The Tenth Girl

Imprint. Sept. 2019. 464p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9781250304506.
Gr 10 Up–Faring’s impressive debut brings readers to a school for only the most elite girls in a remote corner of Argentina, where death, ghosts, and dangerous secrets lurk in the forbidden hallways at night. At the isolated and prestigious Vaccaro School, the young English teacher Mavi has found refuge from a life on the run following the disappearance of her political activist mother. In exchange for room and board, she must take on the challenge of educating privileged girls barely younger than herself, resisting her attraction to the handsome and unpredictable son of the headmaster, and secretly investigating the ancient curse that is sweeping the school in the form of a mysterious illness. Unbeknownst to her, a ghost by the name of Angel aids in her investigation of the school’s dark past and the encroaching Others—but at the Vaccaro School, no one is who they seem. An undertaking in terms of length and concept, Faring has crafted an evocative novel narrated in alternating chapters, which may prove difficult for some readers to easily and fully immerse themselves in, but is ultimately worth the time and effort.
VERDICT Recommended for older readers of prep-school stories who want to sink their teeth into something more sinister and paranormal.

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