The Roanoke Girls
Author: Amy Engel
Published on: 7 March 2017
Genre: Adult, Fiction, Thriller, Mystery
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Lane Roanoke is fifteen when she comes to live with her maternal grandparents and fireball cousin, Allegra, at the Roanoke family estate in rural Osage Flats, Kansas, following the suicide of her mother. Lane knows little of her mother’s family, other than the fact that her mother ran away years before and cut off all contact with her parents. Allegra, abandoned by her own mother at birth and raised by her grandparents, introduces Lane to small-town life and the benefits of being one of the rich and beautiful Roanoke girls. But there is darkness at the heart of the Roanoke family, and when Lane discovers its insidious pull she has no choice but to run, as far and as fast as she can.
Eleven years later, Lane is scraping by in Los Angeles when her grandfather calls with the news that Allegra has gone missing. “Come home,” he beckons. Unable to resist his pleas, Lane returns to Osage Flats, determined to find her cousin and assuage her own guilt at having left Allegra behind all those years ago. Her return might mean a second chance with Cooper, the boyfriend whom she loved and destroyed that fateful summer. But it also means facing the terrible secret that made her flee, one she may not be strong enough to run from again.
As it weaves between the summer of Lane’s first arrival and the summer of her return, The Roanoke Girls shocks and tantalizes, twisting its way through revelation after mesmerizing revelation, exploring the secrets families keep and the fierce and terrible love that both binds them together and rips them apart.
This is a DNF (did not finish) review for a reason I will share soon.
The synopsis got me intrigued, and I was really excited to start reading this novel as the mystery element seemed to be just right up my alley. The writing in this novel was actually really good. The world building and character development were well crafted and executed. The story was told mainly from Lane’s point of view and occasionally from other Roanoke girls’ point of view. Lane’s point of view switched from the past to present time in different chapters. It was easy to follow the flow of the story despite having changing points of view and time periods.
However, I began to feel uncomfortable after 50 pages into the novel as it was starting to get rather disturbing. I persevered on and had to put the book down about 100 pages into the novel. I simply couldn’t bring myself to continue on as it was getting way too dark and upsetting for me. Even though the secret of the Roanoke family wasn’t revealed in the first 100 pages of the novel (for obvious reason – suspense), I was able to put two to two together and made a sound guess.
Thus, I ‘DNF’ this novel. As such, and in all fairness, it is not appropriate for me to give the novel a rating.
Finally, I would like to thank Blogging for Books for sending me an advance copy of this novel.