Monday, 20 March 2017

TLC Book Tours Review The Roanoke Girls, Amy Engel

About The Roanoke Girls

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Crown (March 7, 2017)
“Roanoke girls never last long around here. In the end, we either run or we die.”
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 Girlsshocks 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.
“I was immediately drawn into The Roanoke Girls, a haunting and riveting look at one family’s tangled legacy. You won’t stop reading until you’ve unraveled the darkest of Roanoke’s shocking secrets.”
– Laura McHugh, award-winning author of The Weight of Blood
“This is a poised and haunting novel, whose enchanting prose belies its dark and intense subject matter. An evocative modern take on Southern Gothic, with a compelling twist which will remain with you long after the book’s last sentence.”
– L.S. Hilton, New York Times bestselling author of Maestra
“An emotionally compelling page turner, The Roanoke Girls takes you inside the dark world of a twisted family and one woman’s fight to break free from the chains of her own history. This is family intrigue at its very best!”
– Wendy Walker, author of All Is Not Forgotten

My Thoughts:
The Roanoke girls appear to have it all, they're rich, stunningly beautiful and envied by all the townspeople. However, things are not as they seem. Over the course of the book, and as layers are sloughed away we find out what befell the girls in this family saga, and also solve the present day mystery of one missing Roanoke Girl.

Set in a fictional rural town in Kansas, 'The Roanoke Girls' is a deeply disturbing story. It is a complicated mix of sensual beauty with an underlying creepy darkness.  It's a distasteful storyline with manipulative calculating characters.

With a decades old history unfolding as the narrative moves back and forth in time, unpalatable secrets are revealed about the girls relationships within the family and with some of the townsfolk.  Engel has written a perceptively shocking, utterly compelling tale about the many affectations of love; innocent, lustful, cruel, selfish, controlling and warped.  Some of the characters were pretty unlikeable but with the progression of the storyline and revelations about the family's past, it became easier to accept, but not condone, their behaviour and treatment of others.

The interaction between the main character, Lane and 'wild boy', Cooper really resonated with me. Their relationship was electrifying and the sexual tension and pangs of lust were palpable. Allegra and Tommy's relationship couldn't have been more different with the hopelessly infatuated 'wholesome' Tommy being teased and tormented by the more predatory and sexually aware Allegra.

I loved 'The Roanoke Girls' right from the get-go.  Written in a style similar to Emma Cline's, 'The Girls' and likened to Virginia Andrews', 'The Flowers In The Attic', 'The Roanoke Girls' is a fabulous crossover debut for the YA/Adult readership.  Its a tough subject matter to write well about, but with a cracking good storyline I think Engel absolutely 'nailed it', and I cannot wait to read what she offers up next.

My Rating:

Disclaimer: I received a complementary digital advanced reading copy of 'The Roanoke Girls' by Amy Engel from the publisher and TLC Book Tours to take part in the blog tour.

Amy Engel photo credit Trish Brown Photography

About Amy Engel

AMY ENGEL is the author of the young adult series The Book of Ivy. A former criminal defense attorney, she lives in Missouri with her family. This is her first novel for adults.

Connect with Amy

Website | Facebook | Twitter




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Monday, March 20th: Fuelled by Fiction
Tuesday, March 21st: Kritter’s Ramblings
Tuesday, March 21st: SJ2B House of Books
Wednesday, March 22nd: Write Read Life
Thursday, March 23rd: Luxury Reading
Monday, March 27th: No More Grumpy Bookseller
Tuesday, March 28th: A Fantastical Librarian
Wednesday, March 29th: Snowdrop Dreams of Books
Wednesday, March 29th: Patricia’s Wisdom

1 comment:

Heather J @ TLC Book Tours said...

This story is so dark and disturbing, but it is also like a train wreck - you just can't look away.

Thanks for your great review for the tour!