This stunning debut thriller, set in a girls’ boarding school, will leave you breathless until the final page is turned.
Sometimes girls are the meanest of them all...
Female friendship is intense and that intensity can erupt into dangerous passions when teenage girls are cooped up in an exclusive East Coast boarding school.
Beautiful, streetwise Cassidy Thomas; debutante jock Abby Madison; academic, sensitive Karen Mullens; and sophisticated troublemaking Zoey Spalding are four seventeen-year-olds who should be cruising happily through their Senior Year. But jealousies are simmering. And when Zoey plays a game with the class list—if you lose your virginity you get a star beside your name—it sets in motion a chain of shocking events.
Nine months later, when one of the girls is murdered, the others must ask themselves if they can carry the truth of what happened the rest of their lives.
Tell Us No Secrets describes the bonds between these adolescent girls as well as the terrible pain of betrayal and the tragic consequences of peer pressure running riot at a time when the seismic shift of the Sixties changed the rules for everyone.
Set during the 1969–1970 academic year at the Stonybridge School for Girls in the Berkshires, Sterling's solid debut follows four 17-year-old girls through their senior year. Class president and jock Abby Madison used to be best friends with delicate star pupil Karen Mullens, but replaces Karen with the beautiful albeit unscholarly Cassidy Thomas as her new best friend. Devastated, Karen forms a close friendship with mature nonconformist Zoey Spalding, who was previously best friends with Cassidy. Fed up with her time at Stonybridge, Zoey proposes an "entertaining" idea to Karen: putting a star next to each student on the senior class list who loses her virginity. What starts out as fun turns into a domino effect of exposed secrets and rising tensions among the girls. Near the end of the school year, one of the four is murdered, with no suspect found. Scattered throughout are chapters that take place in 2018, narrated by an anonymous Stonybridge alumna who knows the truth about the murder. The result is a slow-burn psychological thriller filled with well-developed characters that builds to a satisfying, if unsettling, conclusion. Sterling is a writer to watch.