A terrible accident. A killer among friends.
A woman risking everything for answers.
Every year for a decade, five college friends spent a weekend together at the atmospheric Chateau du Cygne Noir. Then, tragedy struck.
Ten years later, Laurel Muir returns to the castle for the first time since the accident, hoping to reconnect with her friends and lay the past to rest. When a murderer attacks, it rips open old wounds and forces the women to admit there’s a killer in their midst. The remaining friends make a pact to unearth the truth, but suspicion, doubt, and old secrets threaten to tear them apart. Unsure who to trust, Laurel puts herself in harm’s way, risking it all for friendship and long-delayed justice.
This cover is one of my favorites that I’ve seen recently. In all honesty, when I saw this cover, it made me look into the book further and I was hooked. There is something intriguing and also spooky about it; it kept me wondering what was happening behind those dark windows. Once you start reading, the author doesn’t disappoint as she continues to bring the beautiful imagery to life.
Our story starts with each of the girls getting a mysterious, tangerine envelope in the mail. Laurel, Geneva, Ellie, and Dawn haven’t returned to Chateau du Cygne Noir since they were there last, when a terrible accident changed everything. But as soon as they seen the bright invitation, everything from the past comes rushing forward. Past hurts and betrayals run deep for this group.
Evangeline is the character that sort of connects everything, and everyone, together. The last weekend at the inn, someone pushed her over her balcony, leaving her paralyzed from the waist down. But no one knows who. Now, as the women reconnect, wounds that should be healed are ripped open.
The author brings her reader a diverse cast in this story and it was appreciated. Laurel has just become a judge in Colorado, Geneva is expecting her first child in Chicago, Ellie has just sent her boys off to college, and Dawn is a struggling artist. Each person has their quirks, their secret insecurities and desires.
Then we have Evangeline, who I never really knew how to feel about. When I first met her character, I admit she reminded me of someone I knew. That was a weird feeling for me but at the same time, it made the story come alive. I could align with the women and their distrust and disdain for Evangeline. I knew exactly how they felt when she would poke them, trying to provoke a reaction. She was nice, but there always seemed to an underlying maliciousness to it.
Even though we get a mystery in this story, we also see aspects of growth, and even a slight love story mixed in. There were times when the story seemed to slow down a bit and I think having the growth and love gently mix in really kept things interesting. I was invested not only in the mystery; I wanted to know what happened and how everyone resolved their issues.
If you enjoy books about friendships and the ways they can weave in and out of our lives, you’ll enjoy this book. Of course, if you love a good mystery, this book will also appeal to you. Overall, a fantastic read that I would definitely recommend.