Cover Image: The Thirteenth Girl

The Thirteenth Girl

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Member Reviews

In her second novel, Sarah Goodwin creates another conflicted female protagonist in the literary shape of Lucy Townsend, newly pregnant and struggling from flashbacks to her traumatic childhood in a cult, followed by foster care. The novel is, in my opinion, very versatile – there are very fast-paced, suspenseful sections full of turns and twists, but also lengthy passages that could have done with a good edit, for example the lengthy passages related to the cult’s activities. Overall, however, this is a riveting read that thriller and ‘domestic noir’ fans should devour. Thank you to NetGalley and to the publishes for the complimentary ARC that allowed me to read the novel and produce this book review.
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Deeply dark with so many twists and turns, I felt the writer built the suspense well and I was engrossed till the end.
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The writing was good, if I'm honest, but the main character was annoying and I couldn't stand her. It was a bit flat and predictable.
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It isnt often that i dont finish a book but i just cant waste anymore time with this one.   It is so slow that the story is creeping along like a snail sludging through peanut butter.  The main character is whiney and dull and i can’t dredge up any sympathy or compassion for her. Its supposed to be a psychological thriller but all it does is make me angry at Lucy.    . Perhaps ita the fact i am in late stage cancer but i just cant waste time finishing this book.
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The Thirteenth Girl By Sarah Goodwin tells the story of Lucy Townsend. Lucy is a thirty-three-year-old woman, married to Marshall, a local councillor and the daughter-in-law of an MP. She was looking forward to the next phase of her life with her loving husband and a new baby. What happened next changed her life forever. The press had connected her to a cult accused of child kidnapping, fraud, prostitution and many unsolved crimes. 
This book is everything you expect from a good thriller. The suspense, excitement, apprehension, anticipation and nail-biting narrative make it a page-turner. Sarah Goodwin's first novel, Stranded, was praised highly. I do not doubt that The Thirteenth Girl will be equally celebrated. 
As the story unfolds, we learn more about Lucy and how the various characters in her past life have shaped her. I particularly liked how the author switches between her past and present when telling Lucy's story in a manner that suggests there are more surprises in store.
I recommend this book to fans of suspense novels.
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This is well written with good characters. I have enjoyed previous book by this author. However I found this one was very dark and creepy with the cult background. Unfortunately not for me.

Thanks to Netgalley and the publishers for an ARC in exchange for an honest opinion
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This is an enjoyable quick read as I pretty much finished it in one day.  I love the style of writing but overall the story just fell a bit flat for me this time as it all felt a bit too predictable and I couldn’t understand why Lucy couldn’t see it too!
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Lucy is happily married to Marshal, whose family is successful and financially powerful. Her life changes when secrets from her past emerge and she has to deal with the consequences of keeping her early life from her husband and his family. She was born into a cult and has little recollection of the colourful past with her mother who was a lead member of the cult.

When the story breaks, she determines to investigate and this is when things take a turn for the worse for her.

It’s a fast moving, action packed storyline which sometimes gets a bit incredible. However, it’s an enjoyable easy read.

Thanks to Netgalley for the opportunity to read this book.
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An intriguing idea behind the book but it fell a bit flat for me. I found it very slow and it dragged for me certainly at the start. There's a few good twists throughout but I just didn't connect to Lucy at all unfortunately. The book had potential to be a really good psychological thriller but it just didn't hit the mark for me.
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So so creepy! And such a great book with a premise that was incredibly interesting as to the 13th girl and her background. If you're looking for a great suspense novel, look no further!
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I received an arc copy of this book from Net Galley in exchange for my honest opinion of it. I just could not finish this book. The main character, Lucy, was just so annoying with no backbone at all. This book basically shows how your past will catch up with you.
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She escaped once, but they won't let her get away again... 

Lucy was born on Friday the 13th, and she was the thirteenth girl in the house. Her upbringing was dark and unconventional, but she managed to escape from the family. She was the only survivor on that horrific night, not that she can remember any of it. Her trauma is locked away tight, deep in the recesses of her mind. Twenty years later, Lucy has long since moved on and made a life for herself. She changed her name and even got married- but no one can ever know her secret. Not even her husband knows about her past. Now, Lucy is drawn back to the old house, hoping to remember what really happened all those years ago. This time, she might not make it out at all...
I was instantly hooked on this novel, and I read it in one sitting. The story took many turns that left me shocked and wanting to know more. I loved experiencing Lucy's lost memories with her as they unfolded, one by one. I listened to the audiobook as I read the eARC, and the narrator captured each character and emotional scene perfectly. I would recommend this novel to anyone who loves a twisted psychological thriller!
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I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. 

Absolutely FANTASTIC. I love a good cult book and this being told from a childs perspective really made it that little bit creepier. And the ending felt very realistic (I dont have kids so I dont know anything about the mother/baby bond) but this felt like something that would be doable.
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Lucy Townsend is the sole survivor of a horrific fire that happened twenty years ago. Now she is married to Marshal who is from a well-known family with a baby on the way. But the past doesn't want to stay buried.

The Thirteenth Girl possesses a flowing narrative and the escalating tension makes it compelling. With twists aplenty, there are also flashbacks to Lucy's former life in the mansion, a redbrick ivy-covered Manor House, told from the perspective of another child. The first part of the tale has disturbing and unsettling vibes. The second part which explains the cult in detail makes for a slower pace. I thoroughly enjoyed and appreciated the fitting ending. A good tale by Sarah Goodwin.

I received a complimentary copy of this novel at my request from Avon Books via NetGalley. This review is my own unbiased opinion.
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It is clear from the start that Lucy is a damaged person. Married, pregnant, with few close friends, news emerges that she is a survivor of a cult living in a remote Welsh mansion which burnt down in mysterious circumstances when she was a child. Attempting to both escape the public interest and to piece together her memories of past events, she finds herself in danger and facing difficult choices about her current life. Despite the compelling plot, this was a difficult read due to a lack of likeable and trustworthy characters, including Lucy herself.

With thanks to NetGalley, the author and publisher for the advance copy to read and review.
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Lucy thought she had escaped her past but little did she know that it was just waiting for her all along ready to come back and bite her with venom.  

Lucy escaped a cult when she was just seven years old.  Many years later and having made a new life for herself, the skeletons start to emerge and Lucy's life is turned upside down.  Having escaped one kind of controlling environment, Lucy swaps it for another - her husband and his parents are, in my opinion, vile creatures who continue to brow beat Lucy and blame her for what happened to her as a child and what her mother and cult did ... what the heck!!!  Who blames a 7 year old???  Like I said, vile creatures.

Anyway, what follows is the story of Lucy trying to remember her time in the cult through flashbacks, memories and dreams/nightmares but what is real and how reliable is she?  And who is doing this to her?  Lucy returns to the place of her nightmares to try and remember just what happened but she is soon in an even more terrifying nightmare which is all to real and how is she going to get out of it.

This is a book that pulls on all your emotions at once and I admit that I  wanted to physically get inside it and give Lucy's husband and parents-in-law a slap and Lucy a shake; oh my word, I was so annoyed at times that I nearly didn't finish the book it irritated me that much however, I persevered and, actually, am glad I did as the reasons she was like she was, became clear and, in the end, I was rooting for her and desperate for there to be a happy ending.  I won't give it away but I will say that it was quite satisfying albeit a little unbelievable in parts.

Overall, a good read with an interesting plot and some unexpected twists but with characters I struggled with and with a pace that started well, got a bit slow in the middle and ramped up again towards the end.

Thank you to Avon Books UK and NetGalley for enabling me to read The 13th Girl and share my thoughts.
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This was everything you need for a thriller and crime story. It is not as black and white as you first think and like most typical thrillers, is full of twists. This is a first for me by the author and one I enjoyed and would read more of their work. The book cover is eye-catching and appealing and would spark my interest if in a bookshop. Thank you very much to the author, publisher and Netgalley for this ARC.
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Lucy thought she had finally escaped her past, that night where the fire burned and she got away from the cult that had taken over her life as a little girl. But twenty years later, they are hunting Lucy. And this time she might not get away.

I love a good cult book! This had EVERYTHING you could possibly need to make an absolutely fantastic, rollercoaster of a cult book. It was packed with fantastic twists, a build up of tension that finished incredibly. This is, without a doubt, one of the best cult books I've read in a long time. Brilliant, absolutely brilliant.
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had such high hopes for this book. I beyond loved Stranded and thought I would love this one as well. The book beings well enough and then I just started losing interest. I pushed myself to finish the book as I felt that it would go back to being more enjoyable for me. Sadly, it never did.

The gist is that as a child, Lucy was the sole survivor of a horrific fire. Now twenty years later, she is a married woman with a baby on the way. The past doesn't want to remain in the past. The past sometimes comes back with a vengeance.

Goodwin proved she can write and tell a story. This just wasn't the story for me. I did not connect with Lucy, nor did I connect with the story. Plus, the whole cult thing is getting old to me. I wondered was it that I came into this book with such high expectations after loving Stranded?


Even though I did not love this book, I will read books by her in the future. Not all of them can be winners.

Others enjoyed this more than I did, so please read their reviews.


Thank you to Avon Books UK and NetGalley who provided me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All the thoughts and opinions are my own.
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A book I had high expectation after Stranded but this was unfortunatelly was not what I expected. It was about a cult and all the dark things you can immagine in a family that is not that. And was really shit on shit. But I was glad the good wins at the end.

What can you do when you have noone that is reliable and that has no second expectations for you. That need you for his purpose. It was really dark one for me. I immagine many can enjoy it. I liked the writing but not enjoy the story for real ro be honest.

Thank you Avon Books and Netgalley for this opportunity.
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