Cover Image: The Boy from the Woods

The Boy from the Woods

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Member Reviews

In this latest stand-alone thriller from Harlan Coben, there are several threads which quickly draw the reader in & keep you guessing till the very end of the book.  One of the main characters is Wilde, found as a young boy living feral in the woods, his whole backstory remains a mystery thirty years later. Wilde a former soldier & sometime private investigator lives in an eco-capsule in the woods. He shares a connection with famous TV lawyer Hester Crimstein, the mother of his best friend who was killed in a tragic car accident. Hester is approached by her grandson Matthew to help trace a missing school friend, the unpopular, Naomi. Hester calls on Wilde for help & here the story really begins. Although it seems like it will be a fairly routine enquiry, it quickly escalates. There are so many strands to the story, politics, bribery, bullying with a little romance thrown in & a lot of dramatic action.  Thank you to netgalley for the opportunity to read & review this book. It’s exactly what you’d expect from a Harlan Coben book, good entertainment.
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Harlan Coben is one of the noly thriller writers who keeps me consistently guessing; so I was excited to be approved for a copy of his latest offering, The Boy from the Woods.

Whilst the story isn't directly about Wilde's time in the woods, it aludes to it frequently, with Wilde having an immense knowledge of the woods around the setting of the story.  When Matthew', Wilde's god-son, contacts him to ask him to find a missing schoolmate, Wilde is drawn into the high school drama, with bullying and cliques at the forefront.  Wilde soon finds Naomi, safe at home, her father having helped her complete The Challenge to gain some popularity at school, and hopefully less attention from the resident school popular boy, Crash.

So when Naomi goes missing a week after she 'returns' the police are less than willing to try and look for her, thinking more of her as the girl who cried wolf.  Wolfe's best friend's mother, Hester and Matthew's grandmother also comes onto the scene after being employed by Crash's parents when he also appears to have run away...

A very intriguing story, I was initially a bit confused about the whole policical side line story - but the book was woven so well and reached a satisfying conclusion, with all of the lose ends tied up.  I'd love to read more from the Wilde character again, maybe one day!
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The Boy From The Woods welcomes some new characters, whilst treating us with the presence of the brilliant fiesty Hester Crimstein, from the Myron Bolitar novels. Wilde is enigmatic, self sufficient and a little remote ... but then if you'd been found as a feral child roaming the woods and fending for yourself maybe you would be too. 
I really enjoyed the story, but somehow I expected a little more. Perhaps it's because it's the first of the series and the characters are just bedding in. However, I really do want to find out more about Wilde, the feral child all grown up, and will definately read the next in the series. 
The plot was fast to begin with, but then , for me at least had a little down time in the mddle, but took off again at the end.
As usual Coben's characterisation is great; the sullen teen, the irrascible old attorney, the dependable police detective, the sultry, grieving widow ... all came ro life on the page. 
Wilde and Hester Crimstein carry the novel and the dashes of humour really appeal to me. I love a little bit of humour in a novel and that's why I enjoyed the Myron Bolitar novels so much. I feel sure that Wilde will become one of my 'look forward to reading' about characters.
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Review 
Naomi Pine, high school student, goes missing and the rest of her classmates surely must know more. After all, they’ve made her life a misery for long enough and Matthew Crimstein has watched it happen. 

Now he calls on Wilde for his help. Wilde, named because he was found as a boy living wild in the woods behind Matthew’s father’s house, is Matthew’s godfather. He is also ex-services and overseas protection and defence in a security firm. 

Naomi is not the only child to go missing and ransom deadlines need to be met...

This is the first book I’ve read by Harlan Coben. It won’t be the last and he’s now on my list of newly discovered favourite authors. I did feel that the book slowed a bit in the middle with the politics, but not enough to stop me enjoying it overall. 

I rate this book 4 stars 🌟🌟🌟🌟

Thanks 
Thank you to the author and publishers Random House for an advanced copy of this ebook in exchange for an independent review.
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A solid thriller from Harlan Coben. I could not put this down until I finished! The main character has an unusual background and it was interesting how it was woven in to the narrative of the thriller so we could learn more about him.

I do hope the main character from this book will be featured in more books!
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This book was the right kind of addictive. I loved how the characters developed. It was a perfect book to read at the end of the day. Highly recommend!
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Didn’t quite grab me as much as Coben’s Bolitar stuff, but still a thoroughly enjoyable read. Wilde and Crimstein is an intriguing partnership of sorts and this works well in the novel.
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I did read this but I found it hard going even though I was pleased I did persevere. There was a lot going on in this story so maybe it was because of that. I'm not sure.
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A man of mystery that, for once, isn't given almost supernatural powers. It would have been very easy for Coben to create another Jack Reacher here, but he thankfully resists the temptation and instead gives us a man who simply gives his best, while recognising his limitations.
The storyline is intriguing and keeps you hanging on to the end, with unexpected twists that keep you guessing. Coben creates character with depth and to whom you can connect, like and dislike. It makes it an easy read perfect for winding down at the day's end.
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Thanks to NetGalley and Random House for the ARC of this book.

I was really excited by the opening to this book because it seemed to be a departure for Coben. It starts with the discovery of a boy living in the woods and no one knows who he is or what he is doing there. I thought the book would unravel this mystery. However, it fast forwards to when this character, Wilde, is grown up and has him investigate the disappearance of two teenagers in a very standard Cobenesque story.

In fact, the mystery of the boy from the woods is not actually resolved in this book, which is very unusual for Coben who usually ties up all his story threads in a neat bow at the end of each book. This made me wonder if this is the start of a new series following this character, or maybe I missed a clue I should have picked up on.

My favourite part of this book was that it has lawyer Hester Crimstein as one of the main characters. She often pops up in Coben’s other books, particularly his Myron Bolitar series, and it was nice to spend some time with this character and find out more about her. I also particularly enjoyed one scene where presidential candidate Rusty Eggers spins some bad news and coordinates his team’s Twitter ‘bot’ reaction, which I thought was a good insight into the current ‘fake news’ era when politicians seem to be able to get away with anything.

I’m a big fan of Coben and enjoyed this book, but I have read so many of his books now that I don’t find much original or surprising in his new books. Instead, they are like settling into a nice comfy pair of slippers and are comforting in their familiarity. Coben is a really reliable author, all of his books are well-crafted and readable and sometimes something expected, unchallenging and familiar is exactly what you want to read, especially at a time when there is so much uncertainty in the world. I look forward to Coben’s new book every year.
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If you haven’t had chance to pick up a book by Harlan Coben then you really need to add his books to your TBR pile! I have found them to be filled with twists, interesting characters and the ability to pull you in from the very first chapter. The Boy from the Woods is another example of Harlan Coben’s brilliant storytelling!

Now there is a little bit of everything in this book from a varied set of characters to a story immersed in mystery and lies at every turn. Then add in some sub plots that will also make you curious to see how and if they all fit together. Let’s just say that there are plenty of secrets at the heart of this story and I couldn’t wait to see how it would all play out.

I have to talk about Hester. Her character is pretty special and I loved her parts as she kind of stole the show! Now Wilde is an intriguing character and his back story is very interesting. This in a way draws him to Naomi and her disappearance. He prefers his own company and you can see his struggle to make connections with other people. This made him a little difficult to connect with as a character but it also made sense because of his personality. He doesn’t let people get too close so I guess the reader doesn’t get too close either. The characters in the book really made things extra special for me and I would love to catch up with them again!

The Boy from the Woods may seem like one story on the surface but dig a little deeper and there is so much more to discover. There is drama, lies and plenty of secrets all wrapped up in the pages of this book. I enjoyed every twist and reveal that was waiting to catch me out. The Boy from the Woods is the ideal book to escape into!
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TWITTERESQUE REVIEW:

If you’ve previously read books by Coben, then you’ll know feisty Hester Crimstein, a 70 plus defence attorney who’s a force to be reckoned with.  She MAKES this book.  Lots of suspense, whip smart dialogue and interesting characters.  But not my favourite by this author.
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Really enjoyed this thriller which combines a couple of main plots strands - the disappearance of a teen girl and the back story of the person most involved with investigating the disappearance. The investigator, Wilde, was found in the woods as a young boy and how he came to be there has never been resolved. This plot strand weaves alongside the disappearance of a teen girl and the bullying she has endured at school. A real page turner and a good distraction / lockdown read.
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Decades ago, a boy is found living in the woods, with no memory of his past. Even after an exhaustive search, the child's family is never found and he is turned over to a foster family. Years later, the same man, whose past is shrouded in mystery, must find a missing teenage girl before her disappearance brings about disastrous consequences for her community.

On the face of it, this is a nice, fast-paced thriller with an exciting plot and some intriguing characters. However, there are too many things going on in the story. Though the title suggests, it’s centered on “The Boy from the Woods”, he is just a small part of the plot. The boy from the woods does play a role in this book but he is not the primary focus of the story-line.

First the good parts. The story is well structured, has some great characters and has lots of twists and turns. Wilde was an enjoyable character with an aura of mystery and some crisp dialogues. His past is largely unknown and there are questions about his past that never get fully answered. However, Wilde is a character that has plenty of charisma and I think he will return in the future with more answers.

There are a lot of subplots in this book; bullying, kidnappings, ransom notes, blackmailing and conspiracy theories, fake news, politics (for a while it felt like a thriller version of 13 reasons). Then again, there were so many things going on and there is no singular focus on one case. The main mystery and Wilde’s background story were intriguing but it never plays a key role in the story. Except Wilde, none of the supporting characters felt completely convincing. Having enjoyed Coben’s Tell No One, the story felt disjointed and lacking in thrills. There were some unexpected surprises, but some of the parts felt unconvincing.

Overall, The Boy From the Woods is a solid and fast-paced thriller with some intriguing characters. It’s an entertaining read which will keep you engaged.

Many thanks to the publishers Random House UK and Netgalley for the ARC.
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This was another brilliant and thrilling read from one of the masters of suspense.  I love Harlan's books, and can't wait for the next one! Recommended.
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With thanks to Random House and NetGalley for the ARC.

Harlan Coben writes a great story with great characters & settings.

Set in a small town in upstate New York, this story centres around Wilde, a character with an extremely unusual background.
He was found living in the woods as a child, no one, no even Wilde has ever claimed any knowledge of how he got there.

He becomes involved in helping to track down missing teenagers. One is the friend of Wildes best friends son, the other the son of the local Mr Big.

An excellent story with great main and support cast members. Well paced and kept me interested all the way through.
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I love the Myron bolitar series and have ready many of Harlen Cobens books before so was excited to read this and it didn’t disappoint. The story centres around a guy who was found in the woods many years ago who now is helping to find a girl who has gone missing. There is a political underpinning running throughout with deception, murder and lies. A fantastic read that I struggled to put down. I loved the main character and hope to see more books based on him.
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Another gem of a book from Harlan Coben who doesn't disappoint- great setting, characters and storyline  - i love it when you get a book you just can't put down and this was one of them. I don't think the plot was particularly clever, as we expect these days,  but the excellent writing and character development made up for it. I look forward to this one being on the TV. Perfect holiday / lockdown read
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I am a massive Harlan Coben fan so couldn't wait to read his most recent novel.  I loved the characters (recognising Hester whom I adore) and the premise.  I did find this one a little more stilted than the usual fast paced, I can't wait to keep reading way I usually feel reading Harlan but I still really enjoyed it.  Quite a political slant to this one but with plenty of drama and mystery, I definitely need to know more about Wilde so I hope there will be more to come involving him!
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This book has all the ingredients found in a Harlan Coben novel,  interesting characters, twisting plot, surprises throughout. It just didn't hit the mark.for me, I found the slow pace of the first half and the numerous plot lines distracted from my enjoyment of this
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