The Woods

  • by Harlan Coben
  • Narrated by Carol Monda, David Chandler
  • 12 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Harlan Coben was voted winner of the Bestseller Dagger, at the 2009 Crime Writers' Association's Crime Thriller awards .

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...

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Audible Editor 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.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

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
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- Richard

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.
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- Val

Book Details

  • Release Date: 11-06-2008
  • Publisher: Whole Story Audiobooks