. There’s a place for the girls whom no one wants–the troublemakers, the illegitimate, the too smart for their own good. It’s called Idlewild Hall. And in the small town where it’s located, there are rumors that the boarding school is haunted. Four roommates bond over their whispered fears, their budding friendship blossoming–until one of them mysteriously disappears. . . .
Vermont, 2014. As much as she’s tried, journalist Fiona Sheridan cannot stop revisiting the events surrounding her older sister’s death. Twenty years ago, her body was found lying in the overgrown fields near the ruins of Idlewild Hall. And though her sister’s boyfriend was tried and convicted of murder, Fiona can’t shake the suspicion that something was never right about the case.
When Fiona discovers that Idlewild Hall is being restored by an anonymous benefactor, she decides to write a story about it. But a shocking discovery during the renovations will link the loss of her sister to secrets that were meant to stay hidden in the past–and a voice that won’t be silenced. . . .

Eerily chilling, utterly captivating, The Broken Girls is (yet another) a book that I now regret leaving on the shelf for several months.

Mary Hand, Mary Hand
Dead and buried under land

The story oscillates between 1950 and 2014 with the stories of 4 girls in a boarding school for misfits and the story of a journalist that can’t shake the feeling that the investigation of her sister’s murder isn’t complete. As she’s investigating, she stumbles upon an unsolved mystery and an unexplainable occurrence that she needs to resolve.

She’ll say she wants to be your friend
Do not let her in again

Side note: Is there anything creepier than a ghost with a nursery rhyme? I’ll answer for you: absolutely not. Example : Mary Shaw from Dead Silence.  While the movie itself didn’t creep me out terribly, that rhyme haunts my nightmares… now, it seems to be joined by one Mary Hand.

It’s very rare for me to actually enjoy a paranormal thriller because usually they’re too over the top, too Hollywood. This one actually seemed realistic to me, a hometown legend come to life with a touch of historical fiction, a dash of horror, and even a sprinkle of romance (without making me complain that the romance was forced). Pair that with Idlewild, the boarding school for wayward girls in the 1950s, which was a character in and of itself, and you have a story that is quite different from anything I’ve ever read before. It was a combination of creepy and suspenseful, making me fearful of what’s to come while simultaneously dying to know what happens next.

Thank y’all for joining me for my #SABRBOTMathon book # 2! Stay tuned for my future literary adventures (pssst…they’ll take us to NC 😏)

Get your copy of The Broken Girls here.



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