I wanted to like this book. The premise was fascinating. But the execution left so much to be desired. Perhaps it was the translator, as this book was originally written in German, but I found the timeline difficult to follow, especially at the beginning when Emma was talking about working for weeks on decorations for a dance that happened at the beginning of term. Did she work on them last term? If so, do the students at Stolzberg come and go often or not? And if Emma has been attending Stolzberg for several years, why did it take so long for her to recognize Darcy (massive eyeroll at the name, btw, but I’ll give it a pass) and put the pieces of his tragedy together?
Hannah was also something of a mystery. She was a new student, but instantly friends with Emma. It seemed like she was simply a mechanism for Emma to travel the school and introduce us to characters that she had no business interacting with at the beginning of the book otherwise.
…I’m going to have to call this a DNF, I think, because nobody would figure out how that book worked so quickly, even given the situation that occurred. Especially since it aligned with the MC’s own thoughts.
It’s just too coincidental and hurries the story along too quickly and regardless of any delight to be found in the second half of the book, I find I just don’t care about what happens to anyone in this school.
Perhaps it will be an amazing book for someone. I hope it is. But that someone is not me.