Tuesday 9 July 2013

Review ~ The Yonahlossee Riding Camp for Girls by Anton DiSclafani

The Yonahlossee Riding Camp for Girls
Published June 6th 2013 by Tinder Press

Set against the beautiful background of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Blowing Rock, North Carolina, this interesting debut novel tells a rather poignant story of lost innocence in the story of fifteen year old Thea Atwell, who has been sent away from her parents, and her twin brother Sam, to the eponymous Yonahlossee Riding School for Girls. The reason why she has been uprooted from her family in Florida is only implied, however, as the story unfolds the reason for Thea’s banishment is revealed in tantalising glimpses.

The languor of the 1930’s and the dreaminess of a bygone age is encapsulated in the almost surreal atmosphere of the riding camp, where some of the girls ride sedate horses by day, and yet sneak away to illicit assignations under cover of darkness. Throughout the narrative there is an underlying sexual tension which is made all the more evocative by the gradual revealing of Thea’s involvement in a scandal of epic proportions.

Overall, I enjoyed the descriptions of life at this rather strange boarding school, which in many ways reminded me of the Enid Blyton boarding school stories I so enjoyed as a young teenager, but obviously this books’ more adult theme set a more risqué tone to the story. 

My thanks to Real Readers for my review copy of this book.

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