Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Book Review - Arcadia Falls by Carol Goodman

March 9th 2010 by Ballantine Books (first published 2010)

(isbn13: 9780345497536)
Book was ordered through Goodreads Book Swap

From Goodreads:
Meg Rosenthal is driving toward the next chapter in her life. Winding along a wooded roadway, her car moves through a dense forest setting not unlike one in the bedtime stories Meg used to read to her daughter, Sally. But the girl riding beside Meg is a teenager now, and has exchanged the land of make-believe for an iPod and some personal space. Too much space, it seems, as the chasm between them has grown since the sudden, unexpected death of Meg’s husband.

Dire financial straits and a desire for a fresh start take Meg and Sally from a comfortable life on Long Island to a tucked-away hamlet in upstate New York: Arcadia Falls, where Meg has accepted a teaching position at a boarding school. The creaky, neglected cottage Meg and Sally are to call home feels like an ill portent of things to come, but Meg is determined to make the best of it—and to make a good impression on the school’s dean, the diminutive, elegant Ivy St. Clare.

St. Claire, however, is distracted by a shocking crisis: During Arcadia’s First Night bonfire, one of Meg’s folklore students, Isabel Cheney, plunges to her death in a campus gorge. Sheriff Callum Reade finds Isabel’s death suspicious, but then, he is a man with secrets and a dark past himself.

Meg is unnerved by Reade’s interest in the girl’s death, and as long-buried secrets emerge, she must face down her own demons and the danger threatening to envelop Sally. As the past clings tight to the present, the shadows, as if in a terrifying fairy tale, grow longer and deadlier.

In Arcadia Falls, award-winning author Carol Goodman deftly weaves a mesmerizing narrative of passion: for revenge, for art, for love.

My Thoughts:

I've been dragging my feet on writing a review for Arcadia Falls. On one hand, it was an enjoyable read for me. On the other hand, the ending aggravated me to the point that it kind of spoiled the good feeling I had while reading it. I liked the premise of the story, I found it a refreshing change from what I have been reading lately. Plus, the spooky-haunting aspect of it was enough to keep me on edge. Without spoiling the story, I will just say that the ending was too convoluted for me. A surprise ending, yes. But too much at one tiny little brain couldn't process it! LOL! I still gave it 3 stars because it is a good story, and I love Carol Goodman's writing. Check out her other novels, including The Lake Of Dead Languages....I loved that one.

Photobucket Good!

About the Author:

Carol Goodman is the author of The Lake of Dead Languages. Her work has appeared in such journals as The Greensboro Review, Literal Latt, The Midwest Quarterly, and Other Voices. After graduation from Vassar College, where she majored in Latin, she taught Latin for several years in Austin, Texas. She then received an M.F.A. in fiction from the New School University. Goodman currently teaches writing and works as a writer-in-residence for Teachers & Writers. She lives on Long Island. (from the publisher's website)"


Cath said...

I think Goodman often takes her plotlines a little too far--but I love her anyway, and now I really, really want this book!

Tales of Whimsy said...

I love that you gave an honest review and then linked to Michelle's. Awesome job!

Michelle (Red Headed Book Child) said...

Thank you so much for giving me a little shout out. Such blog love you spread!


Unknown said...

I totally know what you mean about endings. They can really spoil an otherwise wonderful read. I haven't read this particular book but I think I will put it away for a while.

Lisa said...

I have read so many books lately that were ruined by the ending. Even my hubby has complained about it in the books he's been reading. Are the editors not doing a good enough job? Are the authors not skilled enough?


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