She Reads: Into A Dark, Dark Wood by Ruth Ware

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“I am running. I am running through moonlit woods, with branches ripping at my clothes and my feet catching in the snow-bowed bracken.” With this line, “Into A Dark, Dark Wood” by Ruth Ware grabs readers’ attention immediately and refuses to let go until the story has reached its conclusion. With many plot lines very carefully woven in and out of each other, readers will find themselves asking new questions after every chapter. Worry not, dear reader, for Ruth Ware’s writing style lends itself to a neat, yet haunting resolution which will leave readers with chills and, maybe even a few answers. This is one that you will be thinking on long past its end. 

This may not be a great choice to pick up on a dark, stormy evening, I will tell you that much. Though not entirely sure what to expect when I picked up this story, I can confidently tell you that it might be one of the most harrowing I have read yet. You have been warned! With Ware telling the tale from two different points of view, it moves between the first-person narration of Leonora Shaw as she recounts details of a horrible accident from the Intensive Care Unit’s bed that she has just woken up in, and the events as they happened in the days leading up to it. All she knows is that someone is dead and the doctors and police standing guard of her door will not tell her anything. 

 When Leonora (Nora) receives an email invite to a bachelorette party from her childhood best friend, Clare, who she has not spoken to in upwards of 10 years, she is confused. Nora is uncertain whether she should accept the invitation and go, but is eventually encouraged by another of her friends, Nina, who has been invited to attend.  

Once at the house where the bachelorette party is being held, strange things begin happening one after another and the housemates are slowly becoming unsettled as tensions rise. Nora remembers those nights in crystal clear detail and with the help of a young officer, delves into her memories that have been locked away by a brain injury Nora is told she sustained in the crash. As the truth begins to come out, Nora begins to see things as they were that fateful evening and ultimately discovers that absolutely nothing has ever been as it seems. 

Ruth Ware’s ability to tell her stories in such painstaking detail left me knowing that I would most definitely revisit this book in the future. I highly recommend it and look forward to possibly writing and recommending more of her novels to you. 

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