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In the House in the Dark of the Woods

Narrated by: Vanessa Johansson
Length: 5 hrs and 20 mins
3.5 out of 5 stars (75 ratings)

Regular price: $29.65

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Publisher's Summary

The eerie, disturbing story of one of our perennial fascinations - witchcraft in colonial America - wrapped up in a lyrical novel of psychological suspense.

"Once upon a time there was and there wasn't a woman who went to the woods."
 

In this horror story set in colonial New England, a law-abiding Puritan woman goes missing. Or perhaps she has fled or abandoned her family. Or perhaps she's been kidnapped, and set loose to wander in the dense woods of the north. Alone and possibly lost, she meets another woman in the forest. Then everything changes.

On a journey that will take her through dark woods full of almost-human wolves, through a deep well wet with the screams of men, and on a living ship made of human bones, our heroine may find that the evil she flees has been inside her all along. 

In the House in the Dark of the Woods is a novel of psychological horror and suspense told in Laird Hunt's characteristically lyrical prose style. It is the story of a bewitching, a betrayal, a master huntress and her quarry. It is a story of anger, of evil, of hatred and of redemption. It is the story of a haunting, a story that makes up the bedrock of American mythology, but told in a vivid way you will never forget.

©2018 Laird Hung (P)2018 Hachette Audio

Critic Reviews

"With the surprise of fairy tale and fable but with the complexity of one's favorite literary novel, Laird Hunt again gives us fierce, complex women living in American history." (TaraShea Nesbit, author of The Wives of Los Alamos)

"Hunt's accomplished prose creates the atmosphere of possibility and danger that lurks in the best fairy tales, where anything can happen but everything has a cost. Highly recommended for fans of that amorphous border between fantasy, horror, and literary fiction as found in the work of Kelly Link, in Joy Williams' The Changeling (1978), or in Angela Carter's The Bloody Chamber (1979)." (Booklist, Starred Review)

"Like Richard Hughes' In Hazard or Arthur Machen's 'The White People,' Hunt's In the House in the Dark of the Woods tells a dark story brightly, leading the reader to see and sense the things that the protagonist isn't saying, and maybe can't even acknowledge. A wonderful, luminous, sly tale that orbits around a very grim core, growing darker and darker as it goes. A stunning contemporary fairy tale." (Brian Evenson, author of A Collapse of Horses)

What members say

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

A Darkly Tinted Whimsy

Narrative poetry is the best I can come to describing the author's style in this modern fairy tale. The sense of wonder and ethereal other worldliness is helped along by intermittent bursts of rhymed meter within the story's rich prose. This is the first Laird Hunt piece I've listened too and found myself captivated by the sheer strangeness of the tale. The narration was strong and brought life to the many female characters within. I'd strongly recommend for those with a inclination to fantasy and literary tales.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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No thank you

As much as I wanted to like this book, I found it to be fairly nonsensical.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

what?????

This had to be one of the most unusual stories I have ever listened to. It put me in mind of Alice in Wonderland. A lot of times it made no sense!!! Going to return it.

3 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • S. Grant
  • rocky mountains of CO
  • 01-13-19

better to read it

this was hard to listen to, as you are in the dark on the plot the entire time and the author is purposefully vague For plot reasons. I enjoyed it but needed to read with my eyes on this one.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Grown up fairy tale

I liked it, the story that is, not so much the characters. But, I wonder, if that was not how it was meant. I thought I had figured it out, and for the most part was correct - but not the why. When that was revealed it all clicked. " Ah, well there you go" moment.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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This stayed with me

The first 3/4 was easy to follow. The language wavered between being beautifully poetic and overwrought. At its best, it was a totally unique sensory experience. At its worst, it felt a little bit like a 17/18th century A Handmaid's Tale (the TV version). I really don't think of this as a horror book. I think I understand the cyclical metaphor of the last 1/4 of the book. If there was supposed to be a more specific reading of wtf happened, then it was lost on me. I was annoyed when I finished it, but the deliciousness of the feeling of the overall book has stayed with me so it is kind of worth it? It's only like 5 hours, why not try it?

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  • kw
  • 10-28-18

Interesting! I was surprised how much I enjoyed it.

This was a good listen and an interesting fairy tale. At first I wasn’t sure but it really sucked me in. I’m glad I got it!

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Started off strong

Hooked from chapter one. Then lost me somewhere before the end. Certainly entertaining. Four stars