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The Twisted Threadby Charlotte Bacon
Synopses & Reviews
When beautiful but aloof Claire Harkness is found dead in her dorm room one spring morning, prestigious Armitage Academy is shaken to its core. Everyone connected to school, and to Claire, finds their lives upended, from the local police detective who has a personal history with the academy, to the various faculty and staff whose lives are immersed in the daily rituals associated with it. Everyone wants to know how Claire died, at whose hands, and more importantly, where the baby that she recently gave birth to is — a baby that almost no one, except her small innermost circle, knew she was carrying.
At the center of the investigation is Madeline Christopher, an intern in the English department who is forced to examine the nature of the relationship between the school's students and the adults meant to guide them. As the case unravels, the dark intricacies of adolescent privilege at a powerful institution are exposed, and both teachers and students emerge as suspects as the novel rushes to its thrilling conclusion.
With The Twisted Thread, Charlotte Bacon has crafted a gripping and suspenseful story in the tradition of Donna Tartt's The Secret History, one that pulls back the curtain on the lives of the young and privileged.
"At the start of Bacon's multifaceted first novel, untidy Madeline Christopher, an 'intern' English teacher at Armitage Academy, an elite New England boarding school, returns from her morning jog to learn that a student of hers, Claire Harkness, has been killed in her dorm room. Claire, who had concealed a pregnancy, had recently given birth, though there's no sign of the child. Madeline, who uncovers a malevolent clique that turns against her, shares her information with handsome detective Matt Corelli, who has his own past with the school. While suspicion swirls around Claire's boyfriend, Scotty Johnston, tension mounts between working-class staff, students, and town residents. Dropped rather than twisted plot threads and a lack of actual detection may disappoint whodunit purists, but appealing characters and the intelligent depiction of an insular community hold attention throughout. Bacon's short story collection, A Private State, won the PEN/Hemingway Award for First Fiction in 1998. (June)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
About the Author
Charlotte Bacon graduated from Harvard University and received a Master of Fine Arts degree from Columbia University. Her published books include A Private State, Lost Geography, There Is Room for You, and Split Estate. Her debut collection of stories, A Private State, won the PEN/Hemingway Award for First Fiction in 1998. Bacon lives in Maine with her husband and three children.
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