What the Woods Keep is a book that asks us to question the line between science and belief. It’s a book that I think could do really well now with the recent Thor fandom.
On her eighteenth birthday, Hayden inherits her childhood home—on the condition that she uncover its dark secrets.
Hayden tried to put the past behind her, and it worked. She’s getting ready for college, living in a Brooklyn apartment, and hanging out with her best friend and roommate Del. But now it’s all catching up with her: her mother’s mysterious disappearance a decade before, her father’s outlandish theories about a lost supernatural race, and Hayden’s own dark dreams of strange symbols and rituals in the Colorado woods where she grew up.
As soon as Hayden arrives at her hometown, her friend Del in tow, it begins: Neighbors whisper secrets about Hayden’s mother; the boy next door is now all grown-up in a very distracting way; and Hayden feels the trees calling to her. And among them, deep in the woods, Hayden will discover something incredible—something that threatens reality itself.
What the Woods Keep is a story that borders on mystery and fantasy. There are these conspiracy theories, scientific knowledge, and family secrets. It’s a book that celebrates friendship, the ability to change our minds, and the value of the truth.
I’m going to list all the things I really enjoyed about What the Woods Keep:
- There’s this lovely interaction between science and belief. Hayden keeps telling us about science and different theories and it sets the tone for the book. What does it take for someone whose life is rooted in science to cross the line to what is traditionally thought of as fantasy?
- This same journey is mirrored in her father’s journey and their relationships is really fascinating to me as it’s complex and also kind of different to most father relationships I read about.
- There is such a heady mystery atmosphere that you can almost feel the fog. There’s all these supernatural incidents, but even just an old house with hidden secrets is enough to give me goosebumps.
- I adored the wit and commentary within the book – especially about Bluebeard and of course we are going to go in the one room we are destined not to go into.
- The friendship between Hayden and her best friend is really quite cute and heart warming. It’s also sort of a foundation for the story as far as Hayden’s emotional state.
- There are wild theories, family secrets, and magical realms. What else do you want?