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4.3 out of 5
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  • You get a real sense of dread at times

    The Burning Girls begins with Reverend Jack Brooks being assigned a new church after a devastating event at her current parish in Nottingham. She is sent to Chapel Croft, a small village in the Sussex countryside, relocating with her fifteen-year-old daughter Flo, who loves photography. When the pair arrive at their new home they learn all about the Sussex Martyrs who were killed and burnt in the town 500 years ago and about two young girls who went missing 30 years ago, never to be seen again. They also learn that the previous vicar was looking into their disappearance before he was found hanging in the church. Not long into their stay Jack and Flo both have visions of young girls as well as the smell of burning and an old exorcism kit being left for Jack. With a town full of superstitions and a strange house out in the woods in which a family just up and left in the night leaving everything behind, what have the mother and daughter let themselves in for moving to Chapel Croft? What I love about author C. J. Tudors is how down to earth and relatable her characters and settings are. They are normal places and normal people that have come across strange and unusual happenings. This is also how she writes too which makes the story so easy to read and get lost in as you are sucked into the atmospheric plot. You wouldn’t think that Jack Brooks was a Reverend from her attitude and swearing. She tries so hard not to judge people but often does. She is thrown in at the deep end with her new location especially into a town that is still mourning a loved Reverend. The story is creepy, gives you a sense of foreboding, and at times scared to turn the pages. There are little hints along the way that once you get to the last 4/5 chapters you realise were there all along and your eyes are suddenly opened to the events throughout the book. The plot is dark and twisty. The tension piles on as the book progresses. You get a real sense of dread at times as you know something is about to happen but you are not sure what – cue scary music that makes you hide behind a cushion. The book is truly spectacular and is a must-read if you love books that give you goose bumps and sleeping with one eye open!

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    9 person found this review helpful

    9 people found this review helpful

    9 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • The Devil Isn’t Always A Man

    A snap lockdown provided the perfect opportunity for a binge read. A country village, a reverend with a past, secrets, and more dead bodies than an entire season of Midsommer Murders. 500 years ago, Protestant martyrs were burned at the stake, 40 years ago, two teenage girls disappear without a trace, and, for the reason Reverend Jack Brooks was offloaded into the quiet little chapel, 2 months prior, the incumbent hanged himself. As with these small villages, everyone has a secret, loyalties run deep, and the outsiders aren’t always welcomed. While I had suspected one outcome from about halfway, it didn’t stop the enjoyment of the chase through time and place to find who killed the growing numbers of people, with bodies from 500 years ago right up until the present day. I enjoyed this read, and would recommend it, however watch out for T/W - child abuse, exorcism, claustrophobia.

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    5 person found this review helpful

    5 people found this review helpful

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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