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The Girl in the Woods

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No. 1 international bestseller and Swedish crime sensation Camilla Läckberg's new psychological thriller featuring Detective Patrik Hedström and Erica Falck – irresistible for fans of Stieg Larsson and Jo Nesbø. A missing child When a four-year-old girl disappears in the woods just outside Fjällbacka, the community is horror-struck. Thirty years ago, a young girl went missin No. 1 international bestseller and Swedish crime sensation Camilla Läckberg's new psychological thriller featuring Detective Patrik Hedström and Erica Falck – irresistible for fans of Stieg Larsson and Jo Nesbø. A missing child When a four-year-old girl disappears in the woods just outside Fjällbacka, the community is horror-struck. Thirty years ago, a young girl went missing from the exact same spot, and was later discovered, murdered. A murder Back then, two teenage girls were found guilty of the killing. Could it really be a coincidence that one of the girls now a world-famous actress has just returned to Fjällbacka? Detective Patrik Hedström starts investigating, with his wife, bestselling crime writer Erica Falck, by his side. A community torn apart But as Patrik and Erica dig deeper, the truth becomes ever murkier, because it seems that everyone in the tight-knit community is hiding something. And soon, the residents must confront the fact that they could be harbouring a murderer in their midst ...


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No. 1 international bestseller and Swedish crime sensation Camilla Läckberg's new psychological thriller featuring Detective Patrik Hedström and Erica Falck – irresistible for fans of Stieg Larsson and Jo Nesbø. A missing child When a four-year-old girl disappears in the woods just outside Fjällbacka, the community is horror-struck. Thirty years ago, a young girl went missin No. 1 international bestseller and Swedish crime sensation Camilla Läckberg's new psychological thriller featuring Detective Patrik Hedström and Erica Falck – irresistible for fans of Stieg Larsson and Jo Nesbø. A missing child When a four-year-old girl disappears in the woods just outside Fjällbacka, the community is horror-struck. Thirty years ago, a young girl went missing from the exact same spot, and was later discovered, murdered. A murder Back then, two teenage girls were found guilty of the killing. Could it really be a coincidence that one of the girls now a world-famous actress has just returned to Fjällbacka? Detective Patrik Hedström starts investigating, with his wife, bestselling crime writer Erica Falck, by his side. A community torn apart But as Patrik and Erica dig deeper, the truth becomes ever murkier, because it seems that everyone in the tight-knit community is hiding something. And soon, the residents must confront the fact that they could be harbouring a murderer in their midst ...

30 review for The Girl in the Woods

  1. 4 out of 5

    Roman Clodia

    A complicated story that shows off Lackberg's successful mix of soap opera and crime: the murder of a child in the past, a similar crime in the present, out of control teenagers, and the almost obligatory insertion of a group of Syrian refugees struggling to be accepted in Sweden. Alongside all this, regular characters argue, start dating, get married and juggle personal lives with young children. The pacing isn't quite right as everything unwinds slowly with attention to detail, only to suddenly A complicated story that shows off Lackberg's successful mix of soap opera and crime: the murder of a child in the past, a similar crime in the present, out of control teenagers, and the almost obligatory insertion of a group of Syrian refugees struggling to be accepted in Sweden. Alongside all this, regular characters argue, start dating, get married and juggle personal lives with young children. The pacing isn't quite right as everything unwinds slowly with attention to detail, only to suddenly speed up to a rushed climax. And the insertion of a seventeenth century story didn't work for me, causing me to skim those sections, short as they are. Nevertheless, this is intelligent crime writing built around characters we have come to know well and care about.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede

    Dual review with Swedish first and then English! SWEDISH REVIEW Häxan är den senaste boken i Fjällbacka serien. Tro det eller ej, men jag hade faktiskt aldrig läst någon bok i serien innan jag läste denna. Men jag tyckte att handlingen verkade så spännande och bestämde mig för att testa serien genom att läsa denna bok. Nu är böcker med barnamord något av det jobbigaste som finns att läsa och det var definitivt jobbigt att sitta med vetskapen att Linnea var död medan skallgångskedjan pågick, m Dual review with Swedish first and then English! SWEDISH REVIEW Häxan är den senaste boken i Fjällbacka serien. Tro det eller ej, men jag hade faktiskt aldrig läst någon bok i serien innan jag läste denna. Men jag tyckte att handlingen verkade så spännande och bestämde mig för att testa serien genom att läsa denna bok. Nu är böcker med barnamord något av det jobbigaste som finns att läsa och det var definitivt jobbigt att sitta med vetskapen att Linnea var död medan skallgångskedjan pågick, man vet vad som kommer att ske, men man hoppas ändå att man ska finna henne vid liv. Handlingen i denna bok är uppdelad i tre olika berättelser som alla är länkade med varandra. Dels för vi följa mordutredningen i nutid, men vi får även följa mordutredningen på flickan som dog 30 år innan. Sedan har Läckberg även lagt till ännu en berättelse om en kvinna som anklagas för att vara häxa 300 år tidigare. För att vara riktigt ärlig så fann jag berättelsen om häxan som en onödig del. Inte för att den var dålig, men det kändes som att läsa en helt annan bok när berättelsen växlande över till häxberättelsen. Visst har berättelsen en koppling till den nutida berättelsen, men det känns ändå som om boken hade varit bättre utan den. Dock gjorde häxberättelsen mig nyfiken på om fler generationer påverkades av vad som skedde på 1600-talet. Häxan var intressant, tragiskt och stundtals även roande mitt i allt det hemska tack vare en knäpp polischef och en krävande svärmor som ska gifta om sig. Slutet var hemskt tragiskt och jag tycker att boken mycket bra speglar det moderna svenska samhället med mobbning, rasism och utanförskap. Speciellt en scen var så typiskt svenskt, när en man klagar på alla invandrare i Sverige och det är därför han har flyttat till Spanien. Jag är oerhört glad att jag tog mig tid att läsa denna bok och ser fram emot att läsa de tidigare publicerades böckerna! Tack Bokförlaget Forum for recensionsexemplaret! ENGLISH REVIEW Tragic memories are brought back to life when four-year-old Linnea disappears from a farm outside Fjällbacka. Thirty years earlier a little girl disappeared from exactly the same farm and was later found murdered. That time, two thirteen-year-old girls were accused of killing the girl. They were found guilty in court, but escaped prison because of their age. After that, one of them lived a quiet life in Fjällbacka. The other has just returned for the first time since the event, now as a celebrated actor to portray Ingrid Bergman in a movie to be recorded in the neighborhood. The people of Fjällbacka search for Linnea, and eventually, they find her. Nude, next to the same forest lake where the first girl was found. The horror spreads in the small society. Can more girls be in danger? Patrik Hedström thinks it seems farfetched, but he and his colleagues at the Tanumshed police start to investigate whether there are any similarities between the two cases. To help them, they get Erica Falck, who has long been working on a book about the old murder. The investigation opens ups many wounds, and the inhabitants' fear of the unknown has terrible consequences. ********** The Witch is the latest book in the Fjällbacka series. Believe it or not, but I hade never read any book in the series before I read this. But the story seemed interesting and I decided to test the series by reading this book. Now, books with children being murdered are some of the hardest to read and it was definitely hard to read with the knowledge that Linnea was dead while they searched for her, I knew what's going to happen, but I still hoped they would find her alive. The book is divided into three different stories, which are linked to each other. We are following the murder investigation today, but we also follow the murder investigation of the girl who died 30 years earlier. Läckberg has also added another story about a woman accused of being a witch 300 years earlier. To be honest, I found the story about the witch an unnecessary part. Not because it was bad, but it felt like reading a completely different book when the story shifted to the witch story. Sure, the story has a connection to the present story, but it still feels like the book had been better without it. However, the witch story made me curious if more generations were affected by what happened in the 17th century. The book was interesting, tragical and even occasionally funny in the midst of all the horrors thanks to a not so bright police chief and Erica Falck's demanding mother-in-law who is planning to get remarried. The end was terribly tragic and I think the book very well reflects the modern Swedish society with bullying, racism, and segregation. Especially a scene was so typical Swedish when a man complains about all the immigrants in Sweden and that's why he has moved to Spain. I'm very pleased that I took the time to read this book and look forward to reading the previously published books! Thanks Bokförlaget Forum for the review copy!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Ana

    This book kind of snuck up on me and took me by surprise. I’ve read and watched so many murder mystery’s and it’s hard to find one that’s not predictable. I really did love this one. First what can be seen is parting the book in three different stories, and if two of them seem to have something in common from the beginning, the third one is seemingly not connected at all. And it’s like that to the very end. The main story is full of various plots, that happen to be more and more connected with e This book kind of snuck up on me and took me by surprise. I’ve read and watched so many murder mystery’s and it’s hard to find one that’s not predictable. I really did love this one. First what can be seen is parting the book in three different stories, and if two of them seem to have something in common from the beginning, the third one is seemingly not connected at all. And it’s like that to the very end. The main story is full of various plots, that happen to be more and more connected with each other and complicated in the process of reading. It’s not only a crime story. It tells also about different things, like love of characters, growth one but also the first one, their lives, and how cruel can teenagers be. The author plaited as well a political situation - plot of refugees and how they are seen in Sweden. The length of book and various plots can not be interessant for everyone. For someones it can be even boring, but for me it was absorbing and it kept me in tension, so I had to know how it would continue and what tracks the police would find. The ending is just so great and emotional and explosive. I shed a few tears.. I definitively recommend this book to all of you! 

  4. 5 out of 5

    Bruce Hatton

    Thirty years ago a 4-year old girl went missing from her farm home and was later discovered murdered. Two teenage girls were convicted of the murder but both are now free again. Then another 4-year old disappears from the same farm. Of the previous novels I’ve read in the Fjällbacka series featuring Patrik Hedström and Erika Falck there are a couple I really liked, the rest I wasn’t crazy about. This one, I guess falls somewhere in the middle. It’s a very long novel with many characters – some no Thirty years ago a 4-year old girl went missing from her farm home and was later discovered murdered. Two teenage girls were convicted of the murder but both are now free again. Then another 4-year old disappears from the same farm. Of the previous novels I’ve read in the Fjällbacka series featuring Patrik Hedström and Erika Falck there are a couple I really liked, the rest I wasn’t crazy about. This one, I guess falls somewhere in the middle. It’s a very long novel with many characters – some not too distinctive – and jumps back and forth in time a lot, even back to 1671. As such, I found it difficult to follow at times and had somewhat lost interest before the ending. As a study of a community in a state of shock, suspicion and fear it was very convincing. As a murder mystery it left a lot to be desired.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Cheryl

    I found this book went into a lot of extra detail that I personally didn't care for. I usually quite enjoy Camilla's work, looking forward to her next novel, but this one just seemed to drag on. I found this book went into a lot of extra detail that I personally didn't care for. I usually quite enjoy Camilla's work, looking forward to her next novel, but this one just seemed to drag on.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Amanda

    I have been excited about this book since the moment I finished reading the 9th book, a couple of days after it was released in 2014. That day I promised myself not to read this book as quickly because having to wait years to find out the answer of the cliffhanger is ridiculous. But here I am, once again I finished the book less than 24h after I started reading it on its release date. I am impressed by how Läckberg still has me hooked like this 10 books into the series. Onto my actual thoughts o I have been excited about this book since the moment I finished reading the 9th book, a couple of days after it was released in 2014. That day I promised myself not to read this book as quickly because having to wait years to find out the answer of the cliffhanger is ridiculous. But here I am, once again I finished the book less than 24h after I started reading it on its release date. I am impressed by how Läckberg still has me hooked like this 10 books into the series. Onto my actual thoughts on the book. Because of all the different stories the pace was a bit slower in the beginning, but I didn't mind because the stories and characters were so interesting and I enjoyed slowly getting to know them. I loved how all of the stories intertwined towards the end of the book. I especially loved reading about the 1600s and the witches. I have always been interested in the Swedish witch trials and I was beyond excited when I found out that would be a part of this book and I was not disappointed. The other stories were heartbreaking and tragic and I felt so sorry for so many of the characters. In my world Helen and Marie reunite after Helen's time in prison and mourn the loss of their children and finally get to be together again like they've always wanted.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Mariska Rabie

    I bought the book because it had high praises on the cover; I have never read other works by Ms. Lackberg. Soon after starting the book, it felt that there are just too many characters and side stories introduced - almost too many to keep up with. Each time the story returned to a character, I thought, "Who are they again?" I don't have problems with concentration - in the author's defence, I didn't read the book in one sitting (I read this during my daily commute and sometimes not even every da I bought the book because it had high praises on the cover; I have never read other works by Ms. Lackberg. Soon after starting the book, it felt that there are just too many characters and side stories introduced - almost too many to keep up with. Each time the story returned to a character, I thought, "Who are they again?" I don't have problems with concentration - in the author's defence, I didn't read the book in one sitting (I read this during my daily commute and sometimes not even every day). Even so, I never felt that any of the characters were decently introduced, given a deep background, or were really properly explored or developed for me to care enough about them. The only thing that kept me reading is to find out who actually committed the murders, and despite this, I was skipping paragraphs after I got about halfway. Tedious read. Superficial characters. I wasted my time.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Gianluca Buccarella

    Crime stories dumbed down for the new generations. Agatha Christie, Conan Doyle and Georges Simenon please forgive Camilla Lackberg. The policemen are as dumb as they come. They search houses and miss evidence, they have second thoughts or trails to follow but dismiss them because they have better things to do (i.e. attending weddings or getting drunk), they keep repeating the same mistakes without flinching and, as this wasn't enough, the whole premise of the book is based on the worst police w Crime stories dumbed down for the new generations. Agatha Christie, Conan Doyle and Georges Simenon please forgive Camilla Lackberg. The policemen are as dumb as they come. They search houses and miss evidence, they have second thoughts or trails to follow but dismiss them because they have better things to do (i.e. attending weddings or getting drunk), they keep repeating the same mistakes without flinching and, as this wasn't enough, the whole premise of the book is based on the worst police work EVER, so bad that it's completely unbelievable. It's easy to write a criminal story when all the mystery and intrigue comes from the police making blatant mistakes over and over again and not from the complexity of the plot itself. And then the most annoying thing of all: Lackberg writes in 2-pages paragraphs and changes point of view (and storyline) all the time like a kid with ADHD. She jumps around so fast it took me half the book to memorize all the names and characters and what the hell their problem was. Half the storylines are basically pointless anyway and have only a remote link with the main story. Anybody who finds this good, they must have never read a classic whodunnit story. 5 days reading 700 hundred pages that I will never ever get back. I can't believe Lackberg has the protagonists of this disappointment as returning characters in a series of books because they are probably the flattest and most uninteresting characters of the whole novel (and it's no easy feat). Avoid.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Elaine Tomasso

    I would like to thank Netgalley and HarperCollins UK, HarperFiction for an advance copy of The Girl in the Woods, the tenth novel set in Fjällbacka, Sweden to feature detective Patrik Hedstrom and his true crime writer wife, Erika Falck. When four year old Nea Berg goes missing from her home alarm bells ring because she is missing from the same farm where four year old Stella Strand was murdered 32 years previously. Two teenagers were convicted of Stella's murder, based on their retracted confess I would like to thank Netgalley and HarperCollins UK, HarperFiction for an advance copy of The Girl in the Woods, the tenth novel set in Fjällbacka, Sweden to feature detective Patrik Hedstrom and his true crime writer wife, Erika Falck. When four year old Nea Berg goes missing from her home alarm bells ring because she is missing from the same farm where four year old Stella Strand was murdered 32 years previously. Two teenagers were convicted of Stella's murder, based on their retracted confessions. Helen has always lived in the area but Marie became a famous film star and is back to make a film. Is it coincidence, are they involved or is there something more sinister involved. I thoroughly enjoyed the second half of the novel where the plot becomes absorbing and starts to make sense. I found the first half didn't engage my attention and was easy to put down in favour of doing something else. I don't particularly enjoy novels where each chapter has several different points of view with only a new paragraph to denote a fresh viewpoint. Add in to this mix chapters which go back to the "Stella Case" and the weird narrative of Elin Jonsdotter set in 1671 which has no real bearing on current events except as an ironic footnote and it becomes a very choppy read with little sense of obvious direction. On the other hand the novel has effective things to say about asylum seekers, racism and the cultural differences. There isn't much new in what Ms Lackberg has to say but she manages to say it in a practical way. She also tackles bullying and I must admit that I found some of the scenes hard to read at the cruelty of teenagers but sadly I didn't find them unbelievable. Teenagers always seem to be able to spot a victim and pile on more pressure. I'm not sure I found the solution overly convincing but it's not improbable. As usual the novel is full of Erika and Patrik's domestic life. They have a loving relationship, reinforced with close family ties. I suspect that Ms Lackberg brings many of her own frustrations to Erika's character - the difficulty of writing and finding me time with three young children. It makes a welcome diversion from the difficulty of the main investigation. The Girl in the Woods is a novel of two halves which is worth sticking with. 3.5*

  10. 4 out of 5

    Jenni Boyd

    An excerpt from the opening of the book. The water rippled gently around her, the surface disturbed only when a dragonfly occasionally landed, spreading tiny rings in its wake. The transformation had begun and gradually she would become one with the woods and the water. If no one found her, nature would run its usual course until she became part of it. So far no one knew she was gone. Some reviewers stated that the book had far to many characters that made the story difficult to follow. At first I An excerpt from the opening of the book. The water rippled gently around her, the surface disturbed only when a dragonfly occasionally landed, spreading tiny rings in its wake. The transformation had begun and gradually she would become one with the woods and the water. If no one found her, nature would run its usual course until she became part of it. So far no one knew she was gone. Some reviewers stated that the book had far to many characters that made the story difficult to follow. At first I had to agree with this point of view, as there are three different components to the story. The present day, in Fjalbacka, in the country of Sweden, the same setting thirty years previous and Bohuslan 1671 a province of Sweden. The story is a complex one and definitely not for those wanting a light quick read. Very early in the story you understand the importance of the past and present day, but it was not until the very end that I understood the significance of another era 1671. The main focus of the story is about two young girls murdered, both four years old and found in the same place; only the crimes are thirty years apart. Two thirteen year old girls who originally confessed to the first crime and then later retracted their statement, just happened to be near the crime scene thirty years later when the second girl was found. Helen and Marie, now adults and mother’s themselves are immediately considered the prime suspects, but many of the towns people believe it to be someone from the refugee centre. Hatred towards the refugees, rumours and gossiping causes the town to deal with more tragedy. I found this book hard to put down as I wanted to learn who had killed these two little girls and why. As I progressed through the book I began to formulate who the perpetrator was, but then the story changed direction and I’d begin to doubt my initial assumptions. Needless to say the author kept me guessing, which I just loved. I highly recommend this book, it was worth every star and I will definitely be reading more of Camilla Lackberg’s books.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    Ever since "The Ice Princess", the first novel in the Fjallbacka series, I have been thrilled to follow Erika and Patrik as their characters and lives develop amid terrible cruelty and murder. Camilla Läckberg is a wonderful storyteller. I love to read crime fiction, but few authors understand that I also need a happy, friendly or family context to be able to digest such incomprehensible human behaviour as murder and violence. And if I am to read about atrocities, then the pleasant parallel story Ever since "The Ice Princess", the first novel in the Fjallbacka series, I have been thrilled to follow Erika and Patrik as their characters and lives develop amid terrible cruelty and murder. Camilla Läckberg is a wonderful storyteller. I love to read crime fiction, but few authors understand that I also need a happy, friendly or family context to be able to digest such incomprehensible human behaviour as murder and violence. And if I am to read about atrocities, then the pleasant parallel story needs to take shape and evolve in time. This is why Camilla Läckberg merits her place in my short list of favourite crime fiction authors, together with Louise Penny (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache series), Deborah Crombie (Duncan Kincaid & Gemma James series) and, to some extent, Elizabeth George (Inspector Lynley series). If you know of any other series like these, where there is compassion and affection to counterbalance the brutality of murder mysteries, I'd really love to hear about them!

  12. 4 out of 5

    Essi Johanna

    My first Läckberg. Not impressed. Way too long, too many plots some of which seem totally irrelevant and glued on, like the one about asylum seekers. Worst of all is thoug that the police and the way they work don´t seem credible at all.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Chitra Ahanthem

    Swedish Crime Writer Camilla Lackberg's book series featuring Patrik Hedström a police detective and a crime writer Erica Falck who we first meet as Patrik's partner  and later, his wife Erica Falck is a MUST read if you love crime fiction with slow thrills and back stories of characters that are linked to the crime being featured in the books. When you pick up a book from Lackberg's series, you are not just there for the blood and the gore or the suspense of who is the criminal but also for well Swedish Crime Writer Camilla Lackberg's book series featuring Patrik Hedström a police detective and a crime writer Erica Falck who we first meet as Patrik's partner  and later, his wife Erica Falck is a MUST read if you love crime fiction with slow thrills and back stories of characters that are linked to the crime being featured in the books. When you pick up a book from Lackberg's series, you are not just there for the blood and the gore or the suspense of who is the criminal but also for well fleshed out narratives and themes that make you think along. From the first book in the series to this 10th; Lackberg has flagged gender roles, homophobia, parenting, postpartum depression, domestic violence.  While most investigative crime fiction is about the main investigating character, Lackberg brings other people into the spotlight: from the people behind crime fighters to supporting staff and to even the criminals themselves. This one starts with the disappearance of a 4 yr old girl whose dead body is found at the same site where thirty years earlier, another child had been found dead. The earlier case happens to be one in which two teen girls had accepted that they had the child killed, only to retract the statement later which leads it to remain unsolved as there was no evidence. The developments over the crime investigation are set against the backdrop of homosexuality, violence, racism and xenophobia. Fast paced page turners are something we are all familiar with. We have read one or more or lots of them. I certainly have read my fair share of crime fiction, noir, thrillers et el. Whenever I feel my reading pace has slowed down or when I feel I need something to break the intensity from literary fiction, I pick an investigating thriller. 

  14. 5 out of 5

    Filipa

    I had read that this was the best book of the series yet and I must say I very much disagree. In fact, I was almost tempted to give this one a 3-star rating. I gave it 4 stars because I do really love Camilla's writing and character development. This is the last published book of the Fjällbacka series and the lengthiest one as well. This book had all the things that make a mystery book enjoyable - it has rhythm, suspense and the perpetrator is not immediately obvious. One of the things I enjoy m I had read that this was the best book of the series yet and I must say I very much disagree. In fact, I was almost tempted to give this one a 3-star rating. I gave it 4 stars because I do really love Camilla's writing and character development. This is the last published book of the Fjällbacka series and the lengthiest one as well. This book had all the things that make a mystery book enjoyable - it has rhythm, suspense and the perpetrator is not immediately obvious. One of the things I enjoy most in Camilla's books is how she explores the characters' personality throughout the book. As you advance in the story, you find new layers of complexity in those characters and that, for me, is perfectly executed in all the books of the series. That's what being human means: nothing with people is black and white - there are many shades of grey in between those two colours and I believe it is the grey tonalities that define our humanity. Character development, then, is almost always my favourite part of Camilla's books. Then, of course, we have the main characters - Erica Falck and Patrik Hedström. These two are just delightful. I can't get enough of them: I adore seeing them develop as a couple and as a family and their relationship is what fills these books with joy. By now, in book #10, I also love other characters such as Martin, Gösta, Paula and Dan & Anna. But Erica and Patrik are definitely my favourite! That leaves the mystery part of the book, right? Well, I have to say that, sadly, it wasn't the part that excited me the most. I think this is becoming kind of a trend. I remember not being that surprised with the solution of the mystery (with the exception of book #9 in which I found only partially who the perpetrator was) and this one was no exception. I was able to predict three main findings in the story which, for me, were kind of obvious: (view spoiler)[ a) very early in the book, it was crystal clear to me that Marie and Helen were in love! b) I was certain that James was the one who had killed Stella - I wasn't sure how and why he had done it but I had the feeling that it could only be him and c) that Leif couldn't possibly have committed suicide. (hide spoiler)] It is true that I was still surprised to find out who Nea's killer was and all the motives behind both crimes but, if I'm being honest with myself, I was expecting to be blown away by the solving of these murders. I can think up a number of reasons why I was able to discover these three main elements before their time - by now, I am familiarised with the way Camila writes, I know how she will structure her story and moments of discovery and, well, I can't deny the commonplaces in this book such as (view spoiler)[ two girls falling in love in a small town 30 years ago, the military guy who's a loner, an authoritative man and loves guns more than his family, the fact that a police officer dies when he starts doubting the validity of his own thesis and starts digging up the past... (hide spoiler)] . All those elements put together were more than enough to give me some clues as to how to solve some of the missing pieces of the puzzle. To wrap up my review of this book, there were two things that bothered me with this book and I was genuinely not happy with (I will hide the first one so not to spoil the story for you guys): (view spoiler)[ a) the rape scene: I hate when authors use a rape scene to convey something but then do not deal with it properly. For me, killing Basse was not an appropriate way to deal with the fact that he raped Jessie. Even before killing him, the author describes in detail the rape but then, after the fact, it's like it never happened. There are only brief mentions but, other than that, it's like that event never occurred. What really, really bothers me though is the fact that no one will never know this happened - the rape, that monstrous act was effectively buried and that bothers me a lot. Especially, since for the author, it was more important to make the police officers find that two married men were gay and had taken intimate photographs of their moments alone than finding about the rape. (hide spoiler)] b) finally, it was interesting to read about the events that happened in 1672 - Camilla, you can obviously write an historical novel, you write beautifully, clearly and with emotion - but seriously...the connection to the present day story was pushing it a little bit.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Marcus Hobson

    There is a very clear formula followed by Camilla Lackberg in her Swedish thrillers. Erica Falck is a writer of true crime stories and her husband Patrik is a local police officer. Somehow, whenever Erica starts to write a new book about a crime in the past, some link turns up in the present in the little resort town of Fjallbacka on the beautiful west coast of Sweden. The Girl in the Woods has an added twist, a back story set in the 1670s in which a local woman is accused of being a witch. The l There is a very clear formula followed by Camilla Lackberg in her Swedish thrillers. Erica Falck is a writer of true crime stories and her husband Patrik is a local police officer. Somehow, whenever Erica starts to write a new book about a crime in the past, some link turns up in the present in the little resort town of Fjallbacka on the beautiful west coast of Sweden. The Girl in the Woods has an added twist, a back story set in the 1670s in which a local woman is accused of being a witch. The link between the past story and two modern day crimes is not particularly evident until the end. The Swedish title of this book is simply "The Witch" and that reflects that the ancient back story has a higher importance than we might otherwise give it. It is also useful to know as background how much of a part witches play in local Swedish folklore. Easter celebrations have elements that other parts of the world have on Halloween. Children dress up as witches and outdoor fires are lit around the country. This is the time that the witches fly to the equivalent of their AGM on the Blue Mountain and cavort with the Devil. The fires are lit to stop them from landing on your property. Back to our mystery. The police are called when a four-year-old girl cannot be found by her parents. Search parties are formed and the local community rallies around. The farm on which the little girl lives is the very same one where another four-year-old girl, Stella, was murdered thirty years before. No-one can ignore the coincidence, especially since one of the two women accused of that murder is back in town for the first time in 30 years. The police launch their enquiries as they wait for the forensics team to give them the cause of death and anything that might give them a lead. In Lackberg's normal style we flip back and forth between various story lines. Erica and her sister are arranging a hen party for Patrik's mother. One of the women accused of the 30-year-old murder is back in town making a movie. Her teenage daughter has been neglected but begins to find love with another mis-understood teen. The current racial tensions over refugees also feature heavily. Local hostility to the foreigners is running high and they are quickly accused of the latest murder. Police enquiries are getting nowhere, but Erica's research is throwing up doubts about that 30-year-old case. The chapters about the murder of Stella and the local witch are given their own chapter headings while we move back and forth between the other stories throughout each chapter. I read this book while I was staying in Fjallbacka and visited many of the surrounding villages, such as Tanumshede, which are mentioned in the book. This is where my wife spent her summer holidays as a child and where her mother now lives on a farm near a lake in the woods. Seeing the real locations and the lovely old church at Tanumshede helped to put a different set of images in my mind to those that I had constructed for myself reading Camilla Lackberg's earlier thrillers. The local landscape is beautiful in the middle of summer; full of tourists and holiday makers and so far from the grisly crimes and murders in the books.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Emma Crowley

    The number of crime thrillers I read are very few and far between, I know the genres I enjoy reading and tend to stick to them. I'd go as far to say I am very selective in what I read in the thriller genre as it wouldn't be my first port of call when choosing my next read but I drop everything when it comes to a new book from the incredible writer that is Camilla Lackberg. This new novel The Girl in the Woods is the tenth in the Fjallbacka series featuring true crime author Erica Falck and her d The number of crime thrillers I read are very few and far between, I know the genres I enjoy reading and tend to stick to them. I'd go as far to say I am very selective in what I read in the thriller genre as it wouldn't be my first port of call when choosing my next read but I drop everything when it comes to a new book from the incredible writer that is Camilla Lackberg. This new novel The Girl in the Woods is the tenth in the Fjallbacka series featuring true crime author Erica Falck and her detective husband Patrik Helstrom. It feels like the gaps between the appearance of each new book in the series have grown wider in recent years but that makes the publication of a new story all the more special. The books become a real treat to savour for as long as possible. This is something which I find hard to do given how much I love this series as once I begin I literally can't put down the book until I have discovered the eventual outcome - who did it and why? The Girl in the Woods is definitely what we would call a real page turner, you promise yourself one more chapter and then found you have read 100 pages or more. This book was quite long and there were certain parts I felt could have been narrowed down slightly but apart from that I loved every moment of this read. I desperately wanted to know the motivation for the killing of such a young innocent girl. What is so brilliant about Camilla Lackberg's books is that, yes there is a murder to be solved but that alongside this there are always little sub plots working away in the background. Some may be a continuation from previous stories of which I have been desperate to find out more, others are new strands that may eventually tie in with the murder. One thing is certain the major event that triggers an investigation is never clear cut. There is a lot of wading through finer detail and joining the dots that at first may not be apparent to either the police force or the detectives. That's what makes me enjoy this series so much as I never 100% know who actually did it. You have your suspicions the whole way through the book but they can change multiple times. That's in thanks to the way the author leads you up one path only for it to be a dead end. One minute she has you certain that who we are reading about is more than likely the killer but then a few pages later there are doubts emerging, given what you have just read about another character. The element of mystery abounds right until the final few chapters and I enjoy having one pulled over my eyes. The tension, suspicion and intrigue increases with the passing of each chapter and frustratingly they always end on a cliffhanger and it might be several chapters before we come back to that character to see what they may have uncovered. That for me is what adds to the real page turning element of the story. The focus of this story is the disappearance and subsequent discovery of the body of a four year old girl Nea Berg. She was found quite close to the home in the woods of her family - Eva and Peter Berg. But what upsets the community most is the more than passing resemblance to a case over thirty years ago. Has the same killer struck again? The person who in 1985 murdered a beautiful little girl called Stella quite close to the sit of the discovery of Nea's body? The story takes us back and forth through three time periods, July 1985 and the following months as the case is attempted to be solved. Modern day where Patrik and the police force try to work out what happened and is it connected to sinister goings on within their small community but also every few chapters we are taken back to Bohuslan in 1671 as follow Elin Jonsdotter whose husband was lost at sea. She and her daughter were sent to live with her sister and her husband. Normally I love any historical element but I found myself racing through the sections set in 1671, not fully absorbing the detail because it really didn't interest me and I couldn't see what bearing it had on the other two parts of the overall story. Yes it was filled with incredible detail but the content of Elin's story was just all a bit too wishy washy for me. I suppose in the end it did connect back to the modern day but it was all just too tenuous for me. Instead I focused all my attentions on what was going on in the present day and how it could all be linked together to find the ultimate answer and of course the reasons and motivations behind it. Once the initial discovery of the body and the connected investigation had been established for a period there was an overwhelming sense of waiting for something to happen. The police needed some clue to be discovered, some inspiration to strike for things to get motoring on. The book stalled slightly here but on reflection I suppose that's what happens in real life when a case is opened, you don't get answers instantly. Reports have to be carried out, questions asked, information has to be sieved through to work out what is false and what could be accurate. The author teases the reader with titbits of information and we are left to ponder how relevant they are to the overall picture or are they red herrings dropped in to put us very much off track. While things in my opinion were waiting to get into full flow an awful lot of characters were introduced. Some I would view as re-introductions from the previous books and others were all new. The reader has to size up each person and decide on their relevance and importance. Were they associated with the murder or was there other topical issues coming to the fore? That's another element that made me enjoy this book. Yes there was a murderer to uncover but the matter of the Syrian refugees arriving to seek sanctuary in the town also stirs emotions and even hatred within the minds of some residents which may have disastrous or positive outcomes. Is prejudice and racism alive and well in modern day Fjällbacka? The arrival of movie star Marie Wall to shoot her latest film sets everyone talking as she has not been seen since she confessed to a murder thirty years ago. Why wait so long to return and what connection may emerge between herself and local girl Helen? If any? Why did they confess to a murder they didn't commit so many years ago? Life has become very unsettled for all involved as old memories and secrets begin to stir once more and come to the fore. Marie's daughter Jessie and Helen's son Sam form a friendship that begins to grow deeper than just your normal companionship. They can talk to each other as they see more than a few passing similarities between them. The everyday pressures of being a teenager are compounded with the old wounds of their mothers being reopened but they too in the present are experiencing their own form of dislike. There were other characters mentioned who all in time have a bearing on the reveal but at the time of reading I dismissed some when I should have paid more attention to them. The tension and suspension increases with each chapter. Erica although not the sole focus of the book is busy beavering away, aiding Patrik in the most subtle of manners with the investigation. As the murder of Stella is the focus of her next book she holds more than a passing interest as to the motivation of little Nea's murder. Erica has such a brilliant mind as she can step back away from the investigation and observe and consider things from a different viewpoint. I thinks she works very well in tandem with Patrik. He knows she can be relied upon and at times even though their personal relationship blurs the lines of their professions they make things work and it never seems so out of the ordinary that Erica is allowed to get so involved. Patrik too is an expert at his job and I love how he can hold his tongue when it comes to the actions of a certain someone on the police force. They themselves are loveable but god they can be very frustrating when it comes to solving any crime be it small or large. This story is one long jigsaw with the various pieces of the puzzle slotting into place at a slow and steady pace and I loved every minute of it. The eventual outcome was a surprise and as things in the last few chapters happened very quickly, the reader does need to keep their wits about them so as not to miss out on any vital aspect of the storyline or to become too confused. I cannot recommend The Girl in the Woods enough, it is an excellent addition to the series. Long time fans will be deeply satisfied and there will be many new readers who once they have read this book will want to go back and read the entire series in one fell swoop.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Diana

    THE GIRL IN THE WOODS is written by Camilla Lackberg and translated from the Swedish by Tiina Nunnally. It is #10 in her Patrik Hedstrom (Fjallbacka) series. [ *personal note: During the height of the Coronavirus Lockdown in 2020, I decided to read this series. Camilla Lackberg is a favorite author of mine and the genres of Scandanavian Noir and mystery and detective stories can’t be beat. I did possess (and had read) several of the earlier titles but wanted to fill in the gaps which proved to b THE GIRL IN THE WOODS is written by Camilla Lackberg and translated from the Swedish by Tiina Nunnally. It is #10 in her Patrik Hedstrom (Fjallbacka) series. [ *personal note: During the height of the Coronavirus Lockdown in 2020, I decided to read this series. Camilla Lackberg is a favorite author of mine and the genres of Scandanavian Noir and mystery and detective stories can’t be beat. I did possess (and had read) several of the earlier titles but wanted to fill in the gaps which proved to be complicated with several of the titles. This last title, THE GIRL IN THE WOODS, was not in ebook format and a paperback had to be special ordered. The paperback had been published by HarperCollins UK. Patience and detecting paid off!* ] “When a four-year-old girl disappears in the woods outside Fjallbacka, people are horror-struck. Thirty years ago, a child went missing from the same spot and was later discovered, murdered.” book jacket “A Missing Child — A Murder — A Community Torn Apart — Heart-Stopping and Heart Warming — Both Chilling and Thrilling” book jacket I like this title and series very much. The main characters (Patrik Hedstrom & Erica Falck) are realistic, interesting, complex and likable, as are Patrik’s fellow police officers at Tanumshede Police Station. Both towns - Tanumshede and Fjallbacka - are real locations on the west coast of Sweden. Ms. Lackberg’s writing style involves many-layered plots with secrets (always many secrets) and often historical incidents from the past that have an effect on, or a relationship to, current events. In this title, chilling and horrifying events from 1671 in the Bohuslan area serve as a backdrop to current (both fictional and real) events in the same area. The trial, torture and death of a young woman said to be a ‘witch’ is difficult to read, but relates to current prejudices towards refugees. We are left with a bit of a cliffhanger on the last page concerning Erica’s sister, Anna, which I hope is resolved in Ms. Lackberg’s next installment in the series. THE GIRL IN THE WOODS is tense, chilling and horrifying in parts, but has its feel-good moments, too. I would heartily recommend this title and this series. *****

  18. 4 out of 5

    Biondatina

    Another excellent book from Mrs Läckberg. A complicated story between a famous Hollywood star, a group of Syrian refugees, an arson, a missing child, the old case of a child murder and... a witch trial 350years ago... I love this book as i loved every one of the Fjällbacka series. I think it's well written, with three timeframes and a lot of different but interesting characters. It's a bit darker that the previous books but the plot is strong and with twists as the key players change many times. Another excellent book from Mrs Läckberg. A complicated story between a famous Hollywood star, a group of Syrian refugees, an arson, a missing child, the old case of a child murder and... a witch trial 350years ago... I love this book as i loved every one of the Fjällbacka series. I think it's well written, with three timeframes and a lot of different but interesting characters. It's a bit darker that the previous books but the plot is strong and with twists as the key players change many times. The first half of the book is bit slow but very soon everything is speeding of to a unexpected end!

  19. 4 out of 5

    Cleopatra Pullen

    Camilla Läckberg has provided this reader with another meaty read in this the tenth in the Patrik Hedström and Erica Falck. This story is lengthy and involved. Readers won’t be able to stop themselves remembering some real-life crimes, especially those involving child-killers with the most obvious inspiration being drawn from Anne Perry and her friend Pauline Rieper, not a comfortable subject at all. The main story is that set in the present day of the disappearance of four-year old Nea Berg from Camilla Läckberg has provided this reader with another meaty read in this the tenth in the Patrik Hedström and Erica Falck. This story is lengthy and involved. Readers won’t be able to stop themselves remembering some real-life crimes, especially those involving child-killers with the most obvious inspiration being drawn from Anne Perry and her friend Pauline Rieper, not a comfortable subject at all. The main story is that set in the present day of the disappearance of four-year old Nea Berg from the same farm that another four-year old child went missing from thirty years before. Then Marie and her best friend Helen were accused of murder at the tender age of just thirteen. This is therefore in true Camilla Läckberg style a crime in the past with parallels in the present. What makes the disappearance of Nea Berg all the more chilling is that Marie Wall had returned to Fjällbacka in her role as Ingrid Bergman in a new film. Marie had used the crime she was accused of thirty years ago to help propel her into Hollywood stardom, and it had worked but she had not set foot back in the small Swedish town since she left all those years before. Helen meanwhile had married a local man aged eighteen and lived a quiet life now mother to a teenage son she is fearful that Marie’s return will encourage the story to come to life again. The chapters each cover many viewpoints each including scenes at the police station as our old favourites interview witnesses, pour over forensic reports and the ever dependable station chief Bertil Mellberg gives television interviews and interferes in Patrik Hedström’s handling of the case. As always it was great to catch up with everyone in Fjällbacka’s Police force and it does provide some much needed light relief in this dark and disturbing tale. Erica already had a book in the pipeline about Stella Strand and her two accused killers and so when parallels are drawn between the crimes she is on hand with her notes so far, and the interviews she continues to hold with key people from the time. Interspersed with the current investigations and happenings are chapters on The Stella Case giving the reader insights that haven’t necessarily been discovered, including those thoughts of the lead investigator. Intriguingly there is also a far older tale to be told that of Elin Jonsdotter in Bohuslän in 1671, what relevance this strand has remains a mystery for much of the book. If all that wasn’t enough the author includes another strand about Syrian refugees. I enjoyed this greatly although I was reminded why I normally save these novels as holiday reads; The Girl in the Woods is a whopping 592 pages long and packed full of information which doesn’t necessarily lend itself to short bursts of reading. For the first time in this series I did have moments where I wondered if the author had been slightly over-ambitious in the amount of different strands that run through the book, not that it was confusing, far from it, but the read felt far darker overall than the previous books in the series, and they were hardly laugh a minute reads. However, if you are a fan, as I am, there is much to feast on not only while you are reading this book but there are bigger themes and philosophical questions to ponder long after you finish the last page.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Inez

    Camilla is a great writer, I have enjoyed all her books. However l, I felt this one had a few too many elements to it. The 17th century stuff, I felt stopped the flow, and didn’t really add anything to the story. I coped with it by jumping to those sections & getting rid of them, so that I could enjoy the flow of the book. The usual characters in the book didn’t disappoint. I look forward to the next book.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Ilonita50

    Thanks a million to Harper Collins for an e-arc, this review is my honest thoughts. I am happy having read the recent #10 book in the series, it's been a while since I read ninth book and loved to return to new story set in Fjallbacka/ Patric Hedstrom detective series and his smart wife Erika, who really solves and gives best tips ever :) I gave the book 4.5 stars, so very close to have full rating, still there were few items I felt against the smooth plot. The cover is impressive! So much fits t Thanks a million to Harper Collins for an e-arc, this review is my honest thoughts. I am happy having read the recent #10 book in the series, it's been a while since I read ninth book and loved to return to new story set in Fjallbacka/ Patric Hedstrom detective series and his smart wife Erika, who really solves and gives best tips ever :) I gave the book 4.5 stars, so very close to have full rating, still there were few items I felt against the smooth plot. The cover is impressive! So much fits the story and the thriller mood, interesting read for half of a day for sure! The book unites many, and I say many characters and their standalone, as one may think at the start, but we know the writing too well, that these all will come to picture - for the main plot. I found the overall plot a little bit too often broken/interrupted jumping from one character set to another and to the past setting. The Girl in the Woods is a mixture of secrets, lies, detective, crime and drama, which hasn't been solved in the passed and drags along, involving new and new characters, who will make a deadly halt to everything. The story of the past involves a true historic background with fictional story, but ... it set's the attitude of that time thinking and "morals" and is quite disturbing at the end. It's about families, poverty, "no-family ties", vengeance... The present takes a real puzzle trying to solve the past links to the present crime. The four year old Linnea goes missing and her parents aren't sure when or how did she got lost, because none of them has checked on her properly...through out the plot I often had to question were the parents not a little too careless, to allow a 4-year-old to freely play on his own outside the house or alone in the woods? Everyone is so calm about it..that alone felt fishy...as I don't believe any of the childcare services would have seem this to be ok in real world. What's odd about the little girl is - she is SAME AGE and lives off at the SAME HOME only 30 years later ,a girl her age went missing and was found murdered alone in the water 30 years ago...ooooh, it does adds the thriller spooky setting! 30 years ago two teenage girls were accused to have been guilty and thus it shaped their lives forever, one had grown up in a bad family, where's another one - in sort of "perfect" family....the death of the little girl named Stella, set it all upside down...for better or worse..as none of the girls ever get over the trauma and were coping, dealing with outcomes every day... one become a famous actress, the other one a housewife...but they both had their children at the same age... There will be soo many questionings and conspiracy thoughts of - how, what, who... I will leave out any spoilers, because I want you to read it and have your own opinions about the book! It will be handy if you have read the previous books to figure the jokes and funny sets for the characters that story line develops from each book a little bit more.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Tatiana Valada

    I don't usually read books with +600 pages, i feel demotivated just by looking at them =P But because I enjoyed so much Camilla's writting I made another thing I don't do often, that is jumping from the 1st book to the last of a series. There's a loooot going on in this book: A little girl dies in the woods, reminding everyone of a similar crime that happened in the same spot 30 years before. People start wondering if the culprits are the same (the past must be digged) or if the refugies (that are I don't usually read books with +600 pages, i feel demotivated just by looking at them =P But because I enjoyed so much Camilla's writting I made another thing I don't do often, that is jumping from the 1st book to the last of a series. There's a loooot going on in this book: A little girl dies in the woods, reminding everyone of a similar crime that happened in the same spot 30 years before. People start wondering if the culprits are the same (the past must be digged) or if the refugies (that are now present all over Sweden) have something to do with it. All these assumptions led to a lot of investigation paths. Meanwhile there's a group of teenagers acting like they rule the world and others who feel like the misfits of society, both collide constantly. In between, a story that goes on back in 1670s, involve adultery, witchcraft, prejudice and vengeance. So there's 3 time lines throughout the whole book, making the actual crime solving to be pushed to the last 3rd of the book. Although I enjoyed the 1670s part, the link between this past story and the present crimes is not evident until the end. Camilla gives us a really short explanation that wasn't enough for me, maybe mixing this connection into the investigation would be nicer.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Eva

    Zwei 13jährige mit einer Lüge, die die eine befreit und die andere gefangen nimmt. Zwei Kinder, Opfer ihrer Hilflosigkeit und Wut. Der Fluch einer 1672 hingerichteten Hexe, der auch über 300 Jahre später noch wirksam zu sein scheint... Die Eishexe ist ein sehr komplexer Kriminalroman. Mord, Mobbing und Rassismus prägen die Handlung. Amüsant fand ich die Liebe der Schweden zum Kaffee. Ich habe vorher noch nie ein Buch gelesen, indem die Ermittler bei ihren Befragungen so viel Kaffee trinken durften... I Zwei 13jährige mit einer Lüge, die die eine befreit und die andere gefangen nimmt. Zwei Kinder, Opfer ihrer Hilflosigkeit und Wut. Der Fluch einer 1672 hingerichteten Hexe, der auch über 300 Jahre später noch wirksam zu sein scheint... Die Eishexe ist ein sehr komplexer Kriminalroman. Mord, Mobbing und Rassismus prägen die Handlung. Amüsant fand ich die Liebe der Schweden zum Kaffee. Ich habe vorher noch nie ein Buch gelesen, indem die Ermittler bei ihren Befragungen so viel Kaffee trinken durften... Ich erhielt ein Leseexemplar vom Verlag über NetGalley im Austausch für eine ehrliche Meinung. (Englischer Titel: The Girl In The Woods) Two 13-year-old girls with a lie, that frees the one and captures the other. Two children, victims of their helplessness and anger. The curse of an 1672 executed witch who, even more than 300 years later, seems to be still effective.... The Girl In The Woods is a very complex crime novel. Murder, bullying and racism characterise the plot. I found the Swedes' love of coffee amusing. I've never read a book before in which the investigators were allowed to drink so much coffee during their interviews.... I received an ARC from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Kristi Lamont

    Well, this marks one of the very few times I've ever cried at the end of a murder mystery, especially one that I had pretty much figured out (all the interweaving threads/different time periods) early on. But dang if Our Ms Lackberg didn't do a masterful job with some pretty timely, heavy and tragic stuff. Warning: There were some graphic parts that, to me, bordered on violence porn, but they were blessedly brief and did seem essential to the varying plot lines. As always, I loved the descriptio Well, this marks one of the very few times I've ever cried at the end of a murder mystery, especially one that I had pretty much figured out (all the interweaving threads/different time periods) early on. But dang if Our Ms Lackberg didn't do a masterful job with some pretty timely, heavy and tragic stuff. Warning: There were some graphic parts that, to me, bordered on violence porn, but they were blessedly brief and did seem essential to the varying plot lines. As always, I loved the descriptions of the food, the drink, the architecture, the sea....and of course getting to spend more time with a mostly-beloved cast of characters. Even if I do think our author needs to back off a little on the Bertil Mellberg professional oafishness; surely, by this point, he would've been pulled from position if he'd continued to make colossal mistake after colossal mistake. After colossal mistake. After colossal mistake. After......well, you get it. Awfully glad I scheduled this read so I could knock it out over the better part of two days, thus staying mostly immersed in it. Ready for my return to Fjällbacka soon!

  25. 5 out of 5

    Anke

    This was an awesome book! Ok, this author has a very distinctive style of writing and at least one of the previous books was rather boring with all this switching of storylines, but this one was a wonderful addition to the series. As always we have several storylines woven together - here it's today, 30years ago and a third one from 1671/2. Contrary to some other books here the pacing was great and the switch from one to the other worked out perfectly. Regarding the story: I liked the way we fol This was an awesome book! Ok, this author has a very distinctive style of writing and at least one of the previous books was rather boring with all this switching of storylines, but this one was a wonderful addition to the series. As always we have several storylines woven together - here it's today, 30years ago and a third one from 1671/2. Contrary to some other books here the pacing was great and the switch from one to the other worked out perfectly. Regarding the story: I liked the way we followed along all of the storylines and it was captivating to see how our MCs came nearer and nearer the solution. I also liked the inclusion of today's problems with all the refugees and the hatred of foreigners, as well as bullying among teenagers. Nevertheless it was a quite a bit formulaic. For me the final page was especially OTT. Because I couldn't stop reading, despite my minor niggles - 5 stars!

  26. 5 out of 5

    Lynn

    The Girl in the Woods begins with a missing 4 year old girl. She is missing from the same farm where another four year old was found murdered many years ago. Camilla Lackberg takes on many topics in this book: bullying, racism, a stigma around homosexuality. As well, there are three timelines occurring at different parts of the book. The 17th century one was extraneous and just added to a 581 page count. So did I like the book? Yes, with reservations. This is the 10th book in a series in which L The Girl in the Woods begins with a missing 4 year old girl. She is missing from the same farm where another four year old was found murdered many years ago. Camilla Lackberg takes on many topics in this book: bullying, racism, a stigma around homosexuality. As well, there are three timelines occurring at different parts of the book. The 17th century one was extraneous and just added to a 581 page count. So did I like the book? Yes, with reservations. This is the 10th book in a series in which Lackberg has fully developed the recurring characters. Reading one of her novels can be like catching up with the news from home. She highlights political and social trends in Sweden in her books. And, most importantly for me, Lackberg is an excellent storyteller despite a few too many coincidences that lead to the resolution of cases. The Girl in the Woods is a 3.5 rounded up to 4 because of my overall enjoyment of the series.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Elaine

    This is the tenth instalment in the Patrik Hedström series and in my opinion just as good as the first one. Ms. Läckberg really does know how to keep it interesting, her books are always a pleasure to read and this one was no exception. The twists between 17th century, current time and 30 years ago left me breathless and made it hard for me to put the book down. I gave the book a 4 star rating solely because for the first 100 pages or so, I was left confused as to who each character was as there This is the tenth instalment in the Patrik Hedström series and in my opinion just as good as the first one. Ms. Läckberg really does know how to keep it interesting, her books are always a pleasure to read and this one was no exception. The twists between 17th century, current time and 30 years ago left me breathless and made it hard for me to put the book down. I gave the book a 4 star rating solely because for the first 100 pages or so, I was left confused as to who each character was as there were so many. After I got the grasp for the characters it got better. And also I was slightly (but just slightly) disappointed in how things got resolved. I hoped for different outcome I guess. But all in all Camilla Läckberg is a master of writing engaging plotlines that slowly build and are guaranteed to keep you guessing until the end, I would highly recommend this book!

  28. 4 out of 5

    Marili

    This was my first acquaintance with Läckberg and I will definitely look into reading more of her books. I think it's one of the best crime stories I have ever read. Läckberg decided to touch some very serious and sensitive problems of today's society such as bullying and refugees. Aha has also managed to create a great mystery around the crimes, without the need for unnecessary bloodshed, which I appreciated. There are three stories in this book, the story of Elin, which takes place in the 17th This was my first acquaintance with Läckberg and I will definitely look into reading more of her books. I think it's one of the best crime stories I have ever read. Läckberg decided to touch some very serious and sensitive problems of today's society such as bullying and refugees. Aha has also managed to create a great mystery around the crimes, without the need for unnecessary bloodshed, which I appreciated. There are three stories in this book, the story of Elin, which takes place in the 17th century, the story of Nea, which takes place in the 80's and the story of Stella, which takes place in our time. The only reason why I did not give it 5 stars is because the reader has to reach the last page to find out how these stories are connected. But, overall, I enjoyed the book very much!

  29. 5 out of 5

    Cheyenne Tattersall

    It was an okay book (enough that I powered through the whole ~550 pages), but there was definitely too much going on. There were too many storylines to keep track of - (view spoiler)[ particularly the witch narrative, which only becomes relevant (ish?) at the end, and imo could have been left out. (hide spoiler)] As for the characters, while it is part of a series which could explain my confusion/lack of understanding, but there seemed to be too many officers with complex back stories that left It was an okay book (enough that I powered through the whole ~550 pages), but there was definitely too much going on. There were too many storylines to keep track of - (view spoiler)[ particularly the witch narrative, which only becomes relevant (ish?) at the end, and imo could have been left out. (hide spoiler)] As for the characters, while it is part of a series which could explain my confusion/lack of understanding, but there seemed to be too many officers with complex back stories that left me a little lost. I feel like it could have been told much more cohesively by cutting out several characters, or at least reducing how much detail went into their lives.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Linda

    Detective Patrick Hedstrom investigates the disappearance of a four year old girl from their farm. Thirty years earlier another young girl had disappeared from the same farm. A well crafted mystery set in present day Sweden with tensions between locals and newly arrived refugees complicates the solving of the crime.

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