611eueyzcylI received a copy of this book from Netgalley/the publisher in exchange for an honest review.  The Girls in the Garden will be available on June 7th, 2016.

The Girls in the Garden is author Lisa Jewell’s latest book, and begins with the discovery of a young girl in a London park. She has been hurt, and possibly also assaulted. Who could have done this to her?

The plot shifts to “Before” the incident. Sisters Pip and Grace have just moved with their mother Clare to a new home that opens up to a private park. They meet the other families who live in the nearby houses; there are several other children around the same age as the girls, and friendships are formed.

Some of the families have lived along the park for generations, and the arrival of the new family unravels their relative complacency. Secrets are revealed as the story progresses: there was even a similar incident involving a girl in the park over twenty years ago.

The Girls in the Garden is a fascinating book. I spent the book searching for clues as to who could have hurt Grace. The book features a large ensemble cast, and several of them seem capable of having committed the crime. There are several different narrators, and this gives the reader additional perspective to the neighborhood dynamic leading up to the crime.

I would recommend The Girls in the Garden. Things do end a little too neatly without any true resolution, but this does not take away from Jewell’s cleverly rendered world and her unique characters. This was my first time reading one of Lisa Jewell’s books, and I am looking forward to reading her other books.

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