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The Cloisters cover art

The Cloisters

Written by: Katy Hays
Narrated by: Emily Tremaine
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Publisher's Summary

Brought to you by Penguin.

Ann Stilwell arrives in New York City, hoping to spend her summer working at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Instead, she is assigned to The Cloisters, a gothic museum and garden renowned for its collection of medieval and Renaissance art.

There she is drawn into a small circle of charismatic but enigmatic researchers, each with their own secrets and desires, including the museum's curator, Patrick Roland, who is convinced that the history of Tarot holds the key to unlocking contemporary fortune telling.

Relieved to have left her troubled past behind and eager for the approval of her new colleagues, Ann is only too happy to indulge some of Patrick's more outlandish theories. But when Ann discovers a mysterious, once-thought lost deck of 15th-century Italian tarot cards, she suddenly finds herself at the centre of a dangerous game of power, toxic friendship and ambition.

And as the game being played within The Cloisters spirals out of control, Ann must decide whether she is truly able to defy the cards and shape her own future...

Bringing together the modern and the arcane, The Cloisters is a rich, thrillingly told tale of obsession and the ruthless pursuit of power.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio.

©2022 Katy Hays (P)2022 Penguin Audio

What listeners say about The Cloisters

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  • Justin Z.
  • 13-01-23

Love triangle with a dash of Tarot

Being mooted as a debit of the year, I expected more in terms of the plot/mystery/supernatural element advertised. What I got was a decent read with an unusual setting, some fairly mundane plot twists and a ‘mystery’ which only the shadow of the possible ‘unreliable narrator’ gimmick keeps alive. At its core it’s a low-grade live triangle and coming of age novel. The tarot aspects feel like they were thrown in as a dress-up theme with little real detail: you never feel like the cards are affecting anything of much, even though they are meant to be key in the story.

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  • Richard Garnett
  • 18-01-23

Fine, but not not dazzling

Didn't really grip me. The story was ok but not that interesting, didn't keep you wanting more - the ending could be predicted a mile off. The characters were a bit flat. It was never clear or believable why any of the characters actually liked or connected with each other - nothing attractive or interesting in any of them. You couldn't get invested in any of them. Narration was generally ok, except for the fact that no one had bothered to make sure the narrator could pronounce numerous words or names, e.g. Émile Zola, chaise lounge... I lost count of the many examples. It was jarring.

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  • M. Weaver
  • 04-01-23

Superb story telling!

I loved this story so much that at the end I restarted it and listened right through again. She’s so good at describing her inner process, but also the fascinating environment of the Cloisters and the characters populating it. And the twists and turns are so well plotted! I didn’t see the reveal coming until it arrived. Highly recommended! And well read, which matters a lot to me.

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  • AnnaBanya
  • 06-12-22

Disappointing

A great idea, poorly executed. Frothy & light throughout where it could have been really deliciously dark & intriguing. Unfortunately I think that this was exacerbated by the narrator. Her intonation is flat and on a monotone with the occasional exception in weirdly unexpected places. Her pronunciation is terrible, particularly on key words such as Renaissance and Medieval. There’s simply no life or emotion in her reading.

It could have been so, so good but just missed the mark.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Jennifer Joyce
  • 01-02-23

A book that could have been better

I was excited about the tarot card theme of this book and the plot building up, but it fizzled out before gaining momentum.

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 31-01-23

Stupendously mediocre

Most mediocre book packaged up nicely. Wants to be The Secret History so badly. Read Donna Tartt instead or M.L. Rio.

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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Liz
  • 29-01-23

Not the best

I thought I would give this a go but wasn’t impressed with the story or the characters. No depth to it . Not very good descriptions for the characters or places.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • rebecca g.
  • 28-01-23

Where’s the punchline?

The vocal is not quite right, it might be because the authoress is older than her characters, it shows. It could have been balanced my a more youthful voice. I don’t think I’ll finish this, or I’ll rewrite it in the loo.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 23-01-23

Lead in by mystery’s and tarot

Pretentious / too wordy for the sake of it. More story and characters required but good for back drop and scene setting. Felt like the author was showing off art history knowledge rather than getting to the story. Pleased with ending. Picked up lace last 5 chapters which i enjoyed. Despite having take an art history!

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • the typist
  • 22-01-23

Mawkish, sloppy, romantic drivel

Pitched as a gothic mystery, you’ll be sorely disappointed if you’re expecting anything literary or interesting. This is Mills & Boon territory. Poorly drawn characters, a lazy plot and some seriously bad dialogue. It all felt so schmaltzy. Ugh.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Simon
  • 12-01-23

Interesting descriptive read

I really like the descriptive way this story has been written. Even although I found it quite predictable I enjoyed the story. X

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  • Peter Mather
  • 22-01-23

Corny

Good performance by Tremaine
Unfortunately ends up being a sort of cross between Emily in Paris and Midsomer Murders

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 16-01-23

Great story

Enjoyed this story very much. Well read. Good detail. Not as predictable as I expected. Recommend