“Nora hasn’t seen Clare for ten years. Not since Nora walked out of her old life and never looked back.
Until, out of the blue, an invitation to Clare’s hen party arrives. A weekend in a remote cottage – the perfect opportunity for Nora to reconnect with her best friend, to put the past behind her.
But something goes wrong. Very wrong.
And as secrets and lies unravel, out in the dark, dark wood the past will finally catch up with Nora.“
“In A Dark Dark Wood” is the debut novel from English author Ruth Ware. The story is told from the perspective of Nora Shaw, herself a crime novelist living in London. Invited to the hen weekend (though not the wedding) of Clare Cavendish, her former best friend at school, with whom she’s had no contact for a decade, Nora – short for Leonora and known in her school days as Lee – is reluctant to go until another of her school friends Nina, who is also invited, agrees to go too.
The weekend is based in the secluded forest home of Clare’s now-best-friend Flo’s aunt. Surrounded by snow, and with no mobile phone signal, the large glass fronted structure is to be home to the small group but tensions begin to creep in immediately…
The story switches from the hen weekend to us finding that Nora is in hospital under police guard, with no memory as to what has happened. The details are then teased out as she begins to gradually piece together events one by one from her hospital bed.
I thought that this was a really well written and plotted book. Once Nora learns that someone has died the identity of the person takes some time to come out and just about every character has some degree of motive, including the young woman suffering from memory loss. Beautifully set up, and with so many clues pointing to other suspects, I didn’t see the identity of the killer coming.
There is a similar theme to that in “The Girl On The Train” I suppose, but nonetheless, I found this book to be a great read and well recommended to lovers of crime fiction…