IN THE WOODS by Tana French

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.



There is graphic details of how the victim, who is a minor, was raped postmortem. Molestation is discussed throughout the book, and a rape scene is described.


Blood spatter described, as well as details regarding the positioning of the victim's body.


Several suspenseful scenes, and the suggestion of supernatural elements.


Way too many f bombs in this one!


Chainsmoking and drinking throughout the book. Drug abuse mentioned.

Alternative Lifestyle/LGBT:

Naughty Little Tidbits: "Hollywood" Teenage Behaviour, Disturbing Behaviour, Disrespect Loving Authority Figures, Bad Role Model


Writing Style:


Main Characters:


Would I recommend this book for...

Comments: This is the first book in Tana French's Dublin Murder Squad series. I really enjoyed reading a story set in Dublin, Ireland. I found it interesting to see the subtle differences in language, and French has a unique writing style. She has created some intriguing characters in this story, and I was impressed by how my feelings toward the characters changed as the story progressed. In fact, I grew to dislike the main character intensely by the end of the story, and had little sympathy for what happened to him. I did not find the ending satisfying, but perhaps the conclusion I'm hoping for is found somewhere else in the series? I would recommend this book to those who love thrillers, but be aware that there are possible trauma triggers.

Speak Your Mind


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.