The Woods by Harlan Coben: Book Review

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The Woods

3 Stars

Paul Copeland’s sister disappeared into the woods of their summer camp one night twenty years ago. The bodies of two of her friends were found. She wasn’t. Now, the past is surfacing and the mystery is begging to be solved.

Eh. Had this been my first Coben book, I would’ve loved it. As it is, this is my third or fourth and the whole thing felt like familiar territory. I’m not saying that it was just another book regurgitated with a different title, or even that it was unsurprising. But enough things had happened in other books that it just felt familiar. There were lots of twists and turns, some of them surprising, and I really didn’t see the very, very end coming. I feel like I should have, but I didn’t.

I liked Paul overall. But whenever he threw his prosecutor’s badge around to intimidate people, he lost big points from me. I’m not a fan of bullies.

That might be part of my problem with the book right there. I dislike bullies and they’re in here. I dislike rich people throwing their money at problems and that’s in here. I mostly dislike courtroom dramas and that’s in here. All that was missing, or at least not as evident, in the books of his that I did really like.

He mentions lots of songs in here that I want to check out. I have a feeling that this book actually has an awesome soundtrack!

This would be a good Coben to start with. If you love Coben, you’ll love this one. If you’re like me, and you mostly just kinda like the guy, you might be a little disappointed with how familiar this feels.

Reviewed November 15, 2010

Read an excerpt.

Find author Harlan Coben on his website, Facebook, and Twitter.

Buy The Woods at


Friday Flashback Reviews are a weekly feature here on The Introverted Reader. These are old reviews I wrote on GoodReads. Thanks to Angieville and her Retro Friday Reviews for the inspiration and encouragement!

I have an affiliate relationship with Malaprop’s, my local independent bookstore located in downtown Asheville, NC; and Better World Books. I will receive a small commission at no cost to you if you purchase books through links on my site.

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1 Comment

  1. I love Coben so sorry to hear this one is not as good as some of his, I read it too and have to agree.

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