The Twisted Thread

The Twisted Thread

by Charlotte Bacon

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Overview

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.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781401341503
Publisher: Hachette Books
Publication date: 06/14/2011
Pages: 384
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 7.84(h) x 0.98(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

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 1997.

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Twisted Thread 3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 45 reviews.
Stephanie_Ward More than 1 year ago
Summary: 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. Review: This book has a good plot and the storyline is solid. It’s been done before, but not tired out. It is full of intrigue, mystery, complicated social themes, and likeable characters. The novel itself had a lot of potential, but seemed to go the safe route with predictable outcomes and twists you could see coming a mile away. The author spent too much time trying to build the history of the school and the backgrounds of the character; it became almost a boring interlude to the main story. There was the expected conflict between the privileged youth from the boarding school and the regular people in the town below. Overall, Bacon’s writing was solid and she had a good narrative. The characters were likeable and dealt with real-life problems and situations. It also gave good insight into the life of privileged teens and what goes on behind the closed doors of a prestigious boarding school. This book didn’t blow me away, but it was a good book and is worth reading. Disclosure: I received my copy of this book for free in return for an honest review.
suballa on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Who killed Claire Harkness, and where is her baby? When Armitage Academy¿s most popular senior is found dead in her dorm room, everyone is surprised to learn that she had recently given birth. Well, almost everyone is surprised. It turns out that Claire had confided in a few students, but no one seems to have any idea who would want her dead and who would take her baby. Madeline Christopher, an intern at Armitage, feels awful that she hadn¿t realized Claire was pregnant. After all, Madeline lived in the same building as Claire. Where reputation means everything, a scandal like this could be devastating to the prestigious school and everyone involved. Local police detective, and Armitage alumnus, Matt Corelli and Madeline team up to uncover the events that led to Claire¿s death and discover that she wasn¿t the only one keeping secrets. This is not your typical mystery, but a good one just the same. The characters are fully realized, with personalities across the spectrum.
Beecharmer on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Madeline Christopher is a new teacher at Armitage, a privileged private school. One morning she arrives back at the school from her morning jog to find hysterical girls, police and an ambulance. Beautiful, aloof Claire Harkness was found dead in her room. Secrets start to unravel and it comes out that Claire had just delivered a baby and it was missing. Being the youngest teacher, some of the girls confide in Madeline and she works with a cop named Matt who used to attend Armitage. I enjoyed this book although it wasn't a real "page turner".
nlsobon on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Armitage Academy is a school for the wealthy; a school where reputation is everything. It is also a school full of secrets. The story revolves around the death of Claire Harkness and her missing baby. While I did enjoy ¿The Twisted Thread¿, I found myself often struggling to get through it. One issue was that the story switches point of views so frequently that after a while, it becomes tiring. Claire Harkness, Armitage Academy¿s most popular senior, managed to hide a pregnancy, delivering a baby just days before she was found murdered in her dorm ¿ the infant missing. It¿s an interesting premise, but its drawn out far too long. Would I recommend it? I would, actually. It¿s not a bad book what-so-ever, and as I¿ve stated I did like it, but it¿s not a book for everyone.
RidgewayGirl on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is, on the surface, a murder mystery set at a prestigious boarding school. Told from several viewpoints, from a steady maintenance man to the cop who was once a student at the school, the story ties together to paint a picture of privilege and loneliness, of arrogance and desperation.Claire Harkness symbolized everything about Armitage Academy; beautiful and clever, she's won early admittance to an Ivy League college. She's the leader of a secretive group of popular, wealthy girls and her parents live in New York and Paris. But Claire is found dead in her dorm room one morning, possibly murdered and having just given birth, to a baby that is nowhere to be found.Madeline has been hired to teach English at Armitage for a year, a temporary placement in a life she doesn't have completely under control. When Claire is found murdered in the dorm that she helps supervise, Madeline is driven to find out what happened and her youth and inexperience allow her to approach the closed world of teen-agers with absent parents and too much money.This book reminds me of Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn and The Crazy School by Cornelia Read. It has an uncertain protagonist who is nonetheless willing to confront the past and practices that others would rather keep secret. The plot was well designed, and the characters revealed more and more nuance and depth as the story progressed. My one caveat is that the book lasted just a little too long. it's not necessary to tie off each thread so tidily, and in doing so, the book lost the tension of the earlier chapters. Still, Charlotte Bacon is an author well worth reading and I look forward to her next book.
hellonicole on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
While the concept was interesting enough, the constant info-dumps made it really hard for me to get into The Twisted Thread. I had to reread parts just to try and absorb all the characters that were being thrown at me at once, and by the time I had done that I just couldn't care about any of them enough to get too enthused with the story. It really felt to me that a lot could have been pared out of the story without actually losing much, and would have probably sped the story up a bit as well.
KatharineClifton on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I wanted to like this book. The premise is interesting and unique. The writing, however, is not. First and foremost, there is just too much (too much!!) here. There are characters who don't matter, who do nothing at all to drive the story forward. This whole book is an example of why an author needs to "show, don't tell" because pretty much all this author does is tell. Info dump, after info dump after info dump. It's maddening. And frankly, disinteresting. I had to slog through this one. I wanted to abandon it, but the truth is, there is a story here. A good one. It just isn't told in a plausible manner. To quote the character Madeline, "she couldn't weave the events into a coherent narrative."I think the author must be a better writer than this because throughout the book there are wonderful descriptive phrases, some truly great writing sprinkled in among the forced and stilted narrative. But she overloads the story with a ridiculous and unnecessary amount of detail. Detail about uninteresting, unimportant things. Plus there are examples of people behaving in a way that quite simply goes against human nature (a single example being a die-hard Red Sox fan suddenly deciding to root for the Cubs because the Sox have won a world series and are no longer underdogs). And I had to take umbrage with the recent college-grad/teacher Madeline knowing that Claire had recently had a baby because she saw the dead girl's nipples and mentally compared them with her own sister's post-partum nipples. Seriously? The description of the sister would lead me to believe that she never would have attempted to breastfeed, much less allow her younger sister to see her nipples. And the fact that the author, through many different characters, kept hammering on how unbelievable it was that an Armitage grad would be a police officer was truly unnecessary and annoying.This book disappointed me. I was excited to get it, I thought the premise was a good one. There is a story here. A good one. And if this book was edited, cut down by more than half, it might be able to shine through. Get rid of the extraneous detail. Stop manufacturing situations just to use the clever bon mot you came up with. Take out the characters who are wholly unrelated to the mystery.Sadly, I cannot recommend this book.
acook on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I received this book as part of LT Early Reader¿s Program.I¿m not sure this book is sure what it wants to be: is it a mystery? is it a romance? is it a Secret History wannabe?It tells the story of a murder at an exclusively private boarding school for high schoolers. The murder victim (or was it an accident?), had just given birth, and the baby is missing.What has happened? Murder? Accicent? Who was the father? Where is the baby? The story is told from the point-of-view of an intern teacher, new to the school that year, unfamiliar with all its traditions.I¿m very lukewarm about the book, and probably would have set it aside had it not been for my commitment to LT. I found the mystery laid out without much suspense, the romance disappointing since our heroine did end up with the right guy, but not until after having a full-fledged affair with the lesser, albeit somewhat appealing, man, and the mysterious ring of students at the school supposedly creating havoc at the school unconvincing.The subplots were not woven into the main plot very well, it was hard to understand even why they were there. And when the killer was revealed, unless I missed it, it was someone who had never even been mentioned heretofore. A duce-ex-machina ending. Don¿t like it.The title refers to a device the ring of student use to swear each other to secrecy.
dablackwood on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A decent effort but I think this book could use some editing. I don't think a mystery should be boring and often when I was reading I found my mind wandering. I'm sure it is hard to build suspense, but I believe the authot isn't there yet. I liked the main story of the boarding school and the death of one of the students, but some of the peripheral stuff seemed superfluous.
DMO on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
In some ways, this book about the death of a privileged teenager at an elite private school is unlike other books that take place in such settings. It has a shifting point of view that moves between the various adults who are connected in some way to the mystery, and there are very, very few scenes that involve the students at the school. In general I liked the book, but I did find a few parts a bit slow. The relationship between Madeline and Fred, for instance, was unnecessary and slowed things down, and the climactic scene in the chapel at the end was a bit much, but in general I very much liked these characters.
bookaholicgirl on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Claire Harkness is found dead in her dorm room at the prestigious boarding school, Armitage Academy. It becomes apparent that she has recently given birth and that her son is missing. Madeline Christopher, a new teacher at Armitage, becomes involved in the investigation and realizes how little she actually knows about her students.I found this book very enoyable but also a bit predictable. The characters were very likable but I felt that there was just a bit missing from each of them and would have liked to know them a bit more. The author's writing style kept the story interesting and also helped it move along. At the end of the book, I found myself wondering if the author would write another mystery featuring Madeline and the two detectives featured in the book.
BookDivasReads on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
It's often fascinating reading about the rich, as many of us aspire to having more and we just presume that the rich are so much better off in their elite society. A little slice of life with insight into the elite presented in THE TWISTED THREAD begs to differ. We see into the world of privileged children attending a mythical boarding school, Armitage Academy, in New England. The reader is introduced to Claire Harkness and she remains a character throughout the book even though she has been murdered. The question is why was she murdered and where is her baby? Hard to believe that someone can hide a pregnancy especially at a boarding school, but we only have to read the headlines to know that this happens more often than not in the teenage population. Claire isn't exactly ashamed of her pregnancy, she actually wants to use it to try and humiliate the school and perhaps her parents. Madeline Christopher is a recent college graduate and a new teacher and therefore considered inconsequential by many of the staff (and students) at Armitage. She, like Claire, is a product of divorced parents of wealth, but she survives and seems to have a strong sense or morality, ethics and responsibility that many of her students are lacking. It is Madeline that discerns immediately that Claire must have recently given birth after seeing the dead body and questions another student about the infant's whereabouts. This begins a massive search by local police and the FBI on and around the campus of these privileged youth. Madeline also embarks on an amateur investigation into what made Claire tick and what has happened. She finds out that there are often societies within societies as she uncovers the "Reign of Terror" group, and that appearances aren't always what they seem. Although initially started as a support group for the female students at Armitage, it has become much more over the years. Does this group play a role in Claire's death? As Madeline uncovers more about the "reign" and their terror tactics, including getting a scholarship student to leave, she finds herself the target of the remaining reign members. She isn't intimidated by their tactics but is initially shocked when she finds out that her sister was a member of this elitist group. What does shock her is the notion these girls have that they can do anything and get away with it simply as a result of their wealth.The murder brings up many flaws in the history of Armitage. For example, Fred Naylor, art teacher, is the grandson of a previous headmaster. He must deal with the emotions raised when he finds out his grandfather wasn't the morally upstanding man he thought when he finds out about a scandal during his grandfather's tenure. That scandal mirrors the current in that it resulted in a student's death, but that death was simply brushed away and erased from the school's history . . . or was it? Matt Corelli is a detective assigned to the case and an Armitage graduate. He suffered during his time at Armitage and is hesitant to return. He was falsely accused of cheating when it was his roommate that stole his work. The roommate was wealthy and Matt was a scholarship student, guess who the faculty believed? Will his prejudices against the school overshadow his investigation?This is more than just a "whodunit" mystery based at an elite boarding school. Ms. Bacon's introduces us to characters than run the socioeconomic gamut but they all play pivotal roles in this story. What do the school handyman, his mother and his mothers caregiver have in common with the school and the murder victim? At first glance it appears that the answer is nothing, but we find out more about lives transecting as we read more and more, not only about Madeline, Matt and Fred, but also about Claire. We ultimately learn what made Claire who she was before her death and that she was more than the cool, calm, collected teenager she presented. Madeline learns that she isn't the weaker sibling nor is she the lowl
silenceiseverything on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I have been trying to finish The Twisted Thread for about two weeks. After reading 150 pages and practically dreading picking it back up, I decided to just leave it. While I thought that it had an intriguing premise, I didn't find it captivating. I was 150 pages in and still the book failed to hook me.One of my main issues with the book was the shifting narrative. I felt that it was too much and it took me a while to figure out who was narrating and who they were in the overall story. Maybe if I had finished the book than I would've seen how they all tied in to the story. But I didn't, so I failed to grasp why I was reading the thoughts of someone who I didn't think was crucial.So, overall, I don't recommend The Twisted Thread. I felt that it wasn't gripping enough and that it took too long to get interesting if it even did.
skstiles612 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Armitage Academy, a prep school is the type of place most people would like to send their children, or is it?The story starts off with Madeline, an intern at the school going out for a run. As she returns to the school to begin her day she is met with police and an ambulance. Claire Harkness, the most poupular senior is found dead by another student. To make matters worse they find out that she had been pregnant and had the baby. Several of the girls had known about it and taken a vow of silence. They provided help to her and the baby. Now that Claire is dead, they realize the baby is dead. The intern pairs up with Matt Corelli, a former student of the school to figure out who killed Claire and where the baby is. What Madeline learns is that there is a secret society and Claire was the head of it. That is why the girls helped hide her pregnancy. The question is, why didn¿t she tell anyone, as in an adult about her pregnancy or the birth of the child? The motives and secrets become clearer with each twist.The premise was excellent. The story told from different points of view did not work as well for me as in some books. All in all I would recommend this as a nice weekend or summer read. This is not a book I would probably pick up and read again. That saddens me because the premise gave me so much hope and it fell a little short.
BLBera on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Set in a posh New England boarding school. I liked the character of Madeline, an intern at the school. A great quote from the novel about teaching: "This is what teachers do. Carry around dog-eared copies of books they love, underlined and scrawled in as if they held all the meaning in the world. Then we try to shake out whatever is magical or wondrous in them and deposit it like pirate gold in front of all those minds around the table." I find this inspiring as I prepare my fall syllabi.
bookmagic on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Armitage Academy is the most exclusive school in Massachusetts. But when the popular and beautiful Claire Harkness is found dead, everything changes, especially when it is discovered that she had recently given birth to a baby boy, who is nowhere to be found. Some of Claire's close friends knew she was pregnant but not who the father was. But none of the teachers or staff knew. Madeline Christopher is an intern teacher in the English department and resided in the same dorm as Claire. Madeline starts getting information from the other girls and tries to discover who killed Claire. She discovers many secrets and traditions of this school and how things work for the wealthy and privileged.This story is told alternately by three narrators; Madeline, Matt, a former Armitage alum now working as a local cop, and Jim, one of the maintenance men. This had a lot of potential but did not live up to it. I don't mind different narrators but Jim and his story was fairly irrelevant and took up too much of the story. Though this was a mystery, Claire's murder seemed to be secondary all of the different characters that overcrowded this novel. There was another small mystery added that was used to develop one of the characters but was again not relevant to the plot. The author seemed to want to focus on those that run and work at the Academy and only sporadically giving clues to the murder.It was an easy and quick read though it could have been cut down. The lack of focus really effected by enjoyment of the book. There were good parts and I liked Madeline and Matt but I just could not engage with the story as I would have liked. Some editing could have helped but still would not have saved this book.Some reviews have compared this novel to Donna Tartt's The Secret History but I saw almost no resemblance except the setting.my rating 2/5
resugo on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is not the kind of book I normally read. It wasn't particularly fast paced, it wasn't focused on just a few characters, and it wasn't told from a teen POV. It was an adult murder mystery. But for all of that, I enjoyed it anyway. This is a very dense book. Dense as in the paragraphs are long and packed with detailed information. There is also A LOT of info told about each character--present, past, and hinting into the future--that didn't necessary have anything to do with the murder. It was not a quick read for me. I figured out who the murderer was a little over half way through. Maybe not the reason behind the murder, that was a surprise, but the who-done-it aspect of it. And the reveal wasn't dramatic at all. It was sort of just there, a bit of information tucked in with all the other bits of information. But that was okay. Sometimes drama at the end of a book is annoying, so it was refreshing when that wasn't the case, like in this book. And the wind down after the reveal went on for a while, tying up all the ends of lives of all the characters we .But, really, I did enjoy the story. The dynamics of the boarding school, teachers and students, and the schools relations with the town, was fascinating. As each piece of the puzzle was revealed, I loved how the thread got more twisted. I thought the plot was very well thought out and laid down in the novel. And I liked the two main characters. I liked how the book ended.
tymfos on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book was slow to pull me in, but indeed it did eventually grab me. It's a subtle kind of mystery/thriller which explores the dark places in the lives and relationships of people at an prestigious academy. In some ways, it was very good. It kept my attention, and the author created enough threads to make me wonder, and keep me reading to see how it all fit together.My main complaint is that the author was less than subtle in dealing with the issues of snobbery and elitism. She SHOWED the perils and evils of elitism quite effectively, but was not content with that; she hammered the point home with heavy-handed TELLING through her characters' speeches and inner dialogues. It got a bit tiring. "Show, don't tell," is a writer's mantra Bacon needs to take to heart. Indeed, there were a number of aspects where there was too much "telling" to tie it together. But to her credit, she SHOWED that some "elite" characters may be more multi-dimensional than others would expect.This was a decent literary mystery that unfolded with enough surprises to keep me guessing just about to the end. But I didn't love it.
gchristianson on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Tired of reading romance novels? Looking for a change of pace? Give this novel a try! This book is more than just a "who dun it" mystery. While it does have a well planned plot, it also is a commentary on the privilege of the wealthy and provides a glimpse into their world. It also has it's share of "mean girls", quirky adults and self involved parents. Charlotte Bacon has an elegant writing style that is easy to read. She uses beautiful imagery that brings each scene to life. It's the perfect read for those lazy summer afternoons!My only criticism is that the story seemed to slow down in the middle of the book. Without spoiling the story and giving too much away, I felt that certain parts of the plot should have resulted in an urgency to solve this mystery and I just didn't feel that from the characters that were investigating the death of Claire. Towards the end of the book, the pace picked up again. I thought I had the ending all figured out, but watch out for a few surprises! Thanks to Voice Publishers for allowing me to read and review this novel.
FinnTiger on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed The Twisted Thread. There is a long history of "boarding school books," where terrible things happen in bucolic environments, where a deserving poor student is thrown in among arrogant, wealthy peers. The Twisted Thread twists the genre a bit, telling the story from the point of view of the adults in the story, who know enough of life to know that it does not begin and end at Armitage, the elite school that is the setting for the book. I was pretty much hooked from the beginning. Madeleine, the narrator we are clearly supposed to identify with, is the "outsider" in this case, the new teacher ("intern") among Armitage lifers. Through her and other outsiders (the police officer, the facilities manager, and the art teacher, though he has a long history with the school) we slowly see the mystery of who killed the beautiful Claire Harkness, a popular but cold girl who had a bright, expertly plotted future ahead of her. I'd recommend this to any fans of books like Academy X, Prep, or classics like A Separate Peace, as well as anyone who enjoys slowly unfolding mystery novels.
readingthruthenight on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
he Short of ItBeautiful wealthy girls can also die. The Long of ItClaire is gorgeous. One of those drop-dead blondes that seem to have it all: looks, smarts, MONEY. And she attends one of the most prestigious private schools, Armtiage Academy; at least she did, until she was murdered that is. The story opens with Claire dead, her newborn baby missing, and a faculty that didn¿t even know she was preggers. Enter, Matt, alumni who went the path of blue-collar worker, ie. town cop. Along with his partner Vernon, he attempts to intermingle with the closed mouth students and staff. And speaking of staff, Madeline, the faculty member that least fits in with the status quo begins doing her own investigating. She stumbles upon this secret society that¿s nothing short of a bunch of rich girls bullying the underprivileged. Perhaps the girls in her dorm are upset for more reasons than just a death. The Thoughts about ItI seriously thought this would be a book that I would run into the blogging world and shout from the top of webspaces READ THIS READ THIS NOW. Unfortunately. It. Is. Not. This book humbled me. I had to realize that just because a book might have all of the elements in a story that grabs me (in this case, a private academy, secret society, and a mysterious death), it doesn¿t mean that I¿m going to like it. So what were the flaws? Okay, this is difficult for me to actually point the finger at. I suppose part of the flaw was my expectations. When I read the summary, my mind associated it wit Arcadia Falls by Carol Goodman that I freakin¿ adored. So, already, it is competing in my head with a previous love. This never comes out good. Also, you know how in elementary literature courses, they always talk about character-driven novels compared to plot-driven? Well, I s¿ppose this one was plot-driven, except I found it to be all over the place. And the plot was really there just to carry the author¿s agenda along¿which was quite obvious ¿rich people get away with murder¿ (hahahaha, yes I realize what I just did there!). At best, the book was trying to do what Tana French does in her novels ¿ fall into this category of literary fiction meets mystery genre. French made it work. I didn¿t really feel that here. But you know, read it. Prove me wrong.
ccourtland on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The Twisted Thread offers promising snippets for a murder mystery wrought with scandal but fails to serve up the excitement and suspense that most readers seek from the genre. Barrages of characters are introduced in the beginning and keep on coming. Details are given in a redundant fashion, which only adds to the confusion of mentally managing characters. Each character comes with a background and appears to have equal weight and importance, which can be a unique writing structure, but in this case had me wondering whose story was it anyways? There is supposed to be a shift in voice when a different character¿s (perspective) is given, but I did not `hear¿ enough deflection in tone to buy it. I was not convinced that any person besides the narrator (author) was telling or recanting the story. Although, there are sympathetic hints and moments, I¿m afraid my opinion about the characters that formed during the initial introduction did not change by the end. The stereotypical description was obvious and over-played and because of this, I found the story slow and blasé.
Kskye on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The Twisted Thread was like reading the AMC's The Killing without commercial interruptions or cliff hangers. Oh, and not as well written. Instead of constantly asking who killed Rosie Larsen, it was who killed Claire Harkness and to make it a bit different, who took her baby. And add to that how did she manage to hide her pregnancy in the first place?Armitage Academy is one of those rich prestigious high schools every parent wants to send their kid to but could never afford. Even down to an elite secret society that must have been the prequel to Yale's Skull and Bones. Except for in Armitage it's called "The Reign of Terror" complete with a Robespierre figure-head. When your mascot, so to speak, is known for cutting off heads and leaving cryptic messages like, "you have the right to use terror to crush the enemies of liberty," things can't be all that good.So was it "The Reign" who killed her? Perhaps one of her teachers? Maybe her tool of a boyfriend? I was constantly guessing. The book is split into four different perspectives--there is Madeline Christopher (intern), Fred Naylor (art teacher), Matt Corelli (cop/ ex Armitage student), and Jim French (ground crew worker). I'm usually not a big fan of perspective switching, but it was okay I guess. It worked.That being said, it took me nine chapters to get into this book (there are twenty-four chapters and an epilogue,) and even then the author's writing style was very verbose. Sometimes I felt like I was reading a string of nothing but adjectives. Despite that the book was an okay attempt at a whodunit that reminded me of The Killing, but not as interesting...maybe it's more like a game of Clue except the reader is also wondering who took Claire's baby. The Twisted Thread comes out June 14th.
ThePaxtonian on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Not a bad read. Some characters were well developed and interesting; others were not. The story itself was intriguing enough to keep me interested to the end. Loved the descriptions of prep school life -- oh, how the other half lives! This is the type of book I like to pick up at the library for a dreary winter's afternoon, but not a book I'd buy at the bookstore to keep in my library.
TheTwoDs on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Intrigued by the publisher's comparison to Donna Tartt's The Secret History, I prepared myself for a letdown and that's what I received. The remote connection between The Twisted Thread and The Secret History is that they both involve murder at a prestigious New England school. But where Donna Tartt takes her novel into the exploration of the human capacity for evil with believable, captivating characters, Charlotte Bacon delivers a run-of-the-mill murder mystery complete with stale writing, endless exposition and a killer the reader can see from miles away. Two fatal flaws in mysteries for me are a suspect whom the author thinks she's cleverly hidden but I'm able to point out from the moment he is introduced and a too-tidy of an ending complete with reality-challenging information dump by the detective where everything is revealed. This book commits both of those crimes. It's a shame because the story is somewhat interesting, a student at a prep school having been murdered and the baby she recently gave birth to (though no one at the school knew she was pregnant) gone missing.