Title: The Guineveres
Author: Sarah Domet
Publisher: Flatiron Books
Pub. Date: 4 October 2016
Genre: Lit. fiction, coming-of-age, YA
Four very different girls arrive at the Sisters of the Supreme Adoration convent school from four very different circumstances. Regardless, each have a history shadowed by loss and betrayal, a bond enhanced by also sharing a name—Guinevere. A life of denial in the convent is difficult for teenage girls, but they find ways to reap secret rewards, and in some ways the lives of these four girls are far richer than the town girls who look down on them. It is only when, during a year that strange yearnings began to take hold in the girls, four soldiers arrive in the convent sickroom and the girls find out that unintended consequences might be able to tear them apart after all.
I found the idea of this story more interesting than the actual story. In execution, it just sort of went on and on, with some parts being more interesting than others. (To be fair, the story has stuck with me even though I have read some dozen books since.) It was really a series of small peaks and then an ending that didn’t sit well with me. I don’t have to have a happy ending to satisfy me, for instance, I fell completely in love with Kazuo Ishiguro’s Never Let Me Go, which this kind-of, sort-of, reminded me of in not-completely-but-in-some-obscure-ways (not the plot or the writing, just the literary style).
Because it stuck with me, I am giving it four full stars, up from the three and ½ that I started out with.
A review copy was received from the publisher.