The book starts out with our narrator Jane. Portions of the book are present day and told in first person and the rest in diary form. The journal portions read exactly like the present day. She is always the outsider looking in. The school is so cut off from the world that only vague references in society attitudes toward sexuality denote the years. That and when Jane researches her school alumni.
Jane doesn't write the usual boring entries about herself as most self obsesssed teenagers do. The journal entries are all about Lucy. Lucy was supposedly her friend from high school and then later on boarding school. Self-obsessed entries would have been less depressing and could have covered some of the plot holes. Had Jane not been witness to the alleged suicides from her own school past I could have forgiven the big reveal from her journal entries.
The school Heart Lake had a myth about three sisters commiting suicide. Supposedly two of Jane's roommates killed themselves and Jane deep down worries she should have died.
This character seriously needed to stop accepting blame for others cruelties. If she knew Lucy murdered her own baby, cut herself to disguise the blood, murdered their room mate Deirdre then made it look like a suicide then why not admit it? Why was this supposedly her fault? Lucy was a sick sociopath. She liked stringing them all along. ESPECIALLY obvious Lucy was having sex with her brother who wasn't really her brother. Blaming Jane for telling him that she had a baby is like blaming someone for not lying for a cheater who didn't know you were cheating... oh wait that was this situation as well. Lucy didn't cheat but Jane didn't know the baby was Lucy's.
I saw Albie as the doctor reveal a mile off. Who thinks Lucy would have dropped Albie like she dropped Jane? Lucy managed to get everyone to worship her despite being dreadful. I'll hand it to Goodman some of her nastiness was subtle. Jane attributed a lot of it to thoughtlessness. She didn't devote much time to building up why she loved Matt however. She spent twenty years in a fog of fepression for a bloke screwing his sister who didn't bother to wtite when her mom passed away?
I gave this book two stars for the use of unreliable narrator and still being obvious.
It might have been better as a straight up suicide epidemic story.