Regular price: £12.99

Membership details Membership details
  • A 30-day trial plus your first audiobook, free
  • 1 credit/month after trial – choose any book, any price
  • Easy exchanges – swap any book you don’t love
  • Keep your audiobooks, even if you cancel
  • Free, unlimited access to Audio Shows
  • After your trial, Audible is just £7.99/month
OR
In Basket

Summary

When he was twelve years old, Adam Ryan went playing in the woods one day with his two best friends. He never saw them again. Their bodies were never found, and Adam himself was discovered with his back pressed against an oak tree and his shoes filled with blood. He had no memory of what had happened. Twenty years on, Rob Ryan - the child who came back - is a detective in the Dublin police force. He's changed his name. No one knows about his past. Then a little girl's body is found at the site of the old tragedy and Rob is drawn back into the mystery. Knowing that he would be thrown off the case if his past were revealed, Rob takes a fateful decision to keep quiet but hope that he might also solve the twenty-year-old mystery of the woods.

©2007 Tana French (P)2008 Oakhill Publishing

More from the same

What members say

Average customer ratings

Overall

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    126
  • 4 Stars
    134
  • 3 Stars
    62
  • 2 Stars
    22
  • 1 Stars
    10

Performance

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    123
  • 4 Stars
    85
  • 3 Stars
    49
  • 2 Stars
    13
  • 1 Stars
    21

Story

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    110
  • 4 Stars
    101
  • 3 Stars
    52
  • 2 Stars
    18
  • 1 Stars
    10
Sort by:
  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Carol
  • Ashhurst, New Zealand
  • 19-10-14

Strange & pointless

Was In the Woods worth the listening time?

Not really.

Any additional comments?

The premise of the story is promising, and draws you in, but then it just goes on and on, goes nowhere, and dribbles out. Although the crime is solved, the back story for the central character - i.e. the child who survived - is left hanging. While the author probably had a reason for this, it is very unsatisfying as a listener as this what hooked me in the first place. Also, the narrator is awful. Even though the plummy BBC accent is explained, it really spoils the story. Generally, the strange intonations & inflections of the narrator change the meaning of sentences, and often leaves them hanging or as if they were meant to be questions. Specifically, his characterisation of the main suspect makes him sound like a moron.This is the second Tana French book I've listened to - I kept living in hope as it went on, but I should have learned the first time. I don't think I'll listen to any more.

8 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

I could not put it down

This was a refreshing book - seemingly ordinary and yet very intricate. The relationships are very believable and when it was finished I missed the characters. I also played in the woods when I was a child and it took me back there. I have just ordered another Tana French book to read on holiday.

11 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Dire narration

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

A more complete ending - either I missed something or the original mystery did not get resolved!
A different narrator - it was painful to listen to. The 'English' accent and intonation was all wrong and spoilt the whole book for me.

What was most disappointing about Tana French’s story?

The ending to the initial disappearance story. There wasn't one unless I fell asleep and missed it.

Who might you have cast as narrator instead of John McCormack?

Anyone! But ideally the Narrator of Broken Harbour, by the same Author, which was Hugh Lee.

Any additional comments?

Please check your narrators before releasing books in Audible as this was a disaster.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Alicia
  • Halstead, United Kingdom
  • 17-08-12

Feeling disappointed.

My review of this novel might be unfair, but the truth is that I was unable to get past more than a few chapters because the narrator made what had been a wonderfully gentle pace of plot in 'Broken Harbour' (different narrator), deadly dull. I found myself listening out for the next cliche while wishing I didn't have to listen to the dialogue between the main character and his new work partner.

Such a shame because I adored 'Broken Harbour' which was one of the best reads I've had. Not sure that I can risk my credits on giving Tana French another chance.

12 of 15 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Not as good as later books

I was impressed by the author's more recent books, Broken Harbour and Faithful Place, but felt that "In the Woods" less good. There's an interesting detective story in it but it's slowed down by too much self-indulgent literary descriptive stuff and wallowing in the visceral effects of shocks and disclosures on the chief character's digestive and nervous systems. I kept wanting to shout "get on with the story!" As par for the course the lead detectives are damaged by their pasts that impinge on the case but it does add to the interest. As is often the case in novels the authors appears to assume that doing an under-graduate course in psychology equips one to learn about and diagnose psychological and mental illness: it doesn't. Clinical psychology is a postgraduate qualification. I felt that the psychological explanation for the actions of one of the protagonists in the murder was far-fetched. I did finish the book but have to admit it was with relief.
The narrator is good.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Borbála
  • London, United Kingdom
  • 07-02-13

Brilliant thriller

This was one of the best choices I have made on Audible. Brilliantly written, excellent characters and dialogues. It was a joy to listen to, kept me on edge the whole time.



My only problem was with the narrator who was a bit annoying. I have never heard anyone speak like this. Not even the Queen pronounces individual words so carefully within a sentence, it just doesn't sound authentic. The accents are great though. When he switches to one the character suddenly comes alive and it doesn't sound like a narrator reading from a book anymore.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Clairemc
  • Wellingborough, United Kingdom
  • 16-01-13

A good listen.

I really enjoy Tana Woods books. Well written, good developed characters and a 'must finish' feel about them. My only gripe is that I always feel the story is never quite finished - unanswered questions too.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Great story but odd narrator

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

I would recommend this audiobook for the story, but the narrator was really off putting.

What aspect of John McCormack’s performance might you have changed?

He quite often spoke as if reading items from a shopping list and his intonation was bizarre at times, which made certain sentences sound incorrect or made them hard to understand. He also mispronounced a lot of words, at once point he was describing how a character smoothed out her skirt and pronounced it as "smooth-ed" as it was two separate words. I'm sure many people did not notice or care about this but it really irritated me and it distracted me from the story.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

No, it's much too long for that, but I did listen to the final few hours all in one go.

Any additional comments?

I felt the narrator did a really good job of distinguishing between characters and gave them each a unique voice. However although i will probably read or listen to more books in this series I think I would be put off from another book narrated by this person. I'm really surprised this wasn't picked up when it was being edited, it's almost constant throughout the book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

absolutely terrible

complete and utter pretentious nonsense. The plot well there is no plot. The narration on this audio is the most annoying I have ever had the misfortune of listening to. I would give it 0 stars if it would allow. This is a series I can now skip.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

could have been a five star

I like a good read and felt that Tana French may just deliver the right blend of intrigue and interest I enjoy. initially the setting was interesting

and her writing style fresh, but About a third of the way through I was a little puzzled about where this story was taking me: was it a murder mystery or an angst ridden story?..... it didn't seem to gel in places. Then at times I thought we may be getting somewhere but the most interesting characters were not fully formed and what I thought were clues to the plot really fizzled out disappointingly. however I won't give up because it feels as if this is a writer with much better to come.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Amazon Customer
  • 21-08-12

Don't miss this one, literary crime lovers...

Where does In the Woods rank among all the audiobooks you???ve listened to so far?

In the Woods is one of the best audiobooks I've listened to - partly because I love the story & the writing (I've actually read it before) - but also because it's very well read.

Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

The protagonist's back story is gripping & informs the present-day plot & main character's actions. Without giving anything away, the main character starts to lose the plot as past & present come together...

What does John McCormack bring to the story that you wouldn???t experience if you just read the book?

I usually prefer reading books but love to listen to audiobooks while driving or walking the dogs. One thing I don't like when listening to an audiobook is the (more old-fashioned) over-the-top storytelling style that quite a few readers have - almost like they're reading to children.

John McCormack reads in a more realist style, more like he's telling you the facts in a one-sided conversation. It draws you in. At the same time his voice is very clear & pleasant to listen to.

At first I thought his BBC accent was some sort of horrible mistake, as the character (told in first person) is Irish, but it emerges that he in fact (for an important reason) does have an English accent. It's a brilliant element of John McCormack's reading that his accent very subtly slides into a more Irish one as events unfold.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Many moving moments - & John McCormack doesn't overplay them - he's a subtle reader. Very effective.

Any additional comments?

The ending was almost ruined. As the narrator says his last words - voice low, atmospheric - a loud voice comes almost over his voice & intones 'Audible hopes you've enjoyed this program'. I needed a few beats to process what the ending was telling me - frustrating, & completely at odds with the style of book & the reading.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Margaret
  • 06-08-12

A nice start to the series

If you could sum up In the Woods in three words, what would they be?

Well worth listening.

What was one of the most memorable moments of In the Woods?

The quality of writing continued to impress me.

Did John McCormack do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

John McCormack was a good, not great, narrator (but I am fussy). Make sure you get this version rather than the one narrated by Steven Crossley if chronic mouth clicks and whistles give you the creeps.

Any additional comments?

The lovely Marian Keyes (via Twitter) often heaps praise on Tana French, so I thought I should give her a go. I wasn't disappointed. BUT although this is a series, the next books are about different characters, so there isn't an on-going story arc as such. The second book lost me with its rather far fetched story. This one, though, is very enjoyable, but beware, not every loose end is tied up.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Darja
  • 19-11-12

very suspensful story, annoying voice

Where does In the Woods rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

One of the best criminal thrillers, definitely. Keeps you on the edge of your chair and does it by elegant psychological means, not by resorting to guns and chases

Who would you have cast as narrator instead of John McCormack?

pretty much anyone. He takes some getting used to so that you even concentrate enough to understand what he says - Text-to-Voice in Kindle would be about as good. It gets better later in the book, though, so bear with him. The story is worth it!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Jaydeep
  • 17-09-16

An overly stretched short story

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

Chapters 20 till end (25) is the entire mystery and the whole read.

What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

Predictable and undramatic.

What three words best describe John McCormack’s voice?

Dull and monotonous. Needs lessons in pronunciation. Calling Urdu (oordu) Erdu????? Really? So high handedness and disregard

Did In the Woods inspire you to do anything?

Change the book

Any additional comments?

I'm thoroughly disappointed and completely misguided with Audible's recommendation of this book.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Mackenzie
  • 04-02-13

Give this a berth -- a wide one

Who ever wrote the blurb needs to be retired. Looked interesting but far too long and the dialogues are insulting to the Irish (they couldn't be that primitive). I fast-forwarded to the end to find out who did it and even that was a let down.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful