Broken Girls
by St. James, Simone

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.

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.

*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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