“What she saw in the wood would change her life forever.
Walking in the wood one day, Fran witnesses the horrifying murder of local teen, Tyler. She tells the police exactly what she saw, but their investigation doesn’t seem to make much headway.
Fran tries to settle back into a normal life, but is tormented by guilt – was there something she could have done to save the boy? Fran can’t let it go and finds herself drawn to Tyler’s grieving mother, Mel, both finding some strange connection through this shared trauma.
Then someone launches a terrifying campaign of intimidation against Fran and her husband, Laurie. Could it be the killers? Are they letting her know she had better be careful what she says? Who she sees? And why is Mel acting so strangely? Does she know more about her son’s death than she is saying?
Fran can’t help herself – she needs to know the truth. But when she begins to dig, she uncovers the terrible secret of the deep, dark wood – a secret that will change her life forever.
In a Deep Dark Wood – a stunning psychological thriller with a nerve-shredding climax. Perfect for fans of K. L. Slater, Sarah A. Denzil and Miranda Rijks.”
Hello and a very warm welcome to damppebbles. Today I am delighted to share my review of In a Deep Dark Wood by Tina Pritchard. In a Deep Dark Wood will be published by Inkubator Books on Sunday 28th February 2021. I chose to read and review a free eARC of In a Deep Dark Wood which has in no way influenced my review.
In a Deep Dark Wood is such an assured, confident debut that it’s clear the author has been honing their craft for some time. It was a pleasure to read and I enjoyed every moment of this entertaining novel.
Mother of two, Fran Hughes, is minding her own business when she witnesses a horrific attack on a local teenager in the woods near her house. As the attack intensifies she realises that the victim – Tyler Ingram – is about to be murdered in front of her very eyes. Unable to stop the inevitable from happening Fran returns home traumatised and shocked, determined to help the police discover who killed the teenager. But the investigation falters. She’s on the periphery and wants to help bring justice to the boy’s family. So Fran decides to do her own digging into Tyler’s life. But what she discovers could have terrifying consequences for Fran and her own family…
In a Deep Dark Wood instantly hooks the reader in with a brilliantly tense scene in a prison which I adored. I needed to know more. I had to find out who this woman was and why she was doing what was being described. From there we’re introduced to Fran and her gorgeous little pup, Buddy, as they take their daily stroll through the deep dark wood and make their horrifying discovery. I quickly warmed to Fran. She’s beautifully normal and reacts in a very measured and mature way to all of the situations she’s put in (*most* situations anyway – sensible decisions don’t always make for gripping thrillers, after all! 😉). I was with Fran every step of the way as she attempted to discover the truth.
The plot is well paced with some very exciting moments and unexpected twists. The storyline really surprised me by heading down a route I wasn’t expecting but I really enjoyed it. One character in particular – for their devious and despicable ways – stood out from the rest for me. An utterly horrible creation who, because I’m peculiar like that, made the book for me. More evilness please!
Would I recommend this book? I would, yes. In a Deep Dark Wood is an entertaining read and I loved spending time with Fran. I found the book very easy to read speeding through it in under two days. One aspect of the ending felt a little forced to me but it didn’t detract from my enjoyment of this well-written novel. Recommended.
I chose to read and review a free eARC of In a Deep Dark Wood. The above review is own unbiased opinion.
In a Deep Dark Wood by Tina Pritchard was published in the UK by Inkubator Books on 28th February 2021 and is available in digital format (please note, the following links are affiliate links which means I receive a small percentage of the purchase price at no extra cost to you): | amazon.co.uk | amazon.com | Goodreads | the damppebbles bookshop.org shop |
After a life dedicated to bringing up a family, taking a social science degree, working as a lecturer, a trainer and more recently an independent celebrant, Tina addressed her burning need to write a novel. In a Deep Dark Wood reflects her belief that scratching below the surface of ordinary lives can reveal a rich seam of material. She wrote the book after her interest was piqued by police investigations in the UK Midlands into County Lines Drugs operations. After researching she discovered just how prevalent the problem is in rural communities.
Like many women of her age, the main character Fran has lost a sense of who she is beyond being a wife and mother. She is an unlikely protagonist. In need of a purpose after a terrible year that has left her reeling, she finds it, albeit in a way that ultimately endangers her life.
Tina loves to write and has won competitions for some of her short stories and poetry. She lives in a beautiful part of the world and gains much of her inspiration from walking her badly behaved terrier Horace, in the Derbyshire countryside.