Review: A Lesson in Vengeance

Title: A Lesson in Vengeance
Author: Victoria Lee
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Thriller, LGBTQ
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Source: Owlcrate
Format: Hardcover
Release Date: August 3, 2021
Rating: ★★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

Felicity Morrow is back at Dalloway School.

Perched in the Catskill mountains, the centuries-old, ivy-covered campus was home until the tragic death of her girlfriend. Now, after a year away, she’s returned to graduate. She even has her old room in Godwin House, the exclusive dormitory rumored to be haunted by the spirits of five Dalloway students—girls some say were witches. The Dalloway Five all died mysteriously, one after another, right on Godwin grounds.

Witchcraft is woven into Dalloway’s history. The school doesn’t talk about it, but the students do. In secret rooms and shadowy corners, girls convene. And before her girlfriend died, Felicity was drawn to the dark. She’s determined to leave that behind her now; all Felicity wants is to focus on her senior thesis and graduate. But it’s hard when Dalloway’s occult history is everywhere. And when the new girl won’t let her forget.

It’s Ellis Haley’s first year at Dalloway, and she’s already amassed a loyal following. A prodigy novelist at seventeen, Ellis is a so-called “method writer.” She’s eccentric and brilliant, and Felicity can’t shake the pull she feels to her. So when Ellis asks Felicity for help researching the Dalloway Five for her second book, Felicity can’t say no. Given her history with the arcane, Felicity is the perfect resource.

And when history begins to repeat itself, Felicity will have to face the darkness in Dalloway–and in herself.

Review:

Felicity Morrow has returned to Dalloway School to redo her senior year, after her best friend and secret girlfriend, Alex, died the year before. Her dorm, Godwin House, is rumored to be haunted by the ghosts of five former students who died in mysterious, magical circumstances. Felicity has always been drawn to dark things, but she had to give up her magic beliefs after Alex died. Now, Ellis Haley, a writing prodigy, has moved into Godwin House to complete her senior year. Ellis needs to complete her second book, and she enlists Felicity’s help in researching the ghosts of Dalloway for her project. Felicity can’t help but be drawn to Ellis, until they both take their research too far.

I knew I would love this book as soon as I heard about it! It had a dark, isolated setting in a dormitory of a girl’s school. Their house was separated from the other dorms and close to the woods. The girls didn’t even use cell phones, despite being teenagers, so they were isolated from the rest of the world that way too.

Felicity was a very unreliable narrator, but that kept the story unpredictable. When Felicity would explain certain things or tell a story from her past, it would soon be revealed that it was untrue. Sometimes this can be frustrating in a narrator, but in this case, it made for some shocking twists throughout the story.

I highly recommend A Lesson in Vengeance!

What to read next:

S.T.A.G.S. by M.A. Bennett

Dark and Shallow Lies by Ginny Myers Sain

Have you read A Lesson in Vengeance? What did you think of it?

Author: jilljemmett

Jill lives in Toronto, Canada. She has studied English, Creative Writing, and Publishing. Jill is the creator and content producer of Jill’s Book Blog, where she has published a blog post every day for the last four years, including 5-7 book reviews a week. She can usually be found with her nose in a book.

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