Concise book review No. 8: “In the Woods” (Contains spoilers. And run-on sentences.)

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I didn’t read a single bad book last year, and the streak remains intact with Tana French’s “In the Woods,” narrated by Dublin homicide detective Rob Ryan, whose latest case, the murder of a twelve-year-old girl, takes him back to the woods where, as a child, his two best friends vanished; he was found covered in blood with no recollection of what had happened.

For those who don’t like ambiguity, I will tell you that the disappearance of Rob’s friends remains unresolved, but this doesn’t detract from the story. Rob is a fully-drawn character who remains sympathetic as his life begins to unravel; his partner/closest friend, Cassie, who narrates the follow-up “The Likeness,” which I’ll be reading next, is also very likeable. Though the murder and its perpetrator are disturbing, it was the dissolution of Rob and Cassie’s friendship that I found most wrenching.

 

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