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The Little Woods

3.49 of 5 stars 3.49  ·  rating details  ·  465 ratings  ·  123 reviews
Are the woods behind St. Bede's Academy really haunted, or does bad stuff just happen there? When Calista Wood, a new student, arrives midway through her junior year, St. Bede's feels like a normal school... until she discovers that a girl had disappeared a couple of months earlier. Some kids think she ran away, others think she was murdered, but it's only when Cally start ...more
Hardcover, 336 pages
Published July 10th 2012 by Schwartz & Wade (first published January 1st 2012)
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49th out of 349 books — 379 voters
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,734)
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yeah, i just had fun reading this book.

there are a lot of two-star reviews of this book on here, and while i find myself agreeing with a lot of the criticisms of the book: the fact that is doesn't hide its secrets well, the baffling but obligatory love triangle(s), the uneven delivery of the two mystery-plots, the emphasis on the beautiful beautiful people... i don't know - it was just a really fun and fast read, and i freaking loved cally.

and it is not because she is punk rock in a sea of rich
An eerie setting, a boarding school, a few missing girls - where do I sign up? I love the idea of this book, the vibe throughout is mysterious and slightly creepy. Yeah, maybe it wasn't perfect, it needed better characterization and some things made the plot feel a bit discombobulated, but I had a good time.

Those who enjoy thrillers, mysteries, and everything creepy will undoubtedly love the atmosphere we get inside this novel. I think, in particular, those who haven't read many books in the gen
Cassi aka Snow White Haggard
2.5 stars

Reading The Little Woods felt like watching a battle between the good and the bad. There is so much potential in this story, but sadly the poor execution is impossible to ignore.

The story itself was actually quite good. Cally goes off to St. Bedes boarding school. She gets a scholarship because 10 years ago her sister mysteriously disappeared while visiting the school. According the police, her sister died in a fire but since they never found the bodies Cally has always been skeptical.
Jay Kristoff
If I had to use one word to describe The Little Woods, it would be this:


Other than that, I'm at something of a loss. It's kind of like a slow motion collision between Twin Peaks and Gossip Girl set to a Bikini Kill soundtrack. It's spooky and dark and sad in a wonderful kind of way. It's about death and love and trying to find your way through all the places in between.

The prose is sharp and lyrical and full of 'Jesus, I wish I'd written that' lines. But when you're inside in The Litt
The longer I think about this one, the more disappointed I am in it. This story is contrived to the point that even when all of the pieces come together at the end, the plot holes and character holes are more gaping.

Ten years ago, Cally's sister and her best friend died after spending the night on the campus of St. Bede's academy (her sister's friend, Laurel, was the daughter of one of the teachers and that gave them free reign to stay there that evening). Now, Cally's decided mid-way through th
I don't get it - Not because the book was confusing, but because I don't understand what the point was.

The book itself was very cliche. It's the same played-out storyline that the majority of young adult books nowadays use - the boarding school, the unresolved murder mystery, the hot boys and love triangles, the mean girls and BFFs and not knowing who your real friends are. But I was hoping this book would have its own personality, and it didn't.

The murder mystery is too predictable. You knew fr
Sep 04, 2012 Jessica added it
Shelves: ya, 2012
When Calista Wood transfers to St. Bede’s Academy, she’s determined not to tell anyone about her family tragedy – her sister went missing in the woods here years ago. But when she finds out that the previous inhabitant of her room also went missing, she starts looking for answers. I love boarding school books, and this one features its share of damaged, potentially homicidal rich girls (Helen, Freddy, Pigeon, and Chelsea were all intriguing secondary characters); quirky scholarship students (Sop ...more
Frishawn Rasheed
This book is another example of a brilliant premise being lost in execution. The idea of Cally going back to the school that held the secret behind the loss of her sister so many years earlier is enough to tantalize any reader almost to the point of involuntary salivation that would make Pavlov's dogs jealous; but before you go all hungry eyes and run off in search of a copy...there are a few things you should know.

She is the saving grace of this book. She is a strong smart realist who is t
Amy Lignor
This is one author who has, with this title, completely blown adult suspense right out of the water.

The scene is a boarding school - one of those ritzy places that cater to the wealthy children who seem to want for nothing and only care about themselves. These are also the kids who have the power to bully someone they feel is ‘less’ than what they are on the ladder of success and popularity. But when they meet up with Cally Wood, an extremely intelligent and sarcastic girl who transfers during
I received an ARC (digital copy) of the book via Netgalley.

I wanted to like this book -- I requested it specifically because it fits into one of those sub-genres that really appeal to me (boarding school, YA, mystery with a hint of magical realism/supernatural). But I just couldn't get past a couple of things: #1, the author's overuse of big words from her thesaurus that just make no sense in the context of the sentence (and worse, don't fit with the character's voice or the tone of the passage
This book was not good. I don't really feel like writing a full review even. I was disappointed because I read the author's second book first and enjoyed it (though I only gave it 2.5 stars) but this was a mess. Instead of giving a review I wrote down my thoughts as I read (because about 50 pages in I already wanted to one star this thing). I realize the following list is probably overly nitpicky but it was easier to just list my thoughts than to make them a cohesive paragraph or two. Here are m ...more
Elizabeth B
I wasn't sure what to expect from this novel because the marketing information was a bit sketchy on what this novel was about. In retrospect, I'm glad about that because I was able to read it without any previous notions. I had a few problems with the book but they were all minor: mystery was easily deciphered early, too many characters thrown at the reader too quickly (even by the end of the novel I needed a cheat sheet to try and keep the people straight), way in which the mystery unfolded, an ...more
Sara Grochowski
I like well-written mysteries like The Little Woods... and I especially like when the author successfully incorporates creepy characters and a foreboding atmosphere.

I'll be honest, there's some predictability within the plot of The Little Woods, but this novel is both beautifully written and engaging, so I didn't mind that some things didn't feel very surprising. In fact, Templeman may have done this purposely because when I was surprised by a twist, I was really surprised. Enough so that I lite
I gave this a two because I thought the primary plot was interesting. However, the characters in the book are terrible!! ally is an outcast 16-17ish year old that wears "skater" clothes and supposedly is into punk rock, but manages to become the most attractive, popular girl at this Gossip-girl-esque boarding school, where the kids are described as entitled, rich snobs? Am I getting this right? Makes absolutely no sense. Apparently, every high school student at St. Bede's is incredibly rich and ...more
Kristy Sartain- Whispering Pretty Stories Reviews
It's refreshing to read a book that ends when the pages run out. :-)

Cally has been a fun character to get to know, except for her boyfriend relationship part. I guess that was thrown in to make her seem more like a teenager, or maybe so more people would turn on her. I don't know, but I wasn't impressed with it. It didn't seem in character at all.

I enjoyed the dynamics of boarding school life. There's always one of each of them in a group of girls, and I imagine the personality differences to be
Calista Wood arrives at St. Bede's Academy half way through the year. She's been granted a free ride, but there's more than school on her mind. Ten years ago, her sister and another girl mysteriously vanished outside this school. Now Calista is back, searching for answers to her sister's disappearance.

I'm sorry to say I didn't care for this book. While the opening chapter hooked me in, I felt pretty lost through the beginning half of the novel. Callie enters the boarding school with hope that th
Book Twirps
This one was … interesting. I requested it on Netgalley because I loved the premise: creepy boarding school, the new girl, a murder mystery — all things that I typically enjoy, but it just didn’t deliver. Maybe it was because I read this right after I read Dark Companion which has similar themes. I was still on a high after reading that book and had high expectations for this one, but it just didn’t grab me the way I hoped it would.

The story is very familiar. Still reeling from the death of her
the golden witch.
2.5/5 stars.

This one, while beautifully written, was quite the disappointment. While the author gets points for working magical realism into the story (and gorgeously, I might add), the fact that the hook doesn't sink in until nearly a third of the way in as well as how the main arc was dealt out in unevenly large chunks just didn't work for me. And that really saddens me because this book was so lovely and magical to read, had the arc pacing and hook been sorted out? I might have put it on my b
I literally could not put this book down. Whatever was on my to-do list had to wait a day and a half. Reminiscent of Donna Tartt's THE SECRET HISTORY both stylistically and thematically, THE LITTLE WOODS is a beautifully written, suspenseful, and deliciously disturbing story about a girl who enrolls at the boarding school where her sister allegedly died in a fire many years earlier, and soon finds herself at the center of a new, but parallel mystery that leads back to her past. Once Calista Wood ...more
The Little Woods is an interesting story about Cally Woods that lost a sister tragically when she was a child. In an attempt to move on with her life, she begins to attend a school located in the same area her sister disappeared. However, the boarding school isn't quite what she expected.

I liked Cally and was routing for her the entire time. I'm surprised she managed to hold things together long enough to attend school despite all of the crazy things going on around her.

I only had a few minor i
PLot= Many people say the woods of St Bede is haunted but it may not be true because once people is inside the woods they disappear and none make it out of the woods alive.
Characters= Cally= our main girl, I love how she moves to this private university after her sister's Clare disappear I always love these kinds of girl because they can go through alot to find the ultimate truth. I love much she cares for her friends and her love life sucks but she cares abou
I plucked this one out of the YA section while my kids were doing their thing making some awesome picture frames with Miss Sue, our rad British librarian. I read 50 pages. The premise sounded good, but the execution was one big cliche. Everyone in the book was like a cartoon character. Everyone had a stereotypical hipster attitude. I tried to ignore the bad dialogue and get on with the story, but it just got to be too much. Maybe on page 51 everyone drops the sarcasm and the book becomes amazing ...more
Erica Alyson
This book was a quick and fun read. I really enjoyed guessing who the bad guy was. I was so hooked.

Cally is going to St. Bede's to hopefully find out what happened to her sister there. But she doesn't want anyone to know Claire was her sister. Upon arriving she finds out the room she is staying in is only available because the girl who previous lived there went missing.

She made some interesting friends and some nice friends, and managed to date a guy or two possibly at the same time. All the wh
Jun 09, 2015 Christie rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: ya
Ten years after the death of her older sister, Clare, Cally Woods gets accepted at St. Bede’s Academy, a boarding school in the Sierra region of California. It’s a big deal for Cally: her father is dead, her mother is a mostly absent drunk and Cally’s been offered a full-ride scholarship to St. Bede’s because of what happened to her sister. Seems that as a kid, Clare had visited St. Bede’s with a friend whose mother taught there and “on the third night of her visit, she and her friend had vanish ...more
Ten years ago her sister disappeared while visiting St. Bede's Academy. Cally is awarded a scholarship her junior year to St. Bede's and sets off to find herself and possibly figure out what happened to her sister all those years ago. Suspenseful, flirty and witty Templeman hits all the right notes with this fast paced thriller. Instances of underage drinking, sex and frank mentions of drug use make this more appropriate for older readers. With twists and turns, this mystery will keep you guessi ...more
Okay, first off, I was very close to giving this book one star, but I decided to be generous and give it two stars. I first saw this book on goodreads maybe six or nine months ago. I loved the cover (I still love the cover) so I clicked on it. The cliche-sounding synopsis made me not want to read it, but then I eventually couldn't stop thinking about the pretty cover, so I decided that I would eventually read this book. So yesterday, I finally decided to buy it on kobo and read it. The sample of ...more
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I'd give this 2.5 stars.

Things I liked about the book:
The setting-mysterious woods, a boarding school that was removed enough from society without being totally separate

The mystery-I like the idea of their being these mysterious deaths surrounding the woods, but I'm still not sure how I feel about the mysteries themselves (Iris' story in particular felt weak)

The mood-appropriately creepy and suspicious; I trusted no one.

The puzzle box-who doesn't like a good puzzle?

I really didn't know where thi
I was teased by this novel through Goodreads (you know on that little thread that pops through when you like one book it suggests more like it), and was quickly drawn in my the cover and then completely snagged by the synopsis.

How could you not be drawn in by such gothic imagery as a boarding school that is named after a saint (St. Bede is the patron saint of English writers and historians), shadowy woods (as hinted at by the cover) and a good ol’ caper of a missing girl?

The main characters are
Stroll Down
Okay this book was totally a waste of my time. I tried it because it has a similar plot to James Dawson's Hollow Pike but it was a total disappointment because like, just get straight to the point, will you? So I was interested in the story plot but this book is like 3/4 unromantic romance and 1/4 story. Are you kidding me? Hey hey hey what's a storybook for? I mean, yeah, a little romance is acceptable but please please please I want to read the story don't make the main character into a lovesi ...more
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