The Wych Elm by Tana French
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Genres: Fiction, Mystery, Thriller
Publication Date: 21st February 2019
Synopsis/Blurb (taken from Goodreads):
“One night changes everything for Toby. A brutal attack leaves him traumatised, unsure even of the person he used to be. He seeks refuge at the family’s ancestral home, the Ivy House, filled with cherished memories of wild-strawberry summers and teenage parties with his cousins.
But not long after Toby’s arrival, a discovery is made. A skull, tucked neatly inside the old wych elm in the garden.
As detectives begin to close in, Toby is forced to examine everything he thought he knew about his family, his past, and himself.
A spellbinding standalone from a literary writer who turns the crime genre inside out, The Wych Elm asks what we become, and what we’re capable of, if we no longer know who we are.”
My Thoughts & Review
Ok, where do I start with this one. This one was yet another overdue eARC waiting to be read from NetGalley. I couldn’t decide which book to start so I did a poll on my twitter and Instagram and you guys decided for me. Thank you so much for your help.
Now I was really excited and looking forward to starting this one, and to be honest I thought I would get through it pretty fast but how wrong I was. This one took me over a week and a half to finish. In fact, it took me about 5 days just to get half way through it.
The story started off strong with a good premise but then it just slowed down and took way too long to get to the main mystery part of the book. I found the plot and pace of this book to be too slow and because of this I even considered DNF-ing it, but then the minor mystery part creeped in and my interest peaked a little and I carried on reading. But then the mystery got solved so fast and then I couldn’t really work out why I carried on reading.
In fact, it was so slow that I skipped a few chapters and I still didn’t miss anything important.
The book is written from the point of the view of the main character Toby and is written in first person I don’t mind this but what I found unrealistic was the language used during the conversations. Personally, I haven’t heard people taking in this way. But then again maybe I live in the wrong area.
Don’t get me wrong there was some good character development, but it just took way too long. I understand that we need to build up development of character especially The main character Toby in this book but I think it could have been done much quicker. Personally, I didn’t take a liking to the main character. I found him to be an annoying, ungrateful twat at times.
Overall I felt this book could have been shorter and faster paced. This was my first ever read for a Tana French book but it was very disappointing. I know many people have loved this book and have given it glowing reviews, but it just wasn’t for me. This is another book I wouldn’t personally recommend but at the same time I wouldn’t tell people not to read either.
I would like to thank the publishers Viking and NetGalley for providing me with an eARC in return for an honest and unbiased review.
Have you read this book? What did you think of it? Leave a comment below and let’s have a chat.