Thanks to NetGalley and Tor Teen for providing an eARC in exchange for an honest review.
Release Date: October 6th, 2020
Synopsis: MADNESS, SECRETS, AND LIES
Wheeler, Arkansas, 1907
When their father descends into madness after the death of their mother, Verity Pruitt and her little sister Lilah find themselves on an orphan train to rural Arkansas.
In Wheeler, eleven-year-old Lilah is quickly adopted but seventeen-year-old Verity is not. Desperate to stay close to her sister, Verity indentures herself as a farmhand. But even charming farm boy Abel Atchley can’t completely distract her from the sense that something is not quite right in this little town. Strange local superstitions abound, especially about the eerie old well at the center of the forest. The woods play tricks, unleashing heavy fog and bone-chilling cold…and sometimes visions of things that aren’t there.
But for Verity, perhaps the most unsettling revelation of all is that her parents have a scandalous history in this very town. And as she tries to unearth the past, sinister secrets come with it—secrets that someone will go to violent lengths to protect…
A haunting tale of long-buried secrets, small-town scandal, and single-minded vengeance by talented debut novelist Sarah Goodman.
Eventide is the debut novel by Sarah Cooper, and while its slow burning suspense might not be for everyone, I thoroughly enjoyed the eerie Southern gothic theme, as well as the fascinating characters and intriguing mystery. I have to be honest and say that Verity annoyed me at first with her rather know-it-all attitude, but there’s so much more behind that initial obnoxiousness. Likewise, there’s similar complexity with all the characters, even the villain who winds up deserving of a small amount of sympathy. The mystery and how everything ultimately comes together, kept me turning the pages even though there were some slow spots. There are some reviewers who have criticized that there weren’t enough fantasy/supernatural elements until the near the end, but I actually liked how they were tantalizingly kept under the surface. Overall, Eventide is an excellent YA debut by Cooper and I unhesitatingly recommend it. I’m looking forward to seeing what she comes out with next.