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The Temple House Vanishing

3.50  ·  Rating details ·  875 ratings  ·  312 reviews
Twenty-five years ago, a sixteen-year-old schoolgirl and her charismatic teacher disappeared without trace...

In an elite Catholic girls' boarding-school the pupils live under the repressive, watchful gaze of the nuns. Seeking to break from the cloistered atmosphere two of the students - Louisa and Victoria - quickly become infatuated with their young, bohemian art teacher,
...more
Kindle Edition, 336 pages
Published February 20th 2020 by Corvus (first published February 6th 2020)
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  • The Temple House Vanishing by Rachel Donohue
    The Temple House Vanishing

    Release date: Jul 06, 2021
    “Donohue is a master of clean, sharp prose, and has a hugely impressive ability to create layers of atmosphere or ratchet up tension in a couple of be ...more

    Format: Print book

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    Availability: 50 copies available, 1066 people requesting

    Giveaway dates: Feb 28 - Mar 21, 2021

    Countries available: U.S.

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    Showing 1-30
    Average rating 3.50  · 
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     ·  875 ratings  ·  312 reviews


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    Paromjit
    Nov 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
    This is a fine debut from Rachel Donohoe, a dark, chillingly suspenseful mystery novel with gothic overtones, where raging teenage hormones, overheated emotions, and imaginations spill over in a all girls Roman Catholic boarding school. In a school run by nuns, there is the juxtaposition of opposites, the strictures and repression of religion with its damnation and morality, crossed with the rampant emotional intensity, desires and obsessions of young girls, particularly with the incendiary addi ...more
    Ceecee
    Nov 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
    Temple House is a second rate girls boarding school that thinks it’s first rate or at least some of the incumbents do, especially the nuns that run it. In September 1990 Louisa, a very clever 16 year old girl, is offered a scholarship at Temple House which she accepts but she is looked down on particularly by the girls who are fee paying. In her art class she meets fellow student Victoria and her art teacher Mr Lavelle. Victoria mesmerises Louisa and it appears as if she is her only friend. They ...more
    Ivana - Diary of Difference
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    Twenty-five years ago, a sixteen-year-old schoolgirl and her charismatic teacher disappeared without trace…

    The Temple House Vanishing left me with a tiny scar in my soul after reading it. It is intriguing and mysterious, it is real and delusional. The next time when I mention a special mystery, with a cruel end – this will be the first book that pops in my mind.

    Louisa and Victoria are two friends that study in a Catholic girls’ b
    ...more
    Sue

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    When I saw this on my libraries audio BorrowBox as a download now with no waiting list, I remembered I had this on my book trolley waiting to be read. So, I thought I could listen to it on the run and then follow along with my book when I relax.
    I just couldn’t leave this book alone.

    It’s a sultry read brooding book that the narrator did very well. Based around a Catholic boarding school and the narrators voice is with an Irish accent this really married
    ...more
    Roman Clodia
    Remember those old Malory Towers (which gets a name-check) books? This seems to revisit the school while adding in sex, a handsome male teacher, nuns, and some The Secret History-style gothic atmosphere. It definitely has a YA vibe as new girl Louise falls foul of the dress code (indoor shoes, please, for the priceless parquet flooring!) and gets some serious telling off from posh head-girl Helen. But the atmosphere darkens with death, lusty triangles and the mysterious disappearance of teacher ...more
    Susan
    Jan 17, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    This debut involves an elite, Catholic boarding school, and the mysterious disappearance of scholarship girl, Louisa and charismatic art teacher, Edward Lavelle.

    I often find myself drawn to novels set in Catholic schools – probably because I went to a convent school myself. Here we have Louisa, whose parents are divorcing, and who has decided that she wants to reinvent herself at Temple House School, but finds that she does not really fit in. Of course, there is bullying among the girls and thi
    ...more
    Louise Wilson
    Dec 28, 2019 rated it liked it
    Set in 1990.

    At an elite Catholic girls boarding school, the girls live under the ever watchful nuns. Louisa and Victoria quickly become besotted with their art teacher. But then Louisa disappears at the same time as Mr. Lavette, the art teacher. Twenty five years later, a journalist is investigating this unsolved case.

    This is an atmospheric tale from beginning to end. It's full of mystery and suspense. The story is narrated by Louisa and the journalists perspectives. It's full of twist and turn
    ...more
    Bex (Beckie Bookworm)
    50147159._SX318_

    Not really sure about this one not because there is anything majorly wrong with it, it's definitely well written that I do not fault it on, its just I found it to be rather slow-moving and somewhat tedious and because of this I did find myself skimming a lot.
    The language used here is eloquent and lyrical in all its descriptions of life at Temple House and you can almost imagine and place yourself centre stage experiencing the angst and total over the top dramatics and reactions that this age alw
    ...more
    Ceecee
    Nov 11, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Temple House is a second rate girls boarding school that thinks it’s first rate or at least some of the incumbents do, especially the nuns that run it. In September 1990 Louisa, a very clever 16 year old girl, is offered a scholarship at Temple House which she accepts but she is looked down on particularly by the girls who are fee paying. In her art class she meets fellow student Victoria and her art teacher Mr Lavelle. Victoria mesmerises Louisa and it appears as if she is her only friend. They ...more
    Umut Rados
    When I heard the premise of this book, I immediately wanted to read it because there's something mesmerizing about boarding school mysteries.
    Temple House is an elite catholic boarding school, where Louisa is admitted because she's a genius. She makes friends with Victoria very soon after she arrives, who's also very close to the charismatic art teacher of the school, Mr. Laville. Within a couple of months, she vanishes into thin air with Mr. Laville, and 25 years after, no one still knows what
    ...more
    Lou
    Feb 19, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    The Temple House Vanishing is Rachel Donohue’s superbly unique and astonishingly outstanding debut novel; it was a real struggle to put the book down because it takes you and holds you captive with no means of escape. It is very much a brooding, slow-burn thriller rather than anything fast-paced but it remains a steadfast page-turner regardless. Set in a Roman Catholic convent in the 1990s and with a sense of nostalgia and a portrayal of the zeitgeist of the time, the story follows Louisa and Vi ...more
    Liz Barnsley
    Sep 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing

    The Temple House Vanishing is a beautifully atmospheric and involving novel, written in a lyrical literary style with a mysteriously compelling story.

    Louisa and her art teacher disappeared one night many years ago. In a case that engaged the nation, neither of them were ever found.

    Through the voices of Louisa and a journalist writing a case study 25 years later, we learn about Temple House school, the cliques and the friendships, the social divide and the slow burn of an obsessive relationship.

    T
    ...more
    Rachel Hall
    Feb 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
    Claustrophobic and unsettling tale of a mysterious disappearance and the secrets within a Catholic girls’ boarding school.

    Rachel Donohue’s assured debut is a hugely atmospheric story of teenage hormones, destructive obsessions and the consequences of jealousy set in a Catholic girls’ boarding school. Complete with gothic overtones and reminiscent of the intensity of Donna Tartt’s The Secret History, The Temple House Vanishing follows a journalist determined to uncover the twenty-five year old my
    ...more
    Sheree | Keeping Up With The Penguins
    The Temple House Vanishing starts with a bang (major trigger warning), then simmers, until it boils over once again in a dramatic conclusion. It might sound like your standard girl-goes-missing mystery/thriller, but Donohue manages to use a well-worn plot to interrogate all manner of very literary themes: class, religion, jealousy. I was particularly taken with the way she presented the ramifications of our collective obsession with true crime. It’s a must read for fans of Picnic At Hanging Rock ...more
    Nigel
    Oct 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
    Shelves: arc, netgalley
    In brief - I was a little unsure about this one to start with however it's very well written and highly atmospheric to me.

    In full
    Temple House is a private Catholic school set on cliff tops in Ireland. Twenty five years ago a 16 year old girl and her arts teacher went missing and no trace of them was ever found. Nuns and prefects kept a very close eye on the girls - the atmosphere is repressive. Those who do not "fit in" are treated as outsiders. Enter Louisa, Victoria and Mr Lavelle - are they
    ...more
    Miriam Smith (A Mother’s Musings)
    People I know and respect have really enjoyed this book, I can understand totally how you could feel it is an incredibly written book and could easily get caught up in the characters and story but unfortunately I just didn’t get it. Couldn’t connect, endear to the characters or really get off the starting blocks with this one. I lost interest in Louisa and why she and Mr Lavelle went missing and by the end couldn’t have cared why they disappeared. I also found it exceedingly hard to believe a st ...more
    Karen Mace
    Feb 20, 2020 rated it liked it
    Shelves: the-pigeonhole
    I read this via Pigeonhole.

    This was a dark, unsettling slow burn of a read that really explores the complexities of obsessive love and teenage girls. How growing up can be so tangled and traumatic, and how the art of love can cloud the judgement of those involved.

    The story centres around a school where a teacher and young student went missing 25 years ago and the scandal has never really died down. So when a journalist gets the chance to investigate the story a little deeper, even she isn't prep
    ...more
    Sheri
    Nov 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

    The title and the cover attracted me, and I’m a sucker for stories set in schools, even if the basic plot - teenage girls, a charismatic male teacher - didn’t sound, on the face of it, all that original.

    We open - shockingly - with the suicide of one character, before moving back in time to 1990 when Louisa, a clever sixteen year old, wins a scholarship place - as a weekly boarder - at Temple House, an elite convent boarding school. Set on a cliff top, it’s all “Victorian turreted austerity”. T
    ...more
    alailiander
    Sep 20, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Shelves: arcs
    A little bit Shirley Jackson, a little bit Virgin Suicides, a little bit Lovely Bones, a little bit Rebecca … I’m not sure; there was a lot that felt familiar about this one, but definitely not derivative. I really enjoyed it.
    Some of the blurb for this one feels a bit misdirecting, but maybe that is better for the reader; it leaves room for twists and other reveals to be effective.
    We meet Louisa as she starts at Temple House, a moody Catholic boarding school. She’s like many teenage girl protag
    ...more
    Susan Hampson
    Feb 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
    Shelves: netgalley
    Louisa thought that she would have been treated like an equal at Temple House after she had won a scholarship there, but the attitude of the other pupils let her know differently. They, after all, were students whose parents had paid for their right to be there, but there was one exception, a pupil who befriended Louisa. Victoria was different and so was the young art teacher, Mr Lavelle where soon a dangerous friendship developed between the three of them.
    Although this is partly set in the 1990
    ...more
    MaryannC. Book Freak
    A suspenseful and gothic debut from Rachel Donohue about an elite Catholic girls school named The Temple House where 25 years ago Louisa and her handsome art teacher Mr Lavelle disappeared. A precocious intellect, Louisa has won a scholarship and looks forward to escaping her family after her parents divorce and she is left to pick up the pieces of their broken lives. Once at Temple House Louisa meets Victoria and her handsome swoon worthy art teacher, Mr Lavelle. As Louisa settles into her new ...more
    Linda Harris
    Nov 12, 2020 rated it liked it
    Not my usual read but was recommended by a friend . I actually enjoyed it . Quite chilling and absorbing . Characters not the nicest . But I could see the end coming by the middle . All in all I’d recommend
    Tracy Wood
    Dec 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
    Shelves: z-netgalley, za-2019
    When Louisa and Victoria met at Temple House Catholic School in the mid 1990's they became firm friends almost immediately. Their favourite lesson was art with the young personable Mr Lavelle whose classes took place in a studio in the grounds, complete with sofas, throws and coffee on tap. In all other ways both girls are outcasts, one a first intake scholarship student who just doesn't belong the other a dreamer who has no wish to conform.

    When a young journalist is given the chance to do an a
    ...more
    Jenny
    Nov 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
    Shelves: 2019-read
    This is a dark book - it has a very atmospheric and gothic feel about it. It is written primarily from two separate perspectives.

    The first is that if Louisa, a teenager, struggling to fit in and find her identity. We see her start at a Temple House, a Catholic school and form a friendship with Victoria. The reader shares their friendship and inappropriate relationship with their teacher, Mr Lavelle.

    The second perspective is a modern day journalist who is investigating the disappearance of Loui
    ...more
    Kimbofo
    Feb 03, 2020 rated it really liked it
    Shelves: 2020-reviews
    I’m quite partial to an atmospheric read, particularly if it is set in a boarding school and written by an Irish writer, and Rachel Donohue’s debut novel, The Temple House Vanishing, ticks all those boxes. Throw in an intriguing cast of characters and a mystery to solve and I couldn’t be happier. I raced through this book in a matter of days.

    To read the rest of my review, please visit my blog.
    ...more
    Sarah
    Jan 06, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    As a child, I adored Enid Blyton's Mallory Towers books and was desperate to go to boarding school. I imagined midnight feasts, friends that became as close as sisters, playing pranks on the teachers and receiving a first-class education. After reading The Temple House Vanishing I can only be grateful that I was neither from the sort of family that values this type of education nor was I the recipient of a scholarship due to my superior intellect.
    The book is a richly atmospheric gothic story th
    ...more
    Reyes
    Feb 21, 2020 rated it really liked it
    Thanks to Atlantic Books and NetGalley for giving me the opportunity to read this!


    Actual rating: 3.5 Stars

    Mild spoilers ahead due to trigger warnings at the end of the review (although you can really figure out what to expect from the blurb)



    The Temple House Vanishing is a good gothic mystery with an excellent setting and great ambience. I figured out the mystery pretty early in the book, but that didn't stop me from enjoying it, thanks to the charismatic, pretentious (in the best possible way) c
    ...more
    Sheila
    Feb 20, 2020 rated it really liked it
    This is a story about Louisa, who earns a scholarship granting her entry to what is considered to be a prestigious school run by nuns. The Temple House School is described in vivid detail and I could picture it perfectly in my mind. The story is set in the 1990s, but I felt that it had more of a 60s vibe. The writing is beautiful and I found myself pausing for thought on a number of occasions.

    Louisa feels out of place initially, but soon develops a friendship with the enigmatic Victoria and Mr.
    ...more
    Penny-sue Wolfe
    Feb 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
    This book is such a good debut novel, and had me engaged til the end. It was so hard to put down. The plot focuses on Louisa who is from a broken home and is sent to Temple House boarding school Temple house. It is here that she meets Victoria and the enigmatic art teacher Mr Lavelle. Strong bonds are formed at the boarding school especially between the three and what creates a love triangle. This then causes love, jealousy, and rage which culminates in Louisa and Mr Lavelle running away togeth ...more
    Eva
    Jun 12, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
    Well, I can’t exactly say my 20 Books of Summer is off to a flying start. That is not to say The Temple House Vanishing is a bad book. It is just extremely slow (OMG so slow!) and not at all what I was expecting from the book description. Now, I don’t mind a slow burner but in this instance, it didn’t take me very long to feel like this book just wasn’t for me. Yet I was determined to finish it.

    Twenty-five years ago, Louisa and her art teacher disappeared from a boarding school. Now, a journalis
    ...more
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