Arcadia Falls

Arcadia Falls

Book - 2010
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There once was a girl who liked to pretend she was lost. . . .
Meg Rosenthal is driving toward the next chapter in her life. Winding along a wooded roadway, her car moves through a dense forest setting not unlike one in the bedtime stories Meg used to read to her daughter, Sally. But the girl riding beside Meg is a teenager now, and has exchanged the land of make-believe for an iPod and some personal space. Too much space, it seems, as the chasm between them has grown since the sudden, unexpected death of Meg's husband.

    Dire financial straits and a desire for a fresh start take Meg and Sally from a comfortable life on Long Island to a tucked-away hamlet in upstate New York: Arcadia Falls, where Meg has accepted a teaching position at a boarding school. The creaky, neglected cottage Meg and Sally are to call home feels like an ill portent of things to come, but Meg is determined to make the best of it-and to make a good impression on the school's dean, the diminutive, elegant Ivy St. Clare.

St. Claire, however, is distracted by a shocking crisis: During Arcadia's First Night bonfire, one of Meg's folklore students, Isabel Cheney, plunges to her death in a campus gorge. Sheriff Callum Reade finds Isabel's death suspicious, but then, he is a man with secrets and a dark past himself.

Meg is unnerved by Reade's interest in the girl's death, and as long-buried secrets emerge, she must face down her own demons and the danger threatening to envelop Sally. As the past clings tight to the present, the shadows, as if in a terrifying fairy tale, grow longer and deadlier.

In Arcadia Falls , award-winning author Carol Goodman deftly weaves a mesmerizing narrative of passion: for revenge, for art, for love.

From the Hardcover edition.
Publisher: New York : Ballantine Books, c2010.
Edition: 1st ed.
ISBN: 9780345497536
Characteristics: 355 p. ; 25 cm.


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Mar 22, 2013

It starts out with a fairy story that was written by two women decades before in a place where creativity reigned. And what captures the young Meg's imagination leads to a life long obsession with this tale. Then as an adult, life intervenes and she loses her husband and her home at the same time. She moves with her daughter to where the story began - at the school in a remote area eerily similar to the setting of the book. What they find there is a student body that is under attack from within. And the secrets that surround the fairy story seem to be coming out no matter what the cost to anyone who gets in the way. A chillingly atmospheric story that will keep the reader guessing to the very end.

Dec 01, 2010

It's hard to articulate exactly why I love this author so much. This summer/fall I read all of her novels in quick succession and I have to say there are many similarities among them. Nevertheless I devoured them all with great enjoyment. I'd say she's my new guilty pleasure author but her books are so well written I don't feel too guilty.

Apr 12, 2010

Not as enjoyable as The Lake of Dead Languages, but not as much as a carbon-copy of Donna Tartt's The Secret History, either. The story begins rather slowly but once Lily's secrets are revealed, it moves along much better and the suspense really kicks in. My main problem is with Goodman's heroines, who are very unlikeable. I plan to give The Night Villa a try but it's this author's last chance to win me over.

Apr 12, 2010

This is an entertaining book with an interesting plot, however there is a major flaw in the setting which I can only say is so unlikely it is comical. We have a private school, in upstate New York, attended by some wealthy students . This school is also situated at the edge of a gorge plunging hundreds of feet into rocks. But it is not fenced or lighted in any way. There was a death sixty years ago and another in the early chapters of the book and many close calls.The Dean says something like it would ruin the view to have a fence----Okay REALLY---Insurance-- bylaws-- concerned parents but most of all INSURANCE(unless they have a gazillion dollar liability policy). I can only stretch my imagination so far.

melwyk Mar 15, 2010

While this is a good read, it does not measure up to her previous work. Elements of fairy tales, forbidden love, and friends and foes all combine to make it a decent read -- but for fairy tale elements I preferred her earlier "The Seduction of Water".


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