The Roanoke girls by Amy Engel


“Roanoke girls never last long around here. In the end, we either run or we die”.

Well, where do you begin with this book?? I flew through the story in 1 sitting so it definitely grabs your attention and keeps it right up until the end of the book.
I wasn’t expecting it to be incest that was the fatal flaw to the Roanoke girls but it was made fairly obvious early on which i think was a smart move by the author as then it gives the reader the option to keep reading or to walk away from the book. It is a fairly taboo subject and can be uncomfortable reading for some.
It made me think of Flowers in the Attic slightly but I’ve not read that for years!
This book makes my family feel like the Waltons from Little House on the Prairie in comparison to this family!
For such a hard topic this has been written in such a brilliant way that makes it a gripping read without being to stomach churning or shocking.
The story revolves around Roanoke, a large mansion in Kansas where the Roanoke girls have lived and died or from where they have fled. The story moves between ‘Then’ when Lane, just 16, is sent there to live with her grandparents after her mother’s suicide; and ‘Now’ when Lane who ran away after one summer there, returns after 10 years following the disappearance of her cousin Allegra.
It also has chapters written in the voices of the previous Roanoke girls which adds extra layers to the darker side of what takes place within the family.
The writing is so compelling that it draws you deeper into the heart of this family and the mystery of missing girl Allegra.
With Allegra gone, Lane is now the only Roanoke girl left, Is she doomed to the same fate as the girls that came before her?
Beautifully written about such a controversial topic, you know what has been happening in the family but without the gruesome ugly details, extreme in parts, though never graphic and it is definitely going to be a book that you remember for a long time.
Not a book for everyone but i would recommend this book highly, Amy Engel is definitely an author to keep an eye on as her style of writing is superb.
Congratulations Amy on such a good book.

This book can be purchased from

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s