Book Review: She Was the Quiet One by Michele Campbell

She Was the Quiet One by Michele Campbell

She Was the Quiet One

by Michele Campbell
St. Martin’s Press – July 31, 2018

For Rose Enright, enrolling in a prestigious New England boarding school is the opportunity of a lifetime. But for Rose’s vulnerable twin sister Bel, Odell Academy is a place of temptation and danger. When Bel falls in with a crowd of wild rich kids who pressure her into hazing Rose, the sisters’ relationship is shattered. Rose turns to her dorm mother, Sarah Donovan, for advice. But Bel turns to Sarah’s husband Heath, a charismatic and ambitious teacher. Is Heath trying to help Bel or take advantage of her? In a world of privilege, seduction, and manipulation, only one sister will live to tell the truth.

Rose and Bel Enright are twin sisters. After their mother dies, their grandmother becomes their guardian, and enrolls them in a prestigious boarding school. Rose is excited about the opportunity, but Bel is not looking forward to the new changes. Heath and Sarah Donovan are teachers at the school, and they have recently been promoted to a position over one of the dorms. The dorm where Rose and Bel reside. Once at the school, the sisters drift apart, and as they grow further apart, each turns to the Donovans. Rose seeks advice from Sarah. Bel looks to Heath. As things escalate between the sisters, rumors fly, and only one of them lives to tell the truth.

In the first pages of the book, we learn one of the sisters is murdered. The story then rewinds to the beginning of the school year. As the school year progresses, we discover how they adjust to their new environment, and what leads to the death of one sister. The boarding school atmosphere presents both sides of the student body, the academic-focused students and the wilder partying students. The sisters are on opposite sides.

The story is told with flashbacks and from the multiple viewpoints of Rose, Bel, and Sarah. Rose is focused and goal oriented. Bel is a rebel and a dreamer. Sarah is reserved and trying to be supportive of her ambitious husband. With two teenagers and one adult voice, this reads as a young adult novel.

Secrets and gossip fuel this dark and twisty tale. Family drama, scandal, and suspense.

I received a free eARC of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

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