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In the Woods by Tana French

April 29, 2013 by sdc
When the Just Desserts mystery fiction discussion group met on April 25, 2013, 16 of us discussed the multi-award-winning 2007 novel In the Woods by Tana French.

Whether or not you attended the actual meeting, you are  welcome to share your own thoughts and opinions about this book in a reply comment to this blog post, below.

For additional reminders about upcoming Just Desserts meetings and/or other announcements of interest to mystery  fans, don't forget to sign up for the Just Desserts e-mail list. Or, if you're logged into your account on Facebook, you can visit the Events page for the Lincoln City Libraries, and mark whether or not you plan to attend upcoming sessions of Just Desserts - this is a great way for you to help us promote this engaging discussion group! Our selections for future meetings are usually posted there months in advance.

What do you think of In the Woods by Tana French, set in Ireland?

Join us next on May 30th at the South Branch Library for a special discussion -- all participants are encouraged to read a volume in a NEW "cozy" or "amateur detective" series (that launched from 2011 to 2013), and share their impressions with the rest of the group!

Tagged in: Just Desserts, mystery, discussion group, book group, In the Woods, Tana French, Dublin Murder Squad,
Comments: 0

I Loved "In the Woods."

November 04, 2009 by PatLeach

In my reading life, I'm in the blissfully open season after I've read the current year's American Library Association Notable Books list, and before the next list is announced in January.  I've got a pretty substantial mental list of titles, but found myself foundering for a title.  So I took a look at a list from Amazon of the "Best of 2008." Indirectly, I found "In the Woods" by Tana French, because it was mentioned in the annotation for "The Likeness."  And yes, I borrowed it from the library.

LOVED it.  I like a suspenseful mystery, and enjoyed the contemporary Irish setting.  This story of a detective whose childhood included the unsolved disappearance of two friends and his own lack of memory regarding the incident, set a perfect stage. Bob Ryan gets called back to his hometown when a girl is found murdered, not far from where he himself was found all alone 20 years before.

The relationship between Bob and his partner, Cassie, creates much of the energy in this story. Bob narrates, and the one quibble I have with this book is the Gothic-like "If only I'd known..." statements. Well, I appreciate being told that things won't turn out perfectly, but I do find that repetitive refrain tiresome. It is with Cassie that things go especially badly.

I confess--when I read a mystery, I don't try to follow the clues and solve the case. I just wait for it to unfold. I sensed that French revealed the story in a way that made sense (and would have made sense to the over-achievers who expect to solve the mystery on their own), and she made use of Bob's blind spots for the reader to see what he would not.

This was just the kind of book I was seeking--I put off plenty of housework and even a few phone calls to friends and family to keep reading. 

Even if you're not usually a mystery reader, I might recommend this if you enjoy a story about people's relationships when they're put in a pressure cooker. It also has a feeling of those PBS and BBC Mystery series, where the detective and his/her assistant develop that relationship that propels the story into sublimity.

Tagged in: Good Reads, mysteries, In the Woods, Tana French,
Comments: 3

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