Penny For Our Thoughts

Traveling Sisters Book Reviews. Join us on our adventures through the books we read

The Broken GirlsThe Broken Girls by Simone St. James

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I was lost in the spooky overgrown weedy brushes of the lush coulee with ten of my Traveling Sisters. This was one of our largest group reads that we have done and it was such a great, fun read. I really enjoyed discussing everyone’s thoughts on this one. Interesting with such a large group we ended up in the same coulee but were split into different sides of the coulee.

The Broken Girls is a creepy gothic, suspenseful, supernatural thriller that pulled us deep into the weedy brushes along with this interesting and entertaining story. We all settled in under the sun and soon things started to get a little dark. Our hair started rising as shivers ran up our backs as the wind howled down on us in the coulee.

Simone St. James does a good job creating an interesting atmospheric setting here with the vivid descriptions of Idlewild Hall a creepy, eerie abandoned boarding school that was like a character itself. We all enjoyed exploring the ruins along with Fiona and the eerie feeling it left us. We loved being taken into the past when the school was open to troubled girls and we meet four interesting damaged girls all with their own conflict. We learn their dark and tragic backstories and this became the favorite of the two timelines for us.

Simone St. James does a good job balancing a mystery with the supernatural that surprised some of us with how much we enjoyed the ghost story to this one. Things got really quiet amongst us as we learned of the ghost that haunts the school and at times all that could be heard was the faint sound of “I will survive” playing from the coulee.

Towards the end is where we started to split into different sides of the coulee. For some of the TS, there was just too much going on in this story for them and they felt it didn’t pull together well enough to leave them completely satisfied. For me and the rest of the TS we thought everything tied together well and we were completely satisfied in the end. We highly recommend!

Publishing Date: March 20, 2018

Thank you so much to NetGalley, Berkley Publishing Group and Simone St. James for a copy to read and review.


Norma’s Thoughts

3.5 stars!

The Broken Girls was a quick, entertaining, fast-paced and atmospheric gothic mystery novel that was an enjoyable and satisfying read. I did enjoy the dual storylines, but I thought that the past timeline was a little more interesting than the present one though.

I do love a good ghost story and the supernatural and I definitely thought the author delivered a spooky read here, but for some reason when I was reading this novel, I wasn’t overly impressed with the author’s prose though so that really affected my total enjoyment for this novel. I was the only one from the Traveling Sisters that was reading this that had a problem with that though so I still absolutely recommend this novel!

Update: Thank you so much to NetGalley, Berkley Publishing Group, and Simone St. James for also providing me with a copy of this book to read and review.

Thank you so much to Edelweiss for the advanced copy of this book!


Lindsay’s Review

4.5 stars!   I loved the gothic and mysterious feel of this gripping novel!

From page one, I was drawn into this fascinating story surrounding Idlewild Hall, an old crumbling abandoned girls boarding school.  In the 1950’s, an Idlewild Hall student disappeared, leaving for a weekend family visit, never to return. Almost fifty years later, a local girl is left dead in the open field surrounding the abandoned property of Idlewild Hall, the school having closed down decades prior.   Add into the story the numerous sightings of Mary Hand, a ghost known to haunt the property.

The novel is presented in dual timelines which flowed perfectly.  We meet four roommates living in Idlewild Hall in the 1950’s. I loved each and every one of them!   In 2014, we follow freelance journalist Fiona Sheridan on a trail to uncover long buried secrets hidden at Idlewild Hall which has now been purchased and is in the midst of being renovated.  

I found this novel to be extremely well-written, addictively suspenseful and chillingly atmospheric!  This was a Traveling Sister Read and we all enjoyed it. To find this review along with the other Traveling Sister Read reviews, please visit Norma and Brenda’s fabulous blog at:

A big thank you to Edelweiss, Berkley and Simone St. James for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review!


Kaceey’s Review

A dark, haunting novel that includes a whopper of a ghost story. When I first sought out this book I had no idea the plotline involved a supernatural element. Had I known, I probably would have just passed on it. And boy, what a shame that would’ve been. In fact, the supernatural slant ended up being my favorite part of the book!
So even if ghosts tend to scare, (like they do for me👻) don’t run! It blends perfectly into the story.

The book is split into two timelines. Past and present. Interestingly, I was completely captivated by the past timeline and left wanting more. Versus the present storyline, that I found more difficult to stay connected to and felt it just didn’t mesh with the feel of the rest of the book.

Overall I found it to an enjoyable read and would recommend!

Thank you to Edelweiss for an ARC to review.


3 thoughts on “The Broken Girls by Simone St James @simone_stjames @BerkleyPub #travelingsistersread #bookreview

  1. janb37 says:

    Great reviews ladies! I enjoyed reading this with you even if we ended up in slightly different coulees 😊


  2. Dr. Stacey L. Camp says:

    Lovely review, ladies. I love gothic mysteries 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, Stacey! I’m thinking you would really enjoy this one! 🙂


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