THE ROANOKE GIRLS by Amy Engel (March 9th 2017, Hodder & Stoughton)
A gripping, provocative thriller about the twisted secrets families keep, perfect for fans of The Girls. Beautiful. Rich. Mysterious. Everyone wants to be a Roanoke girl. But you won’t when you know the truth.
Lane Roanoke is fifteen when she comes to live with her grandparents and fireball cousin at the Roanoke family’s rural estate following the suicide of her mother. Over one long, hot summer, Lane experiences the benefits of being one of the rich and beautiful Roanoke girls. But what she doesn’t know is being a Roanoke girl carries a terrible legacy: either the girls run, or they die.
For there is darkness at the heart of Roanoke, and when Lane discovers its insidious pull, she must make her choice…
So what did I think?
There’s not too much I can say about this book without giving away huge plot spoilers – but what I can talk about is how uncomfortable this book made me feel. There aren’t many books that make me cringe, nervous and uncomfortable all at the same time – especially while I’m loving it at the same time! It was EXCELLENT!!
I went into this book blind, not even really reading the blurb! I had seen the buzz on Goodreads, but the only thing I knew about Roanoke is that American Horror Story featured it in a series!! Sometimes I love going into a book without knowing too much about it.
This book was exactly what I needed after recently finishing a fast paced crime thriller. I needed to take it down a notch or two. THE ROANOKE GIRLS gave me exactly that change of pace. This book can be described as more of a slow burning mystery. There are a couple of ‘oh wow’ moments that break the flow of the story, but they are more then justified and give to the story. There is nothing in this book that I would say are ‘space fillers’. Every word is needed.
Engel’s writing kept me engaged throughout. A great balance of the ‘Then & Now’ aspect, allowing the reader to really get into the characters and develop an empathy with them. Especially Lane. I found myself really routing for her and hoping for the ‘right’ ending for her.
I’ll be keeping my eyes and ears open to see how long it takes for THE ROANOKE GIRLS to be optioned for TV/Movie. It has every potential to be as creepy on screen as it is on paper!
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