My rating: 3 of 5 stars
The story is written from two points of view: that of a journalist and that of a girl, Louisa, who went missing from a private school many years ago. It also skips back and forth in time between the present and the period leading up to Louisa’s disappearance. This approach sometimes works well but is often confusing. I found myself re-reading several passages to understand where I was in the story.
Louisa is a misfit. She wins a scholarship to Temple House School, so she is from a very different background to the majority of the pupils who come from rich families. That resonates with me as it mirrors experiences in my own school life. She soon befriends Victoria, another girl who doesn’t fit the establishment. Both girls, enjoy their art classes and have crushes on their art teacher, the only male member of staff amongst a coven of nuns, Mr Lavelle.
My favourite character in the whole book is Helen, the red-headed, sinister head girl. She was well developed in this story and I feel that the author could write a whole new book with Helen as the leading character.
The pace was very slow and there was just a bit too much description and filler, so much so that I often found myself skipping a couple of pages, feeling that I had missed nothing.
This is a fairly good debut novel. I am sure that Rachel Donohue has much more to offer and I look forward to her next book.