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Catherine House: Book summary and reviews of Catherine House by Elisabeth Thomas

Catherine House

A Novel

by Elisabeth Thomas

Catherine House by Elisabeth Thomas X
Catherine House by Elisabeth Thomas
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  • Publishes in USA 
    May 12, 2020
    320 pages
    Genre: Novels

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About this book

Book Summary

Combining the haunting sophistication and dusky, atmospheric style of Sarah Waters with the unsettling isolation of Kazuo Ishiguro's Never Let Me Go, Catherine House is a devious, deliciously steamy, and suspenseful page-turner with shocking twists and sharp edges that is sure to leave readers breathless.

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A gothic-infused debut of literary suspense, set within a secluded, elite university and following a dangerously curious, rebellious undergraduate who uncovers a shocking secret about an exclusive circle of students ... and the dark truth beneath her school's promise of prestige

Catherine House is a school of higher learning like no other. Hidden deep in the woods of rural Pennsylvania, this crucible of reformist liberal arts study with its experimental curriculum, wildly selective admissions policy, and formidable endowment, has produced some of the world's best minds: prize-winning authors, artists, inventors, Supreme Court justices, presidents. For those lucky few selected, tuition, room, and board are free. But acceptance comes with a price. Students are required to give the House three years—summers included—completely removed from the outside world. Family, friends, television, music, even their clothing must be left behind. In return, the school promises a future of sublime power and prestige, and that its graduates can become anything or anyone they desire.

Among this year's incoming class is Ines Murillo, who expects to trade blurry nights of parties, cruel friends, and dangerous men for rigorous intellectual discipline—only to discover an environment of sanctioned revelry. Even the school's enigmatic director, Viktória, encourages the students to explore, to expand their minds, to find themselves within the formidable iron gates of Catherine. For Ines, it is the closest thing to a home she's ever had. But the House's strange protocols soon make this refuge, with its worn velvet and weathered leather, feel increasingly like a gilded prison. And when tragedy strikes, Ines begins to suspect that the school—in all its shabby splendor, hallowed history, advanced theories, and controlled decadence—might be hiding a dangerous agenda within the secretive, tightly knit group of students selected to study its most promising and mysterious curriculum.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Elisabeth Thomas had me mesmerized from the first page. Dreamy and brimming with dread, Catherine House will swallow you whole." - Rory Power, New York Times bestselling author of Wilder Girls

"With this astonishing debut, Elisabeth Thomas has conjured an immersive, intoxicating world that left me as reluctant as its characters were to leave it behind. I inhaled the novel in a single, glorious weekend, but Catherine House and its denizens will linger with me for a very long time." - Robin Wasserman, author of Girls on Fire

"Thomas's debut novel is a dark, delicious gothic read that hits all the right spots in the best way. If you want a book you can't put down for even a second, this is it." - Forbes, The 10 Most Anticipated Books Of 2020

The information about Catherine House shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's online-magazine that keeps our members abreast of notable and high-profile books publishing in the coming weeks. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author of this book and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.

Reader Reviews

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Bev C

Catherine House
Where to begin?

dark...gothic...suspense fiction
I will preface by saying: PTB (pulled the bookmark) at about 50.
Age may be a factor, but I couldn't identify or sympathize with characters or plot.

I would definitely say you either love this story or put it aside easily.
The blunt edge of characters, activities and the house itself left me wondering what I was missing.
Apparently I was missing the point of it all.

In fairness, I would say there is an audience that will embrace and understand the reason for the story and would question my lack of comprehension.

Enjoy.....I'm moving on.

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Author Information

Elisabeth Thomas

Elisabeth Thomas grew up in Brooklyn, New York, where she still lives and now writes. She graduated from Yale University and currently works as an archivist for a modern art museum. This is her first novel.

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