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Editorial Reviews

A phenomenal addition to the Audible crime thriller collection, The Woods, is written by 2009 Crime Writers’ Association Crime Awards winner, Harlan Coben. This brilliant audiobook is narrated by a cast of talented voice performers. The mystery of what happened to the teenage murders at a summer camp deep in the woods 20 years ago was never solved. The families involved had no choice but to let the past go and move on. Now the brother of one of the victims is a successful prosecutor and his grief comes back to haunt him with a chilling new case that draws parallels with that of his sisters.

Publisher's Summary

Twenty years ago, four teenagers at summer camp walked into the woods at night. Two were found murdered, and the others were never seen again. Four families had their lives changed forever.

Now, two decades later, they are about to change again. For Paul Copeland, the county prosecutor of Essex, New Jersey, grief at the loss of his sister has only recently begun to subside. Cope, as he is known, is now dealing with raising his six-year old daughter alone after his wife has died of cancer. Balancing family life and a rapidly ascending career as a prosecutor distract him from his past traumas, but only for so long...

©2007 Harlan Coben (P)2008 Recorded Books LLC

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Richard
  • 08-26-08

A good story, not so well told...

The Woods is an interesting yarn, with enough twists to keep you listening until the end, but along the way there are also a number of frustrations and strange choices that may confuse and detract from the experience.

The first and most obvious point worthy of note is the slightly bizarre way in which the producers have chosen to cast the 'actors' for this tale. Rather than a single narrator doing all the voices, or an ensemble cast delivering a more dramatised version of the book, there is instead one male and one female narrator. During chapters when the main male character is most prominent, the male narrator takes his turn. When the female lead character is the main focus, the woman reads to us. What totally messes up this seemingly smart idea though, is that there are other important characters that can crop up at any time in any chapter, but are sometimes voiced by the man, and sometimes by the woman using different tones and accents, leaving you thinking 'hang on a minute - that guy didn't speak like that the last time I heard him!'

Coben's writing too, is erratic. At times gripping, but at others extremely cliched and amateurish. Throughout the story, all his main female characters are 'stunningly beautiful' to the point of being boring, leading you to wonder what kind of weird world the story is set in when a waitress, private eye, university professor, housewife and coroner are all such exquisite specimens of womanhood. The only exception is an equally stereotypical pseudo-lesbian (although it's never stated) character about whom the writer continuously repeats the same line about her 'sensible shoes'.

Repetition is something that you notice a lot in this story, perhaps because the narrators don't have a lot of ability to vary their tone. At times it seems the characters use very similar language and phrases whether they're a rich well-to-do father or a young female prostitute.

In all, not bad, but not as good as I'd hoped

29 of 29 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Val
  • 08-11-11

Expect a lot of padding

Essentially a good story though one which has appeared in other of his books - dead characters who aren't.. But in this book there is far too much extraneous description of things which do not advance the story one whit. Example: investigator going into the woods to get the information which was so important it could not be given over the phone, she had to be there. But lo, she is stopped by a boorish, over-zealous security man who will not let her in. Why did we have to have description of him, his face, his attitude etc etc? Finally he calls the Sheriff and we then get his description at length ... neither of these characters are relevant, indeed the security man disappears and the Sheriff makes one more appearance as a voice on the other end of the phone. Probably the author thought this would make us all the more eager to learn what was found in the woods. For this reader it led to irritated sighs and cries of "get on with it". Seems to me that writing a book every year is making this author redo his plots and then pad them out to the required word length. Not good enough, Harlan.

10 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Dr
  • 02-23-09

Satisfies on all levels.

A murder mystery where the victims have been dead for years, a personal tragedy, a current court room trial and an emerging romance create the setting of this satisfyingly intricate tale where the plots and sub-plots interweave, unravel and then come together again. Having male and female narators for the corresponding principle characters works really well. Be sure to listen right to the end of the epilogue as the twists and turns keep on coming to the last.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Jean
  • 04-23-11

Rubbish

Far too wordy', boring. If it had been half the length it wouldve been ok, but SO much unnecessary repetition.

8 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Cabaspre
  • 05-22-15

Wow! So many interwoven stories and all so good.

Any additional comments?

The story had many twists and turns but throughout everything was credible. The narrators were very good.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • r
  • 06-17-08

BRILLIANT listening

I could not wait to get into the car and go to work to hear the next installment.Very realistic characters and emotions.Good story line and a plot that kept twisting right to the end,It sure ranks as one of the best to date and I am addicted to audible.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Kim
  • 01-27-15

Excellent book

It exceeded my expectations- not my usual kind of read/listen but I couldn't stop listening. I'd definitely recommend it.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
  • LINDA ROWLAND
  • 05-10-17

just okay

I expected more from this book, I liked the title better than the book, at least that sounds exciting and full of promise. but no just okay.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • A P Stear
  • 04-24-17

Great book. Great ending

Really well narrated. Thoroughly enjoyed. highly recommend it. Read read read it. you won't regret

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Dr
  • 12-23-12

Another Masterpiece from Coben

My wife and I are BIG Harlan Coben fans, ever since we listened to Shelter, when it came on Promotion from Audible.

This latest purchase, The Woods did not disappoint either. It is a murder mystery novel, with plenty of twists and sub plots. The unusual step of having both male and female narrators worked well for us. The advice to listen to the very end, from other reviews, is a good suggestion.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • LeanneHills
  • 10-24-15

Really enjoyed The Woods - would recommend!

The woods although slightly predictable keeps you wanting to listen long after your car journey has ended.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Anonymous User
  • 11-17-17

Really enjoyed this book

Very interesting story with many twists and turns. I think I've found a new Author I can rely on for a good read