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The broken girls
2018
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More than sixty years after one of four friends in a reputedly haunted boarding school goes missing, journalist Fiona Sheridan resolves to learn her sister's fate before a harrowing discovery is made. - (Baker & Taylor)

More than 60 years after one of four friends in a reputedly haunted boarding school goes missing, journalist Fiona Sheridan resolves to learn her sister's fate before a harrowing discovery is made. By the award-winning author of The Haunting of Maddy Clare. - (Baker & Taylor)

The “clever and wonderfully chilling” (Fiona Barton) 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... - (Penguin Putnam)

Author Biography

Simone St. James is the award-winning author of Lost Among the Living; The Other Side of Midnight; Silence for the Dead; An Inquiry into Love and Death, which was shortlisted for the Arthur Ellis Award for Best Novel from Crime Writers of Canada; and The Haunting of Maddy Clare, which won two RITA Awards from Romance Writers of America and an Arthur Ellis Award from Crime Writers of Canada. She wrote her first ghost story, about a haunted library, when she was in high school, and spent twenty years behind the scenes in the television business before leaving to write full-time. - (Penguin Putnam)

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Booklist Reviews

*Starred Review* St. James' riveting genre-blender combines a supernatural tale with intertwined mysteries from the 1950s and today. The historical story line features four girls who have been sent to Idlewild Hall, a forbidding Vermont boarding school where the education is as meager as the care. One of the four, Sonia, is particularly in need of love and attention but gets none, and her disappearance is swept under the rug as her friends' pleas for a search go unheeded. The later story takes place in 2014, when Idlewild is again central to a mystery: What exactly happened to the murdered sister of Fiona Sheridan, a journalist who sees the renovation of the school as her chance to get to the bottom of the crime. Haunting events in both eras—literally—is the malevolent spirit of Mary Hand, a terrifying figure whom the schoolgirls encounter regularly. This horror-tinged mystery is frighteningly believable, peopled with feisty characters, and features top-notch dialogue. St. James, who won the 2013 RITA Best First Book award for The Haunting of Maddy Clare (2013), might have another prizewinner on her hands. Copyright 2018 Booklist Reviews.

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