Simmering in Patagonian myth, The Tenth Girl is a gothic psychological thriller with a haunting twist.
At the very southern tip of South America looms an isolated finishing school. Legend has it that the land will curse those who settle there. But for Mavi—a bold Buenos Aires native fleeing the military regime that took her mother—it offers an escape to a new life as a young teacher to Argentina’s elite girls.
Mavi tries to embrace the strangeness of the imposing house—despite warnings not to roam at night, threats from an enigmatic young man, and rumors of mysterious Others. But one of Mavi’s ten students is missing, and when students and teachers alike begin to behave as if possessed, the forces haunting this unholy cliff will no longer be ignored.
One of these spirits holds a secret that could unravel Mavi’s existence. In order to survive she must solve a cosmic mystery—and then fight for her life.
– My Thoughts –
The Tenth Girl is described as a gothic horror set in a creepy boarding school in Patagonia. I was so looking forward to this book and it was good but failed to leave a lasting impression on me.
The story has two timelines told by two narrators; one is our young teacher Mavi and the other is a mysterious being named Angel. For Mavi, this school is her salvation as she’s got nowhere to go and even though she’s been warned of a curse on this school, she ignores it. Upon her arrival, she notices that the house..rather, the mansion is not normal. She’s advised to stay in her room at night and not to wander around the house. We’re constantly reminded of the creepiness of the mansion on top of the complete isolation and the near arctic atmosphere.
Soon, Mavi finds a student missing and strange things start happening in the house that forces Mavi to rethink the warnings she received before arriving.
I love the atmosphere the author created in this book. You’ll get chills from thinking about a dilapidated house in the middle of nowhere. Even the house, it seems, has a mind of its own..so it doesn’t matter if you’re outside or inside: You’re not safe. This is own voices for Latinx representation and includes tidbits of real-life stories from the author’s family members living under the oppressive rule in 1970’s Argentina. This book also includes mythology from an indigenous group based in modern Patagonia and it adds a horror element to the story. The twist that came in the end was so unexpected that I had to go back and re-read the last pages again. I have conflicting feelings about this twist; it was unique and asks more moral questions of us but I’m not sure how I feel about it just yet.
Overall, I would recommend this book If you want to read a young adult debut with horror elements, that has a very twisted climax. Despite my conflicted feelings about this book, I’ll definitely keep an eye on Sara Faring’s upcoming titles.
Thanks to the publisher for gifting me an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
– About the Author –
Born in Los Angeles, Sara Faring is a multi-lingual Argentine-American fascinated by literary puzzles. After working in investment banking at J.P. Morgan, she worked at Penguin Random House. She holds degrees from the University of Pennsylvania in International Studies and from the Wharton School in Business. She currently resides in New York City.
Her first novel, The Tenth Girl, will be released by Macmillan/Imprint on September 24, 2019. Sara is represented by Sarah Bedingfield at Levine Greenberg Rostan Agency.
– Giveaway –
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