The Wych Elm

The Wych Elm by Tana French - Bibliophile.grWhat do we hide inside ourselves?

Toby has always considered himself lucky. And people have always assumed he can get away with anything. But one night can change anything. One night is all it takes for Toby’s life to change forever.

The Ivy House

After an attack at his house, Toby seeks refuge at the Ivy House. At his uncle’s house, where he spent all his childhood and teenage summers, he hopes to recover and find the peace he desperately needs.

But another surprise waits for him: there, in the garden that guards his fondest memories, a skull lays hidden in the old wych elm. Since the estate has belonged to the family for almost a century, who can have been the person that hid a body in the old tree?

Provocative, nail-biting horror from a master of the genre

From a master of crime fiction, Tana French, comes another fast-paced, outstanding novel that will definitely become a must-read in 2019.

Storytelling stands out in this crime novel, that is, in fact, so much more than that. This is an exploration of the human mind and psyche, one that happens simultaneously from both the side of the victim, and the one of the assailant. French uses two events that occur close to one another to explore our main character, Toby.

“What if I never got another day in my life when I was normal again?”

By following his everyday life from his assault to the discovery of the skull and onward to the discovery of the murderer, the reader sees and understands the hero from every angle. Past and present are both explored, without leaving a single point f boredom. It is a fascinating read, and a great exploration.

But wait, that’s not all: French actually touches subjects that are extremely difficult, and manages to weave them expertly into a crime story with multiple twists and turns. Aspects such as bullying, responsibility for one’s actions and human instincts are things that naturally cross the reader’s mind as they delve deeper into the story – and it all happens during nail-biting binge reading and trying to figure out the truth behind not one, but two crimes in one story.

“But we’re so desperate, aren’t we, to believe that bad luck only happens to people who deserve it.”

And then, of course, there is the aspect of luck: something our main character wonders about while the story starts, and again when it ends. After a full circle, it all comes back to the beginning. Masterfully created, the plot runs an intelligent circle, and the end will leave you stunned.

The Wych Elm is one of those books you just wish never ended. Absolutely enjoyable from page one to the very last sentence of the very last page, this is the crime book that will definitely climb to the top of readers’ preferences during the year. Absolutely recommended for all fans of crime fiction and the mystery genre, but I would also suggest every reader gave this story a chance – you will not be disappointed.