All these beautiful strangers A novel

Elizabeth Klehfoth

Book - 2018

Seventeen-year-old Charlie seeks to become a member of an elite secret society at her school by playing The Game, a semester-long, high-stakes scavenger hunt that will reveal the terrible truth about her family, her school, and her own life.

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FICTION/Klehfoth Elizabet
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Subjects
Genres
Suspense fiction
Novels
Psychological fiction
Thrillers (Fiction)
Published
New York, NY : William Morrow, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers [2018]
Edition
First edition
Language
English
Physical Description
440 pages ; 24 cm
ISBN
9780062796707
0062796704
Main Author
Elizabeth Klehfoth (author)
Review by Booklist Reviews

Seventeen-year-old Charlie Calloway seems to have it all: a wealthy family, a spot in prestigious Knollwood Prep, where she is admired by one of the most popular guys in school, and now the chance at an exclusive secret society when the "A's" send her an invitation to join their initiation process. The only thing missing from Charlie's life is her mother, Grace, who mysteriously disappeared 10 years before. Although it appears that Grace abandoned her family, absconding with a small fortune from her husband's bank account, a part of Charlie always wonders: did her mom really run away, or was it something (or someone) else that caused her disappearance? This debut mystery gives readers a fun glimpse into the scandalous world of high-society boarding school and is reminiscent of Curtis Sittenfeld's Prep (2005). The plot moves back and forth between time periods and points of view, as Charlie's current experiences begin to unearth more about her mother's disappearance. Soon Charlie must choose between the expectations of her highbrow family and classmates and the truth. Copyright 2018 Booklist Reviews.

Review by Library Journal Reviews

Optioned for television by Bruna Papandrea's Made Up Stories (e.g., Big Little Lies), this white knuckler from a Glimmer Train and AWP Intro Award finalist features teenage Charlie, still haunted by her mother's disappearance when she was seven. Now a secret society at her elite New England school wants her to join their fun, but doing so entails a creepy, semester-long scavenger hunt that could wreck her life. YA crossover potential. Copyright 2018 Library Journal.

Review by Library Journal Reviews

Charlie Calloway comes from a well-to-do family with a mysterious past. Her mother vanished when Charlie was seven, and while the details are unclear, everyone—including Charlie's father—assumes Grace simply picked up and left, though Charlie has trouble believing her mother would abandon her. Ten years later, 17-year-old Charlie receives an invitation to join the A's, an exclusive and secretive club made up of popular students from her New England private school. To join this club, however, she must pass a series of questionable tests that challenge her moral compass, though Charlie's budding interest in Dalton, a club member with an unsavory reputation, keeps her motivated to succeed. Along the way, Charlie continues to hunt for answers surrounding her mother's disappearance, and while she starts to discover more about herself in the process, she stumbles upon dark secrets that hit close to home. VERDICT A worthy, page-turning debut that will keep readers guessing until the end. Readers of Liane Moriarty and psychological thrillers will not want to put this down.—David Miller, Farmville P.L., NC Copyright 2018 Library Journal.

Review by Publishers Weekly Reviews

Did Grace Fairchild simply walk away from her Cinderella life as the wife of a blueblood New York real estate billionaire—as suggested by bank surveillance footage showing her cleaning out the couple's safe deposit boxes days before she disappeared—or did something more sinister happen? A decade later, the question haunts Grace's 17-year-old daughter, Charlie, the appealingly acerbic narrator of Klehfoth's engrossing if flawed debut. Now a junior at Knollwood Augustus Prep, the New Hampshire boarding school her father attended, whip-smart Charlie is beginning the pledging process for an ultra-exclusive secret society, the A's. As the high-stakes initiation game tests Charlie's loyalties and values, she discovers some explosive family history—challenging almost everything she has grown up believing about her parents. Unfortunately, the author's plotting fails to measure up to her ingenious amateur sleuth, relying throughout on colossal coincidences and ending with a denouement that's surprising primarily for its implausibility. Still, Klehfoth's ability to draw in the reader shows that she's an author to watch. Agent: Suzanne Gluck, WME. (July) Copyright 2018 Publishers Weekly.

Review by School Library Journal Reviews

For 10 years, Charlotte "Charlie" Calloway has questioned what happened to her mother, Grace. Some say she was killed by Charlie's father, Alistair, while evidence pointed to Grace leaving him. But Charlie never really believed her mother would leave her and her younger sister, Seraphina, behind. As Charlie enters her junior year at a New England boarding school, she is invited to join the mysterious, elite group at school called the A's. She and her cousin, Leo, among others, are asked to complete morally questionable or dangerous tasks to prove their loyalty. All the while, flashbacks narrated by Alistair and Grace reveal their love story and the flaws in their marriage. Charlie's voice shines as she uncovers more and more about her own family history, with the support of family friend Greyson. The suspense is well executed. As Charlie draws closer to the truth of what happened to her mother, the reader is compelled to see how the events of the past will affect Charlie's truth today. The writing is descriptive without turning flowery or overly literary. Most of the major characters are well-rounded; only some supporting ones (like Seraphina) seem a bit flat. VERDICT Fans of thrillers will have difficulty putting down this excellently plotted, gripping novel.—Kelly Jo Lasher, Middle Township High School, Cape May Court House, NJ Copyright 2018 School Library Journal.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

Seventeen-year-old Charlie seeks to become a member of an elite secret society at her school by playing The Game, a semester-long, high-stakes scavenger hunt that will reveal the terrible truth about her family, her school, and her own life.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

While attending Knollwood, 17-year-old Charlie—to become a member of an elite, secret society—must play The Game, a semester-long, diabolical high-stakes scavenger hunt that will jeopardize everything and reveal the terrible truth about her family, her school and her own life. 50,000 first printing.

Review by Publisher Summary 3

"This is going to be big." -Entertainment Weekly'Juicy, clever, and beguiling." -Cecily von Ziegsar, author of the Gossip Girl novelsA young woman haunted by a family tragedy is caught up in a dangerous web of lies and deception involving a secret society in this highly charged, addictive psychological thriller that combines the dishy gamesmanship of Gossip Girl with the murky atmosphere of The Secret History.One summer day, Grace Fairchild, the beautiful young wife of real estate mogul Alistair Calloway, vanished from the family's lake house without a trace, leaving behind her seven-year old daughter, Charlie, and a slew of unanswered questions.Years later, seventeen-year-old Charlie still struggles with the dark legacy of her family name and the mystery surrounding her mother. Determined to finally let go of the past, she throws herself into life at Knollwood, the prestigious New England school she attends. Charlie quickly becomes friends with Knollwood's "it" crowd.Charlie has also been tapped by the A's'the school's elite secret society well known for terrorizing the faculty, administration, and their enemies. To become a member of the A's, Charlie must play The Game, a semester-long, diabolical high-stakes scavenger hunt that will jeopardize her friendships, her reputation, even her place at Knollwood.As the dark events of past and present converge, Charlie begins to fear that she may not survive the terrible truth about her family, her school, and her own life.

Review by Publisher Summary 4

"This is going to be big." -Entertainment Weekly“Juicy, clever, and beguiling." -Cecily von Ziegsar, author of the Gossip Girl novelsA young woman haunted by a family tragedy is caught up in a dangerous web of lies and deception involving a secret society in this highly charged, addictive psychological thriller that combines the dishy gamesmanship of Gossip Girl with the murky atmosphere of The Secret History.One summer day, Grace Fairchild, the beautiful young wife of real estate mogul Alistair Calloway, vanished from the family’s lake house without a trace, leaving behind her seven-year old daughter, Charlie, and a slew of unanswered questions.Years later, seventeen-year-old Charlie still struggles with the dark legacy of her family name and the mystery surrounding her mother. Determined to finally let go of the past, she throws herself into life at Knollwood, the prestigious New England school she attends. Charlie quickly becomes friends with Knollwood’s "it" crowd.Charlie has also been tapped by the A’s—the school’s elite secret society well known for terrorizing the faculty, administration, and their enemies. To become a member of the A’s, Charlie must play The Game, a semester-long, diabolical high-stakes scavenger hunt that will jeopardize her friendships, her reputation, even her place at Knollwood.As the dark events of past and present converge, Charlie begins to fear that she may not survive the terrible truth about her family, her school, and her own life.