Joanna Goodman is the author of three acclaimed novels. She lives in Toronto with her two children and her husband where they operate upscale retail linen shops Au Lit.
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The Finishing School
Kersti Kuusk, a scholarship student at a famed boarding school in the Swiss Alps, is awestruck at first by her classmates, these daughters of privilege, who welcome her to their world.
At the heart of her tight knit group is her roommate, the luminous Cressida Strauss, a tall beauty who is as brilliant as she is determined. Cressida fiercely pursues what she wants and gets it—until tragedy strikes.
One spring night, Cressida plunges from a fourth floor balcony with catastrophic consequences. Officials quickly dismiss it as an accident, but many questions remain. Was it a suicide attempt? Was she pushed?
These questions nag Kersti long after she returns home. She marries, becomes a bestselling writer, and embarks on exhausting cycles of fertility treatments that are straining her marriage. Why was Cressida obsessed with the banned Helvetian Society, and the two students who were expelled twenty years earlier? Why was Cressida intent on finding a missing ledger of the proceedings of a girls’ “secret society”?
When Kersti is invited to address a school reunion, she begins probing the cover-up. What she unearths is a frightening compost of deceit and abuse. In one shocking, portentous moment, Kersti makes a decision that will connect her to Cressida forever. It also raises the stakes in her need to solve the mystery, redeem her past, and rescue her marriage.
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