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The Flower and The Serpent

4.33  ·  Rating details ·  6 ratings  ·  6 reviews
Mysterious disappearances, a battle for the spotlight and terrifying nightmares. It’s just another day at Beacon Hill High School.

Auditions for Macbeth are over, and on the bus ride home, a mysterious driver gives sixteen-year-old Violet and her friends’ three strange predictions:

One of the girls will shine like a star.
One will invite darkness into her breast.
One will
Kindle Edition, 324 pages
Published December 4th 2019
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Average rating 4.33  · 
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Nov 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, arc

I've just finished reading an ARC of The Flower and the Serpent by Madeleine D'Este and I am still feeling blown away.

The story is set in a high school in Hobart, Tasmania, where a group of students are rehearsing for a production of Macbeth. The dark history of the play is well-known, and D'Este's setting - on school grounds haunted by past evil- plays perfectly against it. Imbued with a sense of creeping menace, the novel is genuinely frightening at times, but the
Jon Black
Nov 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I was fortunate to receive an advanced review copy of this work.

The Flower and the Serpent, by Madeline D’Este, is adult-friendly YA fiction straddling the line between horror and supernatural mystery. The year is 1992, Beacon Hill is a small community in Tasmania with a tortured past, and three young women, Violet, Holly, and Lila, are about to be swept up by their high’s schools production of Macbeth.

Many of the Scottish Play’s key themes, such as betrayal, revenge, witchcraft, and unbridled
K.M. Allan
Nov 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
The Flower and The Serpent is told through the different viewpoints of teenager Violet, her friends, their drama teacher, and a dark entity that haunts the Tasmanian town of Beacon Hill. It infiltrates the group of teenagers as they are preparing to put on a production of Macbeth, causing havoc and keeping the reader guessing until the reveal on the night of the play's final rehearsal. The mystery builds throughout the story, and the author does a great job of putting the reader into the minds ...more
Emily Wrayburn
Review originally posted on A Keyboard and an Open Mind 25 November 2019:

Confession: I don’t really know Macbeth that well. I don’t really like Shakespeare’s tragedies. And that probably affected by enjoyment of this book. (Someone give me a romcom set around a production of Much Ado About Nothing, please!)

Well, then, Emily, if that’s the case, why did you put your hand up for an ARC of a book about a group of teenagers staging Macbeth?

Well, because while I might have been more into musicals, I
Veronica Strachan
Nov 24, 2019 rated it really liked it
This was much more grimdark than the high school YA horror I expected from the title and blurb. And all the better for it. Nothing like a little terror happening to a bunch of teenagers to pass the time!
The Tasmanian locale, dreary weather and spooky myths set the stage for plenty of misery and mayhem. D'Este is a great writer and has ingeniously wound a complex tale around the events of a few days as an odd group of teenagers and teachers gather to put on a play that has its own spooky history.
Nov 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: australia, fiction
The Flower and the Serpent (2019) by Madeleine D'Este is an excellent young adult thriller. Three girls head into a production of Macbeth directed by the inexperienced new drama teacher at the school. The production is being done over the winter school holidays in June in Hobart when the days are short. The school is located on a site long associated with dark events.

The book has elements of Stranger Things with fine character development and kids that feel like real kids. The plot moves
Vera Brook
marked it as to-read
Nov 04, 2019
Naomi Lisa Shippen
marked it as to-read
Nov 23, 2019
Dominic Bradley
is currently reading it
Dec 06, 2019
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Growing up in Tasmania, Madeleine now lives in inner city Melbourne surrounded by books. After studying law (and never practising) and travelling the world, Madeleine now lives a double life, immersed in the corporate world by day and writing female-led speculative fiction or podcasting by night.

When not writing, Madeleine enjoys podcasts, knitting, forteana, indie films, kettle bells and coffee