In The Woods By Tana French
As usual lately the book club met today. A small group of us anyway. A smaller group than usual lately, we meet to discuss books. Life happens though and as committed as we all are, it isn’t possible all the time for everyone to make it. This was a meeting that suffered from more of that than usual. Still, we had snacks, Irish Quiche, potato chips, some gluten free eats, really beautiful water, and Irish soda bread.
I considered setting the table back in our woods…. But the bugs set me straight when I went to view that option. Instead, I brought some things from the woods to the patio. I allowed it to become over grown with weeds so it seemed a bit like something that nature was in the process of reclaiming with the thick wisteria growing over the purgala above us offering shade. Much as I envision ancient ruins might look in the forest….. Beside us, resting in the grass of the back yard/field, was a single child’s bike I borrowed from the neighbors. It was aimed in the direction of the woods. I made a centerpiece of an old burl and some of the treasures I had salvaged from the forest to further bring the book to life.
In The Woods, by Tana French, is the story of a murder detective a little outside of Dublin. Rob/Adam, and his partner Cassie, catch a murder that took place in the development where Rob grew up as Adam (he took the name Rob after everything while in boarding school. ) As a child, he was part of a terrible event in which 3 children rode into the woods on their bike and 1 came out, with socks covered in blood, not cuts on him, with no memory of what happened and no knowledge of what had happened to the other 2 children. He narrates the book and tells you he lies at the start… So how much of this account can you even trust? The new murder is of a little girl from the development. It triggers some things for Rob…. An investigation of a modern murder takes place in the strata layers of an archaeology dig in the woods that is layered over an older mystery…
We talked about many things, Rosalind, her behaviors being often highly maternal while her ill mother seemed completely shut down. We discussed Jonathan, and how he handled his eldest daughters and how the whole sordid thing could unfold. We talked about a certain someone’s patsy…. And discussed the many many possibilities for what happened to the other two children, Peter and Jamie. We asked the hard questions and hit a brick wall much as the early investigators. We talked about weather we thought Rob (then Adam,) had done something to them. We discussed Rob, considered weather he missed the sociopath because he was ready body language rather than empathizing with other people. Anyone can mimick body language, but some people can’t feel what is behind the body language they mimick….. We talked about the family of the modern victim and what might have been available to deal with those kinds of situations back then. Very Very little….. Many things were spoken of related to this book and still for me, the end is empty and I still have no closure. But I had a great time discussing this book with others who share this reading experience with me.
Some of us liked the book, some of us weren’t that into it. Some of us may have liked it but could not make it to this meeting.
It was wonderful to be social after all this covid time. I had a lovely time meeting with the book club all of us vaccinated, once again. Our next meeting will be on August 13th to watch The Mirror Crack’d the movie based on last month’s book. We need a break from mysteries. Rather than following In The Woods up with The Silent Patient, we are changing the order so that we will read The House Of Sand And Fog as our August book. To be followed by Circe, after which we will read The Silent Patient and finish out the year with Cold Comfort Farm. We will choose more books, a year’s worth that will start in January 2022, once we have completed this year’s list. at some point before Christmas at our yearly book club beach trip. On this trip we will walk the strand, perhaps make a trip to Billings gate Island, eat a lot, picnic at the beach, watch movies and get our silly on… It should be fun.
Thanx guys for another great discussion.
Amanda of Wildflower Farm