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In the Woods by Tana French
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In the Woods (2007)

by Tana French

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Dublin Murder Squad (1)

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4,6983291,009 (3.76)375
Recently added byDreamchen, pfflyernc, Helene123, brienne, Mikedunb, becker, flashMinor, private library, tennwisc
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» See also 375 mentions

English (316)  Spanish (5)  German (4)  Dutch (3)  Danish (1)  All languages (329)
Showing 1-5 of 316 (next | show all)
DH and I are going to Ireland next year, so I thought I would read some fiction set there just to get a taste of the culture, writing, etc. What a novel to start with!

As a child, Dublin Detective Rob Ryan was the only witness (and surviving victim) of a crime that claimed his two best friends. Too bad he remembers only a few bits and pieces of it. Now, 20 years later, a girl has been sexually assaulted and murdered in the same remote place--are the crimes connected? It's up to Ryan and his partner Cassie to comb through the threads to uncover the truth. Along the way, we get class differences, city politics, archaeology, and psychological twists and turns.

I have to admit I didn't see the end(s) coming, although I did figure out one small piece of it. In this debut novel, French does a wonderful job of capturing both places and times, past and present, and her characters are flawed and believable. Highly recommended, but be in a good emotional place when you read it--that's all I'm going to say.

Now, on to the other books in her series! ( )
  pfflyernc | Jul 25, 2014 |
I read this book because it was recommended to me based on my love of Gillian Flynn novels . I could never find myself sucked in and engrossed by this storyline. It seemed to drag on and I was uniterested in the blossoming romantic relationship between the lead detectives. I generally read a book I love over the course of a few days. I let this book linger around for almost a month because it just never grabbed me. I much prefer quicker paced thriller/mystery novels with little to no effort wasted on romance. ( )
  jessicastatzer | Jul 8, 2014 |
I was expecting a good first installment of this detective series based on the reviews and certainly got that. The plot held me interest the entire way. Even when I began to unravel the mystery, I still wasn't privy to what the end result would be until the very end. What I hadn't counted on was the depth of French's story telling - most especially the way she brought her principal characters to life. In addition, French sprinkles in enough of Irish life to provide a unique setting to the series without going overboard and taking away from the story itself. I completely enjoyed In the Woods and have already picked up the next book in the series. A must read for fans of detective series. ( )
  csayban | Jun 30, 2014 |
Detective Rob Ryan and his partner, Cassie Maddox, are two up-and-coming detectives on the Dublin Murder Squad. But Ryan is hiding a secret about his past: his real name is Adam Ryan, and when he was 12 years old, his two best friends vanished in the woods of Knocknaree without a trace. Ryan was even with them at the time, but he has no memory of what happened to them -- or why they disappeared while he was found. Ryan has apparently done a good job of recovering from this trauma and moving on with his life, but he is deeply shaken when he and Cassie are assigned to another case in Knocknaree, where a young girl has been murdered. As Ryan returns to his hometown and is confronted with memories he didn't even know he had, he wonders whether the girl's murder is connected to his own past. Ultimately, Ryan knows that this case will have deep personal importance for him -- but will it make his career or destroy it?

I'm having a hard time collecting my thoughts on this book. At first I thought I wasn't going to like it at all -- in fact, I almost gave up after the flowery prologue -- but eventually I got completely sucked in. The strongest aspect of the book, for me, was the relationship between Ryan and Cassie. Ryan isn't a particularly likable character, but the bond between him and Cassie is so strong that you can't help feeling he must be a pretty good guy after all. The way this relationship evolves and changes throughout the book kept me riveted. The novel's narrative structure also creates a lot of suspense: Ryan is the narrator, and he says right from the start that he tells lies. So I was constantly wondering whether he was lying about certain things, and I became really invested in both mysteries as a result. That said, the book's ending drove me a little crazy: some things made me sad, others frustrated me, and others I actually liked a lot. So I'm still undecided about this book; but I am glad I read it, and I will certainly be reading The Likeness at some point as well!
  christina_reads | Jun 30, 2014 |
This book was just not my style. I can see how some would love it. Good writing and an excellent reader. I got tired of it in the middle. I didn't really like the atmosphere. The central character does a lot of soul searching, but it didn't seem like he learned much. To me the ending was less than satisfactory. Very true to life, but I prefer escape in my fiction. I like to see all the ends tied up, though I know that is unrealistic in the real world. I would recommend this to anyone that likes to see real stories inside the police department. ( )
  njcur | May 16, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 316 (next | show all)
Although she overburdens the traditional police-procedural form with the weight of romance, psychological suspense, social history and mythic legend, she sets a vivid scene for her complex characters, who seem entirely capable of doing the unexpected. Drawn by the grim nature of her plot and the lyrical ferocity of her writing, even smart people who should know better will be able to lose themselves in these dark woods.
 

» Add other authors (12 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Tana Frenchprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Crossley, StevenNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
"Probably just somebody's nasty black poodle. But I've always wondered...What if it really was Him, and He decided I wasn't worth it?"--Tony Kushner, A Bright Room Called Day
Dedication
For my father, David French,
and my mother, Elena Hvostoff-Lombardi
First words
Picture a summer stolen whole from some coming-of-age film set in small-town 1950s.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0143113496, Paperback)

As dusk approaches a small Dublin suburb in the summer of 1984, mothers begin to call their children home. But on this warm evening, three children do not return from the dark and silent woods. When the police arrive, they find only one of the children gripping a tree trunk in terror, wearing blood-filled sneakers, and unable to recall a single detail of the previous hours.

Twenty years later, the found boy, Rob Ryan, is a detective on the Dublin Murder Squad and keeps his past a secret. But when a twelve-year-old girl is found murdered in the same woods, he and Detective Cassie Maddox—his partner and closest friend—find themselves investigating a case chillingly similar to the previous unsolved mystery. Now, with only snippets of long-buried memories to guide him, Ryan has the chance to uncover both the mystery of the case before him and that of his own shadowy past.

Richly atmospheric, stunning in its complexity, and utterly convincing and surprising to the end, In the Woods is sure to enthrall fans of Mystic River and The Lovely Bones. And look for French's new mystery, Broken Harbor, for more of the Dublin Murder Squad.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:25:58 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

Detective Rob Ryan and his partner, Cassie Maddox, investigate the murder of a 12-year-old girl near a Dublin suburb. The case resonates with similarities to a murder committed twenty years before that involved two children and the young Ryan.

» see all 9 descriptions

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