Ok, I know, it’s Sunday afternoon, and I read-a-thonned you all to death yesterday/this morning, and you don’t expect to hear from me until tomorrow morning, but I’m posting out of rotation due to my fluttery about In the Woods.
LET US TALK ABOUT THIS BOOK!!
Ok, for those of you who played along in the Read-a-thon OR woke up Sunday morning confused as to why I had 24 new posts and then read them all, you know that I read Tana French’s thriller In the Woods for, like twelve hours (mostly the dark ones) and that I spent much of it hunkered down next to my husband’s sleeping bulk because I was too scared to go read by myself in the room-with-windows.
So, when Rob was little, two of his friends vanished whilst the three of them frolicked in the woods and Rob was later found catatonic and covered in blood not his own. I know. Some twenty-five years later, he’s a murder detective and is sent to investigate the death of a child in his old neighborhood. His partner is the small, sprightly Cassie, and the two of them banter often.
And here’s the thing – it was awesome. Usually when an author (esp a young one) tries to be this fresh and sassy, they’re walking around naked. Fortunately in this case, the Emperor (Emperess?) has clothes. I give French an ‘exceeds expectations’ for writing style. As for the plot, most of it was all witty-banter-and-clues which, really, not scary. MOST OF THIS BOOK WAS NOT SCARY! But I don’t do well with dark, and I don’t do well with looming doom, and doom LOOMED from about page 7. So I was scared.
So, for those of you who don’t want to peruse my spoiler, I was all set to give In the Woods eight and half, maybe nine caterpillars, but I was totally dissatisfied with the end, so I would have to knock off, like, three.
Ok, now I’m going to spoiler the hell out of the book because I want to know your thoughts, so if you haven’t read it, go do so now! And then come back here and talk to me. SPOILER SPOILER SPOILER SPOILER!!!!
WTF? And we solve the murder and it was X and Y person and the end, let’s not touch the mystery of the missing children. THAT WAS WHAT WAS SCARING THE EVER-LIVING HELL OUT OF ME!!! Straight-up murder mysteries? Not a problem. Psychopaths? A little worse, but nothing I can’t handle. But I totally thought there was going to be this whole other mystical element to do with the missing kids and Rob’s memories and junk (what is UP with the parallel slashes on his shirt?), and THAT is what had me wetting myself. I was afraid for no reason!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I mean, everything else was stellar! The Rob-Cassie thing? Winsome! Charming! Occasionally over-the-top but in a self-aware, self-deprecating manner! And then the whole time, I’m all, if she makes this a love story I’m never reading another female author again. But then she did, and I was all, Rob and Cassie whyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy!? *sob, nose-blow* Because she did it right, and that is what actually happens in relationships. One or the other of you is too effed up to behave like an adult, and there aren’t always second chances.
I really, really liked ItW and I’m all set to like The Likeness (which, apparently, follows Cassie but does NOT touch the wood-children), but I feel a bit cheated. I think Trish and Jill are with me on this. Weigh in, folks.