From the author of the New York Times bestseller Wilder Girls comes a new twisty thriller about a girl whose past has always been a mystery–until she decides to return to her mother’s hometown . . . where history has a tendency to repeat itself.

Ever since Margot was born, it’s been just her and her mother. No answers to Margot’s questions about what came before. No history to hold on to. No relative to speak of. Just the two of them, stuck in their run-down apartment, struggling to get along.

But that’s not enough for Margot. She wants family. She wants a past. And she just found the key she needs to get it: A photograph, pointing her to a town called Phalene. Pointing her home. Only, when Margot gets there, it’s not what she bargained for.

Margot’s mother left for a reason. But was it to hide her past? Or was it to protect Margot from what’s still there?

The only thing Margot knows for sure is there’s poison in their family tree, and their roots are dug so deeply into Phalene that now that she’s there, she might never escape.
July 7, 2020  |  352 pages
(Rated on Jun 26, 2020)
Grade: B    (switch to numeric scale)
L/E Ratio: 50% Literature, 50% Entertainment
Writing Quality:
Low High
Low High

Low High
Movie Potential:
Low High

Low High
Sequel Potential:
Low High
Margot's life is not great. Her mother tells her nothing about her past and demands Margot always keep a candle burning no matter what. Why? Margot doesn't know, but she's determined to find out. When she goes to look for answers, her mother shuts her down completely. But is that going to stop her? Absolutely not. And that leads her to finding a phone number for a grandmother she's never met and sneaking out in the early morning to make her way to Phalene where she lives. What shes finds is n