The Wilds

The thrilling new mystery from the bestselling author of The Sanatorium

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Pub Date 16 Jul 2024 | Archive Date 16 Jul 2024

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The Sanatorium took you to the Alps and chilled you to the bone. Now, The Wilds will take you deep into the woods . . . and out there, it's easy to get lost.
After the dark events that scarred her childhood, Kier Templer escaped her hometown and twin to live her life on the road. They've never lost contact until, on a trip to a Portuguese national park, Kier vanishes without a trace.

Detective Elin Warner arrives in the same park ready to immerse herself in its vast wilderness - only to hear about Kier's disappearance, and discover a disturbing map she left behind. The few strangers at the isolated camp close ranks against her questions, and the park's wild beauty starts to turn sinister.

Elin must untangle the clues to find out what really happened to Kier. But when you follow a trail, you have to be careful to watch your back...

'An atmospheric chiller with shocking twists' SHARI LAPENA
'Grips from page one with its serpentine plot and mood of real menace' LOUISE CANDLISH
'Everything we crave in thriller writing. This is a one-sitting read' JEFFERY DEAVER
'A complex story with skilful twists, leading us to a breathless conclusion' LUCY CLARKE
'Intelligent, twisty, stylish and incredibly suspenseful' WILL DEAN
'An addictive, atmospheric mystery in a spectacular setting' T.M. LOGAN
'A stunning, sweeping suspense which leaves you reeling' JANE CORRY
'Will leave your jaw on the floor' MATTHEW BLAKE
'I was gripped and moved. A cracker of a thriller' EVE CHASE
'Whiplash-inducing twists. Utterly gripping' JOHN MARRS
'An engrossing, surprising wilderness thriller' MARK EDWARDS


THE SANATORIUM was a No.1 Sunday Times paperback bestseller 08.01.22.

The Sanatorium took you to the Alps and chilled you to the bone. Now, The Wilds will take you deep into the woods . . . and out there, it's easy to get lost.
After the dark events that scarred her...

A Note From the Publisher

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Advance Praise


'An atmospheric chiller with shocking twists' SHARI LAPENA


'Spine-tingling, with twists you'll never see coming. A must-read' RICHARD OSMAN

'I absolutely loved The Sanatorium - it gave me all the wintry thrills and chills' LUCY FOLEY

'An eerie, atmospheric novel that had me completely on the edge of my seat' REESE WITHERSPOON

'Creepy, deeply claustrophobic, twists and turns galore, this book is a towering example of a masterful hand at work' DAVID BALDACCI

'So atmospheric and hold-your-breath tense with cleverly executed twists and a finale that gave me the chills' CLAIRE DOUGLAS

'A chillingly vivid thriller in a fantastic setting' T.M. LOGAN

'Menacing, creepy . . . echoes of Hitchcock and du Maurier' DAILY MAIL

'Full of foreboding and high-stakes tension . . . Shocking and chilling' NITA PROSE

'Guaranteed to give you goosebumps' WOMAN & HOME

'Ramps up the creepiness at every turn' OBSERVER


'An atmospheric chiller with shocking twists' SHARI LAPENA


'Spine-tingling, with twists you'll never see coming. A must-read' RICHARD OSMAN

'I absolutely...

Available Editions

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ISBN 9781408729946
PRICE £16.99 (GBP)

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Average rating from 223 members

Featured Reviews


This is the third installment of the Detective Elin Warner series and it does not disappoint.

It is incredibly fast paced and gripping throughout. Each chapter ends in such a way that you can't help but keep reading long I to the night. It is told in dual timelines between Kier and Elin and although set in Portugals National Park, it feels incredibly claustrophobic.
Although the topic covered in this book is not pleasant it was an enjoyable read, with a twist I did not see coming.

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‘You can’t outrun a monster.
I should have known that from the start.’
The Elin Warner trilogy is one of my absolute favourites. This week alone, I’ve recommended starting from the first in anticipation of the third to about 5 different people. They grip you, they make you think and they deliver both a mystery whilst also giving you something that will stay with you afterwards
In what seems like it could possibly be the end of the series, we find Elin on the hunt to find out what happened to missing woman Kier Temple, and as we uncover this mystery we also solve mysteries that have been plaguing Elin for the past 2 novels. This novel also explores topics of abuse which truly shine a light on the different ways abuse can show up in relationships, and is also written about with great care and tact that I think should be applauded
Sarah Pearse closes this story in such a wonderful way that feels true to all characters involved and feels SO satisfying as an excited reader. This was one of my most anticipated reads of 2024 and it truly didn’t disappoint! If this is the last in the Elin Warner series, I shall certainly be sad to not see her again. But my word am I excited for what Sarah Pearse has up her sleeve next!
Thank you to LittleBrownBookGroup for the early copy, I couldn’t have been more thrilled to receive that email!

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thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for my copy of this book.

Elin and her brother Isaac are reconnecting and taking a trip together. Elin is having a break from her job as a detective after the last case took its toll on her. Isaac’s friend Penn suggest they look into the disappearance of his sister. What can of worms have they opened though.

This is told from the pov of Keir, the missing sister, and the events leading up to her disappearance. And also of Elin. This had me hooked. There were so many twists and turns. Every time I thought I knew where I stood with the characters, the author flipped everything over and over. Absolutely loved it. It was an exciting read. Very atmospheric. Loved the idea of Keir’s maps and could picture things in my head, due to the vivid descriptions. Recommend 100%.

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The Wilds is the third and final book in the series featuring Detective Elin Warner. Despite this, the book can be read as standalone, and it wasn’t necessary to the story to have read the previous two books. What stands out about this one is the isolating setting and learning about the lives of those individuals who choose to live off the grid. The story deals with some heavy themes, TW; domestic violence/abuse. The story is told from multiple POV and timelines which is perfect for this style of thriller. Overall, this is an enjoyable book and trilogy and I will certainly be reading more by this author.

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The third and final instalment in Sarah Pearses atmospheric novels and a fitting conclusion. I'm not adding in a synopsis as they are plentiful..

I love a novel set home and away ( living in Devon being the home bit ). As well as Devon the majority of this book plays out in Portugal but definitely not the holiday areas that first spring to mind when you think of it.

As with her other novels the setting soon becomes real, her descriptive writing style definitely appeals to me. What I felt was very clever was how claustrophobic being out in the open felt, how not all prisons have walls was soon apparent.

The overarching storyline is one of family, dysfunctional relationships ( both with oneself and others) and emotional and physical abuse. Having witnessed coercive control as a child and having dealt with victims of abuse professionally this did make the hairs on the back of my neck stand up such was the accuracy portrayed.

Whilst there is enough background information to make this readable as a standalone novel I do feel you will get a lot more from it and some of the characters if you read the two others first.

Thank you to @netgalley @littlebrownbookgroup_uk and @sarahpearseauthor for this advance copy.

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Kier Templer has had a difficult childhood which has left her deeply scarred. She has never stayed in one place but has always kept in touch with her twin brother, Penn.
Now she has disappeared in a national park in Portugal.
Detective Elin Warner and her brother arrive in the park for a holiday but Elin finds herself drawn into Kier's story and there seems to be more than meets the eye in the camp nearby.
But who is telling the truth and is the truth always what it seems.
And don't forget to look over your shoulder.
Loved this book , twists and turns and kept me guessing to the last page.

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This was a great ride with many twists and lots of added creepiness as well.This is the third in the series of DI Elin investigating and I feel that this is the best one yet .The book. Is certainly convoluted at the start with the setting of the scenery and the characters but it did not take long to get to grips with the scenery and the characters and fall. In love with both. The location setting in Portugal was so easy to fall in love.with as the descriptions were amazing.The sections give it the points of view from the two periods and the two main characters gave so much to the depth of the story. The in depth covering of the difficult topics melding together so well, of abusive relationships, suicide, murder, loneliness and deception. I loved the idea of Keir’s maps and how they told such emotive stories, these were such an unusual and superb touch to the story and added so much intrigue as to what was really being mapped.
The final part of the story was amazing and although bits were imagined but not the full story.


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Having experience of controlling men, I found this book read true with the way they gradually make you feel doubtful of yourself. It was another now and then book, but it was crucial to the plot as it told what happened before Kier disappeared and why she had left the country. Plus the search for her. I couldn't decide if I hated Penn for what he did, or sympathise because he was desperate to find his sister. I did hate another character though and thought they were a murderer so I didn't guess the ending. Another one sitting read!

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This is the third in the DI Elin Warner series. I’ve read The Sanatorium but not The Retreat but that didn’t affect my enjoyment. Elin and her brother, Isaac, travel to a remote national park in Portugal to repair their relationship. They end up investigating the disappearance of Kier, a woman from their home town who was last seen in the park. This was a great read, a pacey thriller with some shocking twists. For me, the setting of the wild but beautiful setting made it even more enjoyable than The Sanatorium. Thanks to NetGalley and Little Brown Book Group for the review copy.

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This was the complete opposite to the book I read prior to it but it was very much a welcome change.

I absolutely loved Sarah's previous books in this series - The Sanatorium and The Retreat - and I know I will jump on the chance to read any book she writes.

I have just found out that this is the final book in the Elin Warner series and I am very sad about that. I'm sure anything Sarah writes, I will absolutely loved, but I have really enjoyed this trilogy and seeing the directions she's taken it.

It opens with a description of an unnamed individual in a campervan of sorts in the dead of the night. I've always liked the idea of a campervan but I've thought it'd be too claustrophobic, and Sarah has depicted that fear absolutely perfectly. I was only two pages in and my heart was already in my throat. It's not over the top, but really tells you the direction this book is going in.

It's split between two characters, two time periods, and two locations: we have Kier in Devon in 2018, and Elin in Portugual in 2021. Kier's scenes are in first person, and Elin's in third person. In Kier's sections we also meet Zeph, her partner, and in Elin's we have her brother Isaac.

I particularly liked Elin's scenes with her brother as it allows us to see her relationship with him and how different that makes her than when she's in a professional capacity. By having the two separate scenes, it's like we have two stories and two sets of protagonists, and Sarah has expertly managed to weave them together.

What I enjoy about this series is that Elin isn' do I put this? She's not an active policewoman on policewoman duties. She always seems to be in a place where a crime happens to occur, and I like that. It means we get to see her as a character for herself, as Elin Warner, before we see her as a police officer, which gives us an extra depth to her.

There are some difficult topics raised, such as coercive control, emotional abuse, toxicity, death, crime, injury, grief, bereavement, loneliness, relationship difficulties, paranoia etc.

This felt very different to the first two. Whereas those were very enclosed, set in one place - unsurprisingly, the sanatorium and the retreat respectively - this felt wider. Yes it is all in one setting I suppose, but they can go anywhere. Mountains and hills and rivers and camps and villages etc. It's more open and I cannot decide it that makes it more or less frightening. It's less claustrophobic, but it invites in more danger.

There are twists and turns all over the shop which is exactly what I've come to expect from her work. You think the only thing linking them is the location but there's more to it than that, and there was definitely one twist I didn't see coming, about halfway through. It was a proper hand to mouth gasp kind of thing.

It is as engrossing and chilling as I've come to expect from her books, but it's more subtle. There's no murder mystery, no trail of bodies, no obvious violence etc, but there's this subtle, quiet chill that, for me anyway, makes it more thrilling.

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I really like the author so I was thrilled to get an early read of this. It was complex, twisty and completely compelling. Definitely worth a read with a spare 24 hours to finish it!

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I was totally reeled in by this story, written from Keir and Elin’s voice flipping between them and past and present. Strong, interesting characters with clever developments which were absorbing as I tensely turned the pages towards the conclusion.

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