Hey bookworms!! It’s been a long time since I’ve done a book review and I have a few titles that await their reviews. I had the pleasure of receiving an advance copy of The Furies by Katie Lowe and when I saw it on an ad on a Shelf Awareness email, I had to have it. Few weeks later and i got it in the mail.
Note: I will try my best to keep this spoiler free but I will tag any spoilers
- Title: The Furies
- Author: Katie Lowe
- Rating: ☆☆.75/5
- Publication Date: 8 October 2019
- Genre: Young Adult Thriller, Fiction
- Trigger Warnings: Rape, Drug Abuse, Alcoholism, Gorey Descriptions (Murder, etc.)
- Pre-Order here
Description (taken from Goodreads):
In 1998, a sixteen-year-old girl is found dead. She’s posed on a swing on her boarding school’s property, dressed all in white, with no known cause of death. Whispers and rumors swirl, with no answers. But there are a few who know what happened; there is one girl who will never forget. One year earlier: a new student, Violet, steps on the campus of Elm Hollow Academy, an all-girl’s boarding school on the outskirts of a sleepy coastal town. This is her fresh start, her chance to begin again in the wake of tragedy, leave her demons behind. Bright but a little strange, uncertain and desperate to fit in, she soon finds herself invited to an advanced study group, led by her alluring and mysterious art teacher, Annabel. There, with three other girls–Alex, Grace, and Robin–the five of them delve into the school’s long-buried grim history: of Greek and Celtic legends; of the school founder’s “academic” interest in the occult; of gruesome 17th century witch trials. Annabel does her best to convince the girls that her classes aren’t related to ancient rites and rituals, and that they are just history and mythology. But the more she tries to warn the girls off the topic, the more they drawn to it, and the possibility that they can harness magic for themselves. Violet quickly finds herself wrapped up in this heady new world of lawless power–except she is needled by the disappearance of a former member of the group, one with whom Violet shares an uncanny resemblance. As her friends’ actions take a turn for the darker and spiral out of control, she begins to wonder who she can trust, all the while becoming more deeply entangled. How far will these young girls go to protect one another…or to destroy one another?
Ok so right off the bat it sounds promising. It has a good premise and it genuinely sounds like it will be a spooky book just in time for Halloween. I did enjoy the concept of it and that’s mainly the reason why I rounded up to a 3-star rating. To me this sounded sounded something similar to The Craft, great film about teenage girls dabbling in witchcraft and lure the new girl in, and that’s what drew me in and I was curious to see how the author reinterpreted this and set some high expectations.
I really enjoyed the history created around the school about how it was tied to the town’s witch trials in the 1800s and the mysterious deaths that were tied to the founder of the boarding school. However there were slightly more bad than good things about the book (in my opinion).
You tend to go in thinking it’ll center around magic but it’s not quite like that. There were times where I asked myself what exactly is going on? I thought this was about witchcraft? Sometimes it just sounded like plain murder or pure coincidence rather than the girls conjuring up some “spells” or just girl on girl hate times 10 (but mainly girl on girl hate). Another thing that bothered me were all the open questions it left at the end. I get the parents tend to disappear in YA novels but the way some parents were mentioned in this made it seem like it would be addressed at some point but either it’s not or it’s very vague. Or they point something suspicious about another character but then never dive into it. Which leads me to the next point. There are no consequences to the girls’ actions! NONE! Which makes it even harder to believe that there was some witchcraft involved. *SLIGHT SPOILER* Every time there was a mention of a murder and the girls were involved, I thought they left all this evidence and yet no one (not even police) caught that. How is that even believable, ESPECIALLY with all the mysterious deaths surrounding the school? *END OF SPOILER*
Another thing that irked me was the toxic friendship between the main character, Violet, and another character, Robin. It was clear that one manipulates the other and the other is so gullible that they can’t ever say “no” (which will become a problem) and eventually creates a co-dependent type of relationship. In addition, there was very little character development that would’ve made me reconsider some characters that I didn’t like from the start.
The ending is left at open ended because you still don’t know if it was girl on girl hate murder or witchcraft (which bothers the bajeezus out of me – not too fond of open ended endings period) and it leaves at a point which suggests that it’s a cycle and it’ll happen again and again.
Not sure if I would recommend this but everyone is entitled to their own opinion. There were people who enjoyed it but it wasn’t for me.