In a Dark, Dark Wood by Ruth Ware

A skillful mix of an unreliable narrator, heart pounding suspense and a cast of dodgy characters.

inadarkdarkwoodIn a Dark, Dark Wood by Ruth Ware

Genres: Mystery, Thriller, Suspense
Published: 30th July, 2015
Series: N/A
Rating: 4

Nora hasn’t seen Clare for ten years. Not since the day 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.

Nora has a dark secret, and an invitation to Clare’s hen do. Neither of those thrill her too much, because who likes to hide something shady, or attend to a party of a woman with whom she hasn’t been in touch for a decade for some ominous reasons?

But after making a sort of pact with another old school friend, Nina, off she goes, into the woods, where the dubious hen weekend takes place. The organizer, Flo is a proper fruitloop, Nina is an outright bitch whose favourite pastime seems to be antagonizing everyone, Clare is all sorts of weird, Melanie constantly complains about something, and there’s also a dude among the guests.17422f24aefe22d0c6290981d8a11a66.gif

The story is told entirely from Nora’s perspective, so we only know what she knows, and let me tell you it’s not much. Turns out, she can’t remember shit, because of the horrible thing that happened, and the concussion she’s suffering from doesn’t help either. So, here we are trying to make sense of the whole conundrum while she’s in the throws of despair over not having any recollection of the events.

I didn’t find Nora’s dirty secret as earth shattering as she made it out to be, and figured it pretty early on. I’m not sure whether I was supposed to do that, or perhaps just watched too many true crime documentary lately, or teenage girls are just bloody predictable, but in all fairness, my discovery didn’t take away anything from the enjoyment of the story.

This was a pretty exhilarating thriller, one of those I would definitely call a proper page turner, more focused on creating suspense and making you feel lost and uncomfortable than getting to know the characters, but nevertheless entertaining.

In a Dark, Dark Wood has all the ingredients that make a gripping and suspenseful mystery that is just waiting to be devoured.

But! I also need to mention this: if you like to take your thrillers seriously, you might end up feeling shortchanged with this one, because there are some events that might feel a bit silly, or too convenient4

Would you be comfortable to attend a party in the middle of the woods, with no cellphone reception whatsoever?



  1. I read this book, my first Ruth Ware.. I found it entertaining where I didn’t want to think.
    I was not fond of other books of hers.
    But I won’t go for a reunion in such a place. I would be too scared.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. He he, I am always dubious whenever there’s a party in the woods… It seems like a great page turner though and I do like the sound of it. Great review Norrie! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh, how exciting! Hope you like them, whichever you choose!
      I read also Woman in Cabin 10 and it was also pretty cool. Bit of Agatha Christie vibes.


  3. Well, despite the couple of “silly” moments, this one obviously hit all the right notes for you, and turned out to be a real page-turner! We all want to read that kind of book. Something that grabs us and doesn’t let go. So, I’m adding it to my list. I haven’t read any Ruth Ware before, but will do now. I’m guessing she’s like Angela Marsons?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha, yea, i do like my silly books sometimes! 😀
      I only read one Angela Marsons, maybe 3 years ago… in terms of pace and and page turner factor, yes it was similar if i remember right.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I heard the two authors compared, which is why I asked. I read Marson’s first and thoroughly enjoyed it, and don’t mind silly within the context of the story. It’s all good if the author handles it properly. And right now, I’m wanting something that has some bite to it. My current read is a plodding bore. *sigh*

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Wonderful review! I read this a while ago and enjoyed it! And I love the word dodgy, I read so many books that take place in the UK sometimes I adopt your language especially lovely and proper fabulous words!💕💕

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh, how cool! Hope you like it 🙂
      This was the second book of hers i read and it’s one of those i enjoy reading and i know it won’t overwhelm me with a lot of stuff to think about 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I haven’t read this yet, but after reading The Death of Mrs Westaway I want to read everything by Ware. I have attended parties deep in the woods without a cell phone…so yup, I certainly would 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! Have a lovely day too 🙂

      This book is good for a real quick read, where you don’t want to be bothered by having too much think about stuff related to the story 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Ruth Ware is such a hit or miss with me! I’ve loved a few and barely finished a few that seemed to drag on…. I own this one and def. want to read it soon to see how I feel. She has that new one coming out! Whoop!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. This is only the second one i read, but will try the other ones as well. Certainly not the types of books that will make me think deep thoughts, but it was fun 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Great review. I love a story where the main character doesn’t know anything because of memory loss or some other weird thing and then their life sort of unravels, past and present. I think I have this somewhere…

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Even if it was super predictable it definitely sounds like you had fun with this book. I think sometimes there is something comforting about falling into one of these tropey stories where you sort of know how it’s all going to unfold but watching the madness happen is entertaining anyway. The suspense alone is enough to keep you turning the pages!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yea, i don’t think it would be your sort of book. Unless you really need some quick entertainment that will not inspire deep thoughts 😀


  9. Glad that your discovery didn’t entirely spoil it for you (and yes it seems like teenage girls- at least in books- are entirely predictable 😉 ) Fair enough about it being a bit silly/convenient- but good to know it’s an enjoyable thriller otherwise. Great review!

    Liked by 1 person

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