Thanks to NetGalley, Penguin Books UK and Lesley Pearse for this copy!
Fifteen-year-old Maisy Mitcham and her twin brother Duncan lose their mother to an asylum one night in 1960.
The twins are sent to their grandmother’s country house, Nightingales. Cold and distant, she leaves them to their own devices, to explore and to grow. That is until the day Duncan doesn’t come home from the woods.
With their grandmother seeming to have little interest in her grandson’s disappearance, and the police soon giving up hope, it is left to Maisy to discover the truth. And she will start with Grace Deville. A woman who lives alone in the wood, about whom rumours abound . . .
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I’m reviewing The Woman in the Wood by Lesley Pearse. Here are my thoughts:
^^ When Maisy Mitcham and her twin brother Duncan get sent away to live with their grandmother, after their mother is sent to an asylum, Duncan goes missing. What follows is a nightmare search to uncover Duncan’s last steps – all of which point to Grace Deville; the grumpy old woman in the wood of whom they befriended before Duncan’s disappearance. But is everything as it seems? What if the murderous stories about the woman in the wood are true? Could she know more than she lets on?
^^ Okay, I’ll hold my hands up and admit it, I’ve never read any of this author’s work and after reading up about her I’ve discovered she has a whole range of books out that do not easily fit to a defined genre. This is totally new to me!
^^ The Woman in the Wood is set in the 1960s postwar England, which added to its charm. Especially when you hear how the twins were neglected as they were growing up and their mother is just shipped off to an asylum.
^^ Because of the time period and the English postwar setting, the plot had a quaint, old-fashioned feel to it. Initially, I felt this lead to a slow start, but after the first third of the way in things really picked up and Maisy’s search for her missing brother moved the story forward at a much quicker pace.
^^ Lesley Pearse has an intriguing way of delving into her characters and pulling out their secrets. Hidden within I discovered lots of family drama with many layers (including romance), and an equally intriguing and thought-provoking mystery surrounding the woman in the wood.
^^ I must add their is some serious issues brought up in this book and a couple of brutal horror scenes that I didn’t expect, since the book was written so eloquently, almost like a fairy-tale. In fact, Hansel and Gretel are actually mentioned. So when these disturbing things were told it really packed a punch, I can tell you. Emotional!
Overall: I liked this book a lot and feel Lesley Pearse has a real talent for words. I’ll definitely look out for more of her books and maybe check out her backlist, too.
View all my reviews on Goodreads!
I’m also adding this to the 2017 British Books Challenge!
And also the 2017 NetGalley Challenge here —
Also, I just received my 10 book badge! Woot! LOL