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Thursday, December 11, 2008

Review of Harlan Coben’s The Woods

I recently finished Harlan Coben’s The Woods. It started very strong, so much so that I was reading at a rate that I have rarely achieved since being an English major. Honestly, I’m not completely sure why I slowed down, but my interest level did pick up again at the end of the novel.

The plot centers around Paul Copeland, a county prosecutor with some political aspirations who is suddenly pulled into a murder case tied to his past. As a camp counselor, he was on duty when four campers – including his sister – snuck into the woods. Two were found murdered, and the others were presumed dead.

From there The Woods follows the fairly typical popular novel format. It has some decent twists and turns, certainly nothing literary, and a worthwhile ending. What made it a cut above other such novels was an interesting character in Copeland along the lines of the protagonist in the Spenser for Hire series, though this wanes a bit and is likely what slowed me down, and an ending that is legit. The author brings the reader to the ending as opposed to dropping in major facts out of nowhere at the end.

If you enjoy these type of novels – plot heavy, but nothing too heavy - this is a good option.