Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Other Sellers on Amazon
+ $3.99 shipping
The Hanging Girl Hardcover – October 3, 2017
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
"A surprisingly dark thriller that will find a home in libraries where there is a need for strong female protagonists and engrossing mysteries." –SLJ
"...The multiple twists in the ending pack several hefty wallops of surprise and reward the reader with a more than satisfactory payout." –Bulletin
"The final twist is creepy and, like all good twists, makes perfect sense when reading back to see what you missed." --The Globe and Mail
About the Author
Eileen Cook is a multi-published author with her novels appearing in eight different languages. She spent most of her teen years wishing she were someone else or somewhere else, which is great training for a writer. Eileen lives in Vancouver with her husband and one very naughty dog and no longer wishes to be anyone or anywhere else.
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
An infinity of stars
THE HANGING GIRL just might be a perfect book. WITH MALICE, Eileen Cook's last year home run was one of my favorites of last year, so my expectations were quite high for this years book. I didn't think Cook could equal last year, I hoped THE HANGING GIRL would be good enough for 4 or 5 stars.
When I received email notification I was granted the ARC, I felt like a lottery winner. My plan was to read slowly, to stretch out the pleasure. I even forced myself to take a break. Hours later, I failed in my efforts and finished this masterpiece.
Skye, a fake psychic, reads tarot cards for fun. Her mother, who believes she's psychic, couldn't read a sign if it said STOP at the end of a street. Skye hopes to save enough money to accompany her BFF Drew to college in New York City, but the odds aren't in her favor. Then Paige, one of the popular girls, is kidnapped and Skye has visions. Or does she? What starts off as a way to make some extra money for NYC, might just end up killing her.
THE HANGING GIRL never stops twisting and turning or surprising. Eileen Cook doesn't just twist for the sake of throwing surprises, each OMG-I-didn't-see-that-coming felt organic and necessary. I consider myself a savvy reader, but Cook fooled me every time.
Skye and honesty have a precarious relationship, but her heart is sincere and without malice (pun intended). Her prevarications stem more from self preservation than an intent to be deceitful. I didn't always agree, but understood her motivations. I liked her. A lot.
Cook set the bar high last year, and even higher this year. Her use of voice and pacing made THE HANGING GIRL unputdownable. My only criticism is that I wish she could write faster, so I wouldn't have to wait until I see what she does next.
My favorite pro-diversity moment is when Skye slams Chik-FilA as homophobic and lectures her mother for praising the fast food restaurant.
If you like mysteries, thrillers, strong female characters, great writing, heck, if you like reading THE HANGING GIRL is a must read.
And this one starts with a tarot reading in the very first chapter! Skye Thorne, our protagonist is a gifted grifter because she has learned to observe the more subtle cues people provide about themselves and parlays that knowledge into seeming omniscient in her reading for her fellow high school senior, Sara. Like most teen girls, Sara's entire being is wrapped up into her relationship with her boyfriend, a not-very-nice football player. Skye has seen his ugly side, but she gets paid to give the client what she wants, and advises Sara that she holds the keys to keeping the relationship fresh in her own creative hands.
Skye is not Cook's first preternaturally worldly-wise grifter protagonist--Sadie from The Almost Truth initially seems like Skye's soul sister: both have aspirations to getting away from their dead-end towns and the impoverished, hard-working mothers who have raised them, but their needy, grasping parents are obstacles to doing just that.
In both books, in fact, a big con is the plot from which the narrative spins. In The Hanging Girl, Skye wants to room with her best friend, Drew, in New York City; she will work while Drew attends college. But NYC apartments cost money, the kind of money you just don't earn at the Burger Barn, where our industrious protagonist works while attending school full time. So when a kidnapper with a well-defined plan offers Skye a lucrative part in the caper, she hesitantly agrees to pretend to the cops that she's had a vision.
There are twists and turns in the kidnapping, and Cook keeps the surprises percolating until the very end. I couldn't put it down until I finished it, and I want you to do the same, so I'm omitting anything that smacks of spoilery. The greatest surprise for me was how this book ended, and it was disappointing for me, too--very unlike any of Cook's previous books that I've read. Without giving the plot away, I will simply say Cook upended my every expectation, so it's not a flaw in the writing.
However, it is not giving away too much to cite this from the Acknowledgments section: "I learned a lot about how to fake psychic ability from the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry. They do a great conference, and if you're interested in critical thinking--this is the group for you." We know from the outset that Skye has chosen to read tarot cards solely to make money, and she uses any number of "cold reading" tricks (which are not limited to cards) to make herself credible. She even takes advantage of her job at the school to look into confidential files, which is not just unethical, but illegal. Her mother, whom Skye sees as a fatuous dreamer, "believes in aliens, fairies, the Loch Ness monster, Bigfoot, and in all those online scams that promise you millions of dollars..." and is the original tarot reader in the family.
This gives readers who are drawn to the card reading element of the book the idea that tarot readers are either con artists or irrational fantasists. That seems to me to be a disservice to the tarot and a little bit of a grift itself--you use the tarot to attract readers, yet you simply emphasize its most generally (mis)understood reputation, instead of its unmatched potential as a tool for self-help and self-understanding. That's like claiming that anyone who uses a sharp knife must be a killer, instead of recognizing the use of scalpels to heal. Don't blame the tool, blame the individual implementing it in unethical ways.
In the name of equal time, I asked the tarot what is its best application, and received the Three of Cups. It's a card of community and interaction. In the Cosmic Tarot version of the card, it shows a pair of dancers, each attuned to the other's every body movement, but each with one's own individual pose. The tarot isn't about mimicry, which is in effect what cold reading is. It's about harmonious synergy, where the combination of energies creates something uniquely vibrant and new.
People can choose to misuse the tarot's possibilities, but they always have the choice to stretch beyond sordid parameters. That's real success, and it's something Ms. Cook might wish to remember when writing her next book.
Most recent customer reviews
Candi "Skye" Thorn, a senior in highschool, has been giving...Read more
This book really got me by surprise!Read more