Review: What Lies In The Woods - Vilma Iris | Lifestyle Blogger

They were eleven when they sent a killer to prison. They were heroes . . . but they were liars.

Naomi Shaw used to believe in magic. Twenty-two years ago, she and her two best friends, Cassidy and Olivia, spent the summer roaming the woods, imagining a world of ceremony and wonder. They called it the Goddess Game. The summer ended suddenly when Naomi was attacked. Miraculously, she survived her seventeen stab wounds and lived to identify the man who had hurt her. The girls’ testimony put away a serial killer, wanted for murdering six women. They were heroes.

And they were liars.

For decades, the friends have kept a secret worth killing for. But now Olivia wants to tell, and Naomi sets out to find out what really happened in the woods—no matter how dangerous the truth turns out to be.

Book Type:

Psychological Thriller

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What Lies In The Woods
By Kate Alice Marshall

Review: What Lies In The Woods

Three women sent a murderer to prison when they were eleven – now, twenty-two years later, as their past resurfaces, they must confront the lies they told.

Naomi, Liv, and Cass spent a summer in the woods of their small Pacific Northwest town, steeped in a world of fantasy and rituals – the Goddess Game. But their illusions ended when Naomi was brutally stabbed seventeen times. Miraculously she survived, and together with Liv and Cass, sent a killer to prison.

When the perpetrator dies, and a podcaster starts asking questions, the past barrels into the present, pressuring them to come clean about what really happened that summer. Worse yet, danger lurks in the shadows as a fissure deepens between them, and decades of tightly held secrets begin to unravel.

Marshall pens a novel taut with tension and tangled by secrets and betrayal, especially that characteristic of a small town. The premise felt fresh, especially as the narrative and its many twists begin to unfurl. Marshall deftly gives due runway to each character, as she explores complicit behavior and the ripple and long-reaching effects of its aftermath.

What I loved most is how drawn in I was, how every time I thought I had something figured out, there was a surprising twist to upend my theories, how Marshall continued to shift and re-shape the central crux in shades of ambiguous gray. Was it the lie? The cover up? The silence and complicity? Did the means justify the ends? As we divine what really transpired, an undercurrent of realness hits with an unexpected emotional depth, making the novel more impactful.

WHAT LIES IN THE WOODS is a haunting, layered, unflinching tale of friendship, betrayal, trauma, and grief.

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