Girls of Brackenhill
Thomas & Mercer
November 1, 2020
ebook, paperback, hardcover, audiobook
Haunted by her sister’s disappearance, a troubled woman becomes consumed by past secrets in this gripping thriller from the New York Times bestselling author of The Vanishing Year.
When Hannah Maloney’s aunt dies in a car accident, she returns to her family’s castle in the Catskills and the epicenter of a childhood trauma: her sister’s unsolved disappearance. It’s been seventeen years, and though desperate to start a new life with her fiancé, Hannah is compelled to question the events of her last summer at Brackenhill.
When a human bone is found near the estate, Hannah is convinced it belongs to her long-lost sister. She launches her own investigation into that magical summer that ended in a nightmare. As strange happenings plague the castle, Hannah uncovers disturbing details about the past and startling realizations about her own repressed childhood memories.
Fueled by guilt over her sister’s vanishing, Hannah becomes obsessed with discovering what happened all those years ago, but by the time Hannah realizes some mysteries are best left buried, it’s too late to stop digging. Overwhelmed by what she has exposed, Hannah isn’t sure her new life can survive her old ghosts.
“Beyond a doubt truth bears the same relation to falsehood as light to darkness.” -unknown
Girls of Brackenhill by Kate Moretti is an interesting take on a psychological thriller. Girls of Brackenhill combines all the elements of classic thrillers. The storyline is full of gothic themes, as well as snapshots from the past intermixed within the present day storyline.
Hannah Maloney’s family legacy is one that is rife with tragedy and darkness. Ever since her sister disappeared, she’s been haunted by the past and the constant unknown. It is only when a bone is discovered at Brackenhill—her family’s estate—that she realizes the tenuous grasp she has on her understanding of the past, as well as her footing in the present is woefully unsteady.
Girls of Brackenhill challenged me. I never shy away from dark or twisted elements, especially those with a Happily Ever After (Romance fans, you hear me?), but this one is set firmly within the spectrum of unhealthy psychology trauma and the effects it has on family…especially when it is left unaddressed. Overall, Hannah felt like just a pawn for the story, instead of what should have been a story about her. It seemed like her character was just a way to bridge the past and the present. I think it was my dumb, sentimental heart that kept hoping for a happy ending, but this is not one of those books. Things are not tied up with a bow, and I couldn’t help but feeling like the ending was still unresolved. I think fans of dark fiction and psychological thrillers will love Kate Moretti’s latest book, but perhaps I wasn’t the right audience.
Girls of Brackenhill is set to release later this week on November 1st, so be sure to read this one when you’re ready for all of the spooky, twisted vibes.
Jes is a self-proclaimed bookworm, who recently moved from the PNW back to the Midwest. When her nose isn’t in a book, she’s spending time with her husband, two kids, and her three fur babies, or exploring the globe. She also firmly believes that you should start the day with coffee, and end the day in bed with a good book.