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In Wilderness by Diane Thomas

In Wilderness (2015)

by Diane Thomas

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Showing 1-5 of 77 (next | show all)
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
In Wilderness is an atmospheric book, and a fairly decent thriller but I found more problems as the book went on. This books is billed as a love story. It is not. Thomas' psychological/stream of consciousness chapters were excellent, but unfortunately this book went downhill for me. I think it would have been a better novella, stopping at a point of tension and not in the unfortunate muddled finish without resolution.
  kc.teadrinker | Jul 17, 2017 |
The year is 1966 and Katherine Reid receives a heartbreaking diagnosis. She is dying from a terminal illness. The doctors can't even figure out what's wrong with her, only that she is dying. So, she sells everything's she owns and moves far away to a cabin in Georgia's Appalachian Mountains. Her plan is to spend her last months in solitude and she has brought with her a gun to end it if it gets too painful towards the end. But she doesn't know that she is not alone. In the forest, someone is watching her. The young Vietnam veteran Danny is watching her with a growing obsession. Danny is haunted by war memories and is living in an old once grand mansion alone.

On Goodreads, you can read that this is a suspenseful and literary love story. I agree with suspenseful, but let not describe the relationship in this book as a love story. It's a relationship between two people that needs each and for a brief moment in life find comfort in each other arms. But love story, no. I thought it would be a love story, but certain things in the book, Danny destroying her car so that she wouldn't be able to leave and his attitude towards her, when they are together, isn't something that I would describe as a love story. A very dark love story perhaps, but now, it's a relationship.

Anyway, I did enjoy reading the book, but I did not love it as much I had hoped I would. It was well written, but the story just didn't work all the way for me, I liked the beginning when the hadn't met yet and the ending best. But the part, when they got together, was just no to my liking that much. Thankfully the book ended on a high note.

Btw, in author's note, you can read about what it was ailing both Danny and Katherine. Danny suffered from PTSD. This was hardly surprising. But Katherine suffered from the environmental illness (EI) also know as multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS) which makes perfect sense to how living in the cabin made her better.

I received this copy from the publisher through NetGalley in return for an honest review! ( )
  MaraBlaise | Apr 14, 2017 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Which is worse to live with – the toxic chemicals of modern living or the toxicity of a damaged psyche?

Katherine, whose body is shutting down, leaves the city to find a place to die alone, but instead finds herself feeling better in the wilderness. And then there’s Danny.

Too many things didn’t add up, too much implausibility, and too much talk of sex. Perhaps it works, if meant to be some sort of environmental parable. For me, though, this story just didn’t work. ( )
  countrylife | Apr 4, 2017 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
What a haunting book-a real taut novel of personalities colliding "In Wilderness". This book surpassed everything I could possibly have thought it was about. Georgia's Blue Ridge Mountains provide the setting for two people who separately go to live there on their own, to get away from their original lives. A woman who owns a successful advertising business becomes ill. She decides to abandon everything and go away into the wilderness to spend her remaining days of life, in a completely different way than how she has been living. She decides to buy a remote cabin and tract of wilderness land in Georgia's Blue Ridge Mountains, in 1966 and live off the land, so to speak, eating only sparsely and of good natural foods that she learns to raise. In the process, she starts to change from dying, to a better health! Her land & cabin are 2 miles in from the nearest road, so she must carry in everything she needs. Also, in the land next to her tract, is another tract of land with an old abandoned mansion, in which a Vietnam Vet has escaped upon his discharge, where he intends to also live off the land, smoke pot and be left alone with his personal demons, in a natural sense. He discovers her long before she discovers him. He is delighted to have someone to watch & obsess over without disclosure of his presence, which obviously can only last so long. Their lives could not be more different. When she is finally confronted by him, she does something the reader is more than likely not to think of. The author alternates each chapter to the thoughts of the 2 individuals. This book constantly surprised me. It is really beautiful in how it is written. ( )
  CheryleFisher | Oct 19, 2016 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
A dying woman, an isolated cabin and an angry, bitter young man converge in Diane Thomas' engrossing novel. Danny and Katherine's relationship begins with voyeurism(on his part) grudging assistance (on her part) with the end result being a lot of sexual encounters both Katherine and Danny are psychologically wounded and the wounds are what they try to heal in each other. They are both so emotionally fragile that trust, such a necessary component in any relationship, is difficult to come by for them. Add Danny's anger, possessiveness to the point of obsession and need to flee when things become overwhelming and it all adds to a relationship doomed from the start. This is very well written at times creepy but always entertaining. ( )
  cdyankeefan | Aug 30, 2016 |
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She will remember this moment all her life, she is sure of it.
“Small wonder skeletons all grin.” p 47
“In her safe shell she rides the night from sound to sound.” p 74.
“A pack of wild dogs bayed down in the valley, a moiling, frantic sound of lives gone suddenly so strange they couldn’t figure out which way to run.” p 39.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0804176957, Hardcover)

For readers of Amanda Coplin and Chris Bohjalian, In Wilderness is a suspenseful and literary love story—a daring and original novel about our fierce need for companionship and our enduring will to survive.
In the winter of 1966, Katherine Reid receives a shattering diagnosis. Debilitated by a terminal and painful illness, Katherine moves to an isolated cabin deep in Georgia’s Appalachian Mountains. There, with little more than a sleeping bag, a tin plate, and a loaded gun, she plans to spend the few short months remaining to her in beautiful but desolate solitude. Her isolation brings her peace, until the day she realizes the woods are not as empty as she believed. A heartbeat in the darkness. Breathing in the night. Katherine is not alone. Someone else is near, observing her every move.
Twenty-year-old Vietnam veteran Danny lives in the once-grand mansion he has dubbed “Gatsby’s house.” Haunted by the scars of war and enclosed by walls of moldering books, he becomes fixated on Katherine. What starts as cautious observation grows to an obsession. When these two lost souls collide, the passion that ignites between them is all-consuming—and increasingly dangerous.
Suffused with a stunning sense of character and atmosphere, Diane Thomas’s intimate voice creates an unforgettable depiction of the transformative power of love, how we grieve and hope, and the perilous ways in which we heed and test our hearts.
Advance praise for In Wilderness
“A harrowing exploration of desire and obsession, this novel sends two people into a physical and psychological wilderness that becomes stranger and more terrifying the deeper they go.”—#1 New York Times bestselling author Christina Baker Kline

“In a mad, haunting, dreamlike story of love, obsession, and wildness, Diane Thomas mixes elegant prose with raw emotion. This novel is unforgettable.”—William Landay, New York Times bestselling author of Defending Jacob
In Wilderness is an often harrowing story of a love affair between two damaged people, but it is also a paean to the healing powers of nature. Diane Thomas has written an extraordinary novel filled with both darkness and light.”—Ron Rash, PEN/Faulker Award finalist and New York Times bestselling author of Serena and The Cove

“Diane Thomas writes like a woman in a fever dream, clashing two wasted, achingly lonely souls together to create sparks that become an all-consuming wildfire. The desolate inner landscapes of Danny and Katherine stand in stark opposition to the beauty of the natural world that Thomas so expertly evokes, and I found myself riveted as they stumbled in their broken way toward connection and their own humanity. Heartbreaking, bold, relentless, and intensely erotic, In Wilderness is the work of a true original.”—Joshilyn Jackson, New York Times bestselling author of Someone Else’s Love Story
“The story—the writing—stands out as some of the most original and dynamic work I’ve ever read. In Wilderness is an intensely powerful cat-and-mouse love story as gorgeous and brutal as its Appalachian mountain setting. I devoured every word.”—Carla Buckley, author of The Deepest Secret
“Utterly compelling . . . Thomas brings a Zen-like sensibility to her descriptions of the natural world and to the simple everyday matters of living. The two main characters are delineated with a similar keen precision.”—Vicki Lane, author of Under the Skin

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:24:23 -0400)

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