After her mother’s suicide, fifteen year-old Lane Roanoke came to live with her grandparents and fireball cousin, Allegra, on their vast estate in rural Kansas. Lane knew little of her mother’s mysterious family, but she quickly embraced life as one of the rich and beautiful Roanoke girls. But when she discovered the dark truth at the heart of the family, she ran fast and far away.
Eleven years later, Lane is adrift in Los Angeles when her grandfather calls to tell her Allegra has gone missing. Did she run too? Or something worse? Unable to resist his pleas, Lane returns to help search, and to ease her guilt at having left Allegra behind. Her homecoming may mean a second chance with the boyfriend whose heart she broke that long ago summer. But it also means facing the devastating secret that made her flee, one she may not be strong enough to run from again.
As it weaves between Lane s first Roanoke summer and 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.
The Roanoke Girls by Amy Engel
Publication Date: March 7, 2017 by Crown Publishing
I’m not quite sure what I expected when I picked up The Roanoke Girls , but it surprised me in the best way possible. While the major cause for all the family dysfunction was shared early on, I felt that knowing the major secrets had even more of an impact on how I felt about certain characters and added to the character development, especially that of Lane and Allegra.
I LOVED Engel’s writing style. Even when tackling some very uncomfortable subject matter, her writing is beautiful and often poetic. Rather than looking for shock factor, I felt like Engel used the darker parts of the novel to deepen the reader’s connection with Lane and to further explore all the different personalities in the book. While there were plenty of things to dislike about particular characters, I still found myself completely enraptured in the storyline and dying to know where Lane would end up and what exactly happened to Allegra.
This novel is not for the faint of heart because there’s definitely a major “ick” factor to the plot that may turn off certain types of readers. However, for those looking for a slow burning psychological thriller that focuses more on characterization and lush prose than an action packed story line, The Roanoke Girls should be the next book you pick up!
I received this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for my honest review.