The Witch Elm

The Witch Elm

Book - 2018
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"Tana French's best and most intricately nuanced novel yet. . . Get ready for the whiplash brought on by its final twists and turns." - The New York Times

A brilliant new work of suspense from "the most important crime novelist to emerge in the past 10 years." ( Washington Post )

From the writer who "inspires cultic devotion in readers" ( The New Yorker ) and has been called "incandescent" by Stephen King, "absolutely mesmerizing" by Gillian Flynn, and "unputdownable" ( People ), comes a gripping new novel that turns a crime story inside out.

Toby is a happy-go-lucky charmer who's dodged a scrape at work and is celebrating with friends when the night takes a turn that will change his life - he surprises two burglars who beat him and leave him for dead. Struggling to recover from his injuries, beginning to understand that he might never be the same man again, he takes refuge at his family's ancestral home to care for his dying uncle Hugo. Then a skull is found in the trunk of an elm tree in the garden - and as detectives close in, Toby is forced to face the possibility that his past may not be what he has always believed.

A spellbinding standalone from one of the best suspense writers working today, The Witch Elm asks what we become, and what we're capable of, when we no longer know who we are.
Publisher: New York, New York : Viking, [2018]
ISBN: 9780735224629
Branch Call Number: FRENCH T
Characteristics: 509 pages ; 24 cm


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Nov 06, 2018

Good writing, good characterization, carefully woven plot, but I didn’t really like it. Toby, a young man who works in an art gallery is beat up by burglars and left for dead. He does not completely recover physically, including some brain damage and PTSD issues. He moves to a family country house to take care of a dying uncle. Renewing relationships with cousins brings up hints of forgotten past episodes, and then police show up to investigate a skeleton found in the hollow of a big elm in the garden. Because Toby has holes in his memory and overwhelming anxiety the reader can’t tell reality from fantasy, or whether the other characters are presenting honest pictures of the past. I found this interesting enough to keep reading (the writing is great) but the ending was unsatisfactory to me, and on the whole, I would not give it a rousing recommendation.

Hillsboro_RobinD Nov 04, 2018

First Dublin Murder Squad installment from the point of view of a suspect. Slow build, deep character development, cataclysmic ending.

Nov 04, 2018

NYT BR "extraordinary new novel - equal parts crime thriller and psychological study"

DPLjulie Oct 31, 2018

I just love Tana French-- judging from the waitlist I see she's enjoying the popularity she deserves. Read all her books, and don't worry about the order. They're brilliantly read, too, if you're an audio fan. I understand the comment about benefitting from an editor, but for me the length and featured "extraneous" turns are a large part of the charm.

Oct 29, 2018

A total page-turner of a literary mystery!

Oct 27, 2018

Although the plot of this book is very similar to her very excellent 'In the Woods,' Ms. French possibly wanted to pursue it from a different angle. However, this book would have greatly benefited from more extensive editing, weeding out HUGE chunks of extraneous dialogue. Otherwise, the storyline, mystery, & resolution all come together quite well.

KHaney Oct 25, 2018

Read this in two days, could not stop reading once I started. This is a pattern for me with Tana French's books, I'm a huge fan and was so excited to start her new novel. However, I have to say I prefer her Murder Squad series to this stand alone, and the main character Toby made me want to shake him on occasion. And let's not even start on the ending of the book....
Still a terrific read, another great book by Tana French.

Oct 19, 2018

Hey folks, this book IS available to borrow and read on Kindle devices. Choose the eBook option above (as opposed to Book or Audio) and click Request this Download. On the next screen, you'll see that Kindle is one of the options. When your turn comes (on the Holds list) you'll be able to choose the Kindle format for download.

Oct 09, 2018

Why is this not available to borrow on Kindle?


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JCLGraceB Oct 18, 2018

JCLGraceB thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over


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