When All the Girls Are Sleeping

Delacorte. Jul. 2021. 448p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780593180792.
Gr 8 Up–Arsenault immediately sets the tone of her novel within the first few pages. Readers are transported into the world of an all-girls prep school known for its ghosts. Haley is dealing with the aftermath of the death of her ex-best friend Taylor. She has a mixed feelings regarding Taylor, as they had gone their separate ways only weeks before she allegedly killed herself. Strange things have happened at Windham-Farnswood Academy throughout its history; therefore Haley is not entirely sure that Taylor actually died by suicide. Instead she believes that something much more sinister may be at play. Legend has it, there is a ghost that haunts the halls of the academy, and Haley is starting to think that this ghost—the Winter Girl—may have something to do with Taylor’s accident. The author cleverly builds a chilling ghost story with just the right amount of tension to keep readers guessing. Her story also adeptly illustrates the turbulent relationships that exist between adolescent girls. Readers are immersed in her constant inner grappling over her prior friendship with Taylor and how complicated that relationship had been with Taylor before and after death. Teens will be spellbound until the very end.
VERDICT A good purchase for where YA mysteries, suspense, or thrillers are popular.

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