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The Farm

3.55  ·  Rating details ·  22,123 ratings  ·  2,797 reviews
Until the moment he received a frantic call from his father, Daniel believed his parents were headed into a peaceful, well-deserved retirement. They had sold their home and business in London, and said "farewell to England" with a cheerful party where all their friends had gathered to wish them well on their great adventure: setting off to begin life anew on a remote, buco ...more
Paperback, 400 pages
Published February 13th 2014 by Simon & Schuster UK
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Colby Inescapably, "Rubbish". It grieves me to so assess; his other books are so grippingly good!…moreInescapably, "Rubbish". It grieves me to so assess; his other books are so grippingly good!(less)
Peter Boels I really enjoyed this book too and was pulled into the story from page one. I read it completely in one single day!! That's why I gave it the full fiv…moreI really enjoyed this book too and was pulled into the story from page one. I read it completely in one single day!! That's why I gave it the full five stars.

Maybe some people wanted Tom Rob Smith to write another Leo Demidov sort of story after his trilogy, but I think "The farm" is at least as good as that. I really love his filmic style and the way he makes you want to keep on reading with his typical style of ending a chapter.(less)

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Average rating 3.55  · 
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 ·  22,123 ratings  ·  2,797 reviews

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and that is why we don't keep secrets.

this is one of those psychological thrillers with a possibly-unreliable narrator, a maybe/maybe not crime, and a boatload of both family and smalltown secrets.

daniel is 29, living in london with his boyfriend mark, and working a job that is not making the most of his expensive educational background. his parents have retired after selling their business and properties, and moved to a small town in sweden, near the place his mother tilde grew up, and then ra
Jan 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Inspired by the real life psychotic episode experienced by his own mother, Tom Rob Smith has crafted a powerful and affecting study in the disguise of a crime novel, as to the effect of a similar incident on the very fabric of a family. Daniel resides happily in London with his partner Mark, and with the hustle and bustle of everyday life, and the less frequent communication with family, believes his mother and father to be happy and secure in their retirement to Sweden from the UK. However, fol ...more
Feb 05, 2014 rated it it was ok
2.5 Stars

Having read and absolutely loved Child 44 Child 44 (Leo Demidov, #1) by Tom Rob Smith I was very excited and had pre ordered my hard copy of The Farm by Tom Rob Smith.

The praise on the blurb of this novel really leaves you to believe you are about to embark on a " Chilling, hypnotic, and thoroughly compelling novel. You will not read a better triller this year"

The Novel is set in Sweden and tells the story of Chris and Tilde who retire there to a farm in a remote area to recapture what could only be considered the goo
Jun 18, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: public-library
An unsettling phone call from a distraught father to his grown son, quickly followed by an equally disturbing call from the son's panicked mother.  Father claims mother has completely lost touch with reality, while the mother boldly states that anything his dad has told him about her is a lie.  Who to believe?  Mum or Dad?

Moving to a small isolated farm in Sweden should have been a little slice of heaven for Daniel's retired parents.  Instead, before the year is out, it has all gone terribly wro
Mar 31, 2014 rated it did not like it
What an anticlimax. I'm confused by the great ratings this book has received. The entire story was transparent, at best. The characters, who ended up being important, were under developed, and Daniels motives and reasons were flakey. And the ending...what was that about? I was really waiting for so etching MORE or BIGGER than how it ended. I feel short changed, and felt this could've been SUCH a better story, written in someone else's hands. ...more
Mar 12, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This for me is a 3.5 star book, but for once I will round it up instead of down.

So a short synopsis: this book is about a man who gets a call from his father one day telling him that his mother is unwell and they've entered her into a mental asylum. The man then gets another call after from his mother and she says to him that everything the father said is a lie and that she's fine. So this novel follows the story that the mother is telling the son and why her husband had her committed.

Someone on
Patrice Hoffman
The Farm is the first novel I've read by Tom Rob Smith. There's been a lot of praise for his other crime novel Child 44 so I figured why not give him a chance. Plus the premise of a woman gone mad who needs to defend her delusions is always a good story.

The Farm begins with Daniel receiving a call from his father warning him that his mum is not well and has been committed. Not too long after that call, Mum arrives to London hoping to have an ally in her beloved son. This is the first time Daniel
Sam Quixote
Mar 15, 2015 rated it really liked it
Daniel’s parents, Chris and Tilde, have retired to a farm in the Swedish countryside. All is going well, he thinks, and the only problem is how he’s going to reveal to them that he’s gay. That is until he receives a strange email from his mother and then a phone call from his father - Tilde is insane, says Chris, and she needs help. Meanwhile Tilde, arriving in London alone to meet Daniel, insists that she’s being hunted by a group of murderers, including Chris, after she uncovered a horrific co ...more
Julie Christine
I have a hard time pigeon-holing this in the thriller category, since two-thirds of the narrative takes place at a kitchen table in a London apartment in the form of a conversation between a mother and son. It's a testament to Smith's confidence as a writer that he spools out a story in a nearly all tell, very little show fashion. That doesn't mean it always works. After repeated cutbacks of scene to that London kitchen, I began to roll my eyes and wish SOMEONE WOULD GET TO THE BLOODY POINT ALRE ...more
May 22, 2015 rated it really liked it
From some of the negative reviews i have read, I understand that lots of people seem to have been disappointed by the plot. But this is not a novel in which the plot is king, it is about the nature of indiviudal perception and memory. That we all have such different views of the novel speaks to the essence of the very theme it explores.

I, personally, really like stories that play with ideas of truth, who it belongs to and who creates it, what happens when one person's truth clashes against anot
Dec 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is such a good book, a little disappointed with the last page but the story is solid and the revelations are very interesting. A story is told from one point of view at first but there is so much more to find out and we do once the second point of view is analyzed. It is a very fast paced book and if you like mysteries, you’ll like this one .
I picked this book up randomly last year to use a giftcard balance that was going to expire. The premise sounded interesting enough (and gave me the sort of vibe that the movie The Visit gave me... Something is REALLY wrong here.)... but upon reading it, I'm just not sure how I felt about it.

Everything was wrapped up nice and neat at the end, all mysteries solved and all questions answered, but I just can't help feeling like there's something missing.

When we first open the book and meet our na
Jan 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Wow, this is an excellent book. The story's so compelling and gripping I read it in one go.

The story revolves around Daniel and his parents who returned a few months ago to Sweden, the homeland of Daniel's mom, to relish their retirement at a farm: one day, Daniel is called by his dad and confronted with shocking news: his mother behaved strangely for quite some time now, accused her neighbors and husband of some mysterious crime and was finally brought to section herself into a psychiatric ward
Michael Robotham
Feb 24, 2015 rated it really liked it
This is a wonderful psychological thriller that never lets the reader get comfortable. Structurally it is a triumph because so much of the information must be fed slowly to the reader, building up false layers that sound completely plausible, yet can be interpreted in different ways.
Jan 27, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Daniel lives in London with his partner, Mark. His parents, Chris and Tilde, have retired to a remote farm in Sweden – the homeland his mother left many years before. He believes them to be content and well and uses his image of them as happy and busy in their new life as the reason why he has distanced himself from them. For Daniel has made excuses not to visit – rather than explain that his career is not going well or introduce Mark to them, he has contented himself with emails and vague promi ...more
Feb 27, 2018 rated it liked it
If I know one thing about this author it is his tendency to write slow, detailed stories that will almost bore the reader into sleep, and then end it all with a big explosive bang to wake you up and place you firmly back into the plot. I think this applies to every one of his four books that I've read. Daniel, an adult son living in England, is called by his heretofore idyllicly married parents to act as a sort of judge and jury to what they are experiencing on their farm in Sweden. Chris, his f ...more
Paul Lockman
Dec 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
I found this book a little difficult to rate but in the end I am going with 3.5 stars rounded up to 4. The main reason I found it hard to rate was that the first 150 pages or so are a bit of a slog, I can imagine many people not persevering with it but I did persevere and I was interested in the story and the characters thus my rounding up to 4 stars.

Daniel’s mum Tilde has arrived at his London apartment from Sweden and is scared out of her whits that her husband Chris questions her mental stabi
May 13, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014
Tom Rob Smith’s new stand-alone novel “The Farm” (after the highly successful Child 44 trilogy) shows his diversity in story-telling.  This is not an action-based, in your face, thriller like his previous work, but a psychological mystery, a coming out of sorts as a writer.

The mystery behind the farm is a mystery itself.  Mostly told from the perspective of the mother (Tilde) of the main character, Daniel, it starts off with a phone call from his father (Chris) saying how mentally ill Tilde is a
Steven Z.
Dec 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing
When I began reading THE FARM, Tom Rob Smith’s new book I had certain expectations having read his trilogy of thrillers dealing with the Soviet Union; CHILD 44, THE SECRET SPEECH, and AGENT 6. From the first paragraph I grew curious, but very surprised. The story line was nothing like his previous books. This effort begins with a phone call from Chris, living in rural Sweden calling his son, Daniel who resides in London. Daniel’s parents had lived in London, but because their finances had succum ...more
Feb 06, 2020 rated it liked it
Not bad at all. Although reading it took some effort, I think it was intended by author as part of the character creation
Mar 21, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2015
Dear Author Tom Rob Smith......Seriously? That's the ending you're going with?

This book was starting out to be one of my favorite books of all time! It was quite brilliant and written perfectly. I couldn't wait to read a word, a page, anything - picking it up at red lights, while curling my hair, brushing my teeth or cooking dinner. I was intrigued and excited, I couldn't wait to turn the page.

The beginning pulled me in and I was lost in he world of Sweden and the lives of Tilde, Daniel and Ch
Dimitris Passas (TapTheLine)
Feb 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
''The Farm'' is a crime/mystery novel, written by Tom Rob Smith (''Child 44'', ''London Spy'', ''American Crime Story'') and it is a book I finished in one day (two sittings), something that rarely happens to me. I was immediately drawn to the story which begins when Daniel, being one of the two protagonists/narrators and living in London, gets a call from his father (Chris) who has recently moved permanently to Sweden with his wife, on an isolated farm somewhere in the
countryside. Chris says t
The Farm presents itself as a taut, gripping thriller in which a man is torn between different stories told to him by his parents. Daniel's father claims his mother is not of sound mind, while she insists she has uncovered a terrible conspiracy surrounding their new home, an isolated farm in Sweden. Most of the narrative is given over to the mother's - Tilde's - story, as heard by Daniel; he interjects occasionally, but on the whole this is a very traditional, chronological account of events. On ...more
Anna Kļaviņa

What happened in summer 1963? And how it is linked to summer 2013?

I was eager to read Smith's latest book, as I loved Child 44 and yet I was not sure how much I'll like it because the last book in the trilogy was a disappointment.

The Farm was better than I expected. A well written page turner as Child 44 but also with more layers then that.

And more personal. Few years ago, Smith's father phoned to tell him he suspected his mum was mentally ill. Hours later, she arrived in Britain.

Aug 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was a quick read that held my attention from beginning to end. I loved the suspense and I wasn't disappointed with the ending. I did not find it predictable. If I had one complaint, I might say that the conclusion was almost too neat but I loved the book and easily rated it with a 5 star. ...more
Chris Steeden
May 18, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A terrible crime has been committed on a Swedish farm. Or has it? That is the premise of Tom Rob Smith’s novel. The author is of Child 44 fame and has written a rather compelling book here.

Set in rural Sweden and London. We follow Mark who is a rooftop garden designer in London. His parents have retired to a farm in Sweden. His mother, Tilde, is Swedish. She had left home at the age of 16 and moved to England. She has her secrets. Mark has a secret as well which he has kept from his parents. His
Nancy Oakes
I liked this one.

for a longer look at this novel, feel free to click on over to my online reading journal; otherwise, this is the short version.

The Farm is a multilayered story within a story within a story that is slowly peeled back like the proverbial onion until you reach its core. The opening sequence is a total grabber. The narrator, Daniel, receives a call from his dad Chris telling him that his mom Tilde is sick, that she's been "imagining things -- terrible, terrible things," and that s
Shelleyrae at Book'd Out

"Promise that you'll listen to everything I say with an open mind. All I ask for is an open mind. Promise me you'll do that, that's why I've come to you. Promise me!"

Daniel is shocked when his father rings in tears to announce his mother is sick, not physically ill but mentally, and he has been forced to admit her to a psychiatric hospital. Distraught, Daniel makes immediate plans to travel to Sweden where his parents now live, but before he can board the plane his mother arrives in London, clut
Tracey Allen at Carpe Librum
Oh my goodness! I've been hanging out to read The Farm by Tom Rob Smith ever since I heard the premise:
Daniel's parents have retired to Sweden, and all seems well until he receives a call from his father.
"Your mother's not well. She's been imagining things - terrible, terrible things. She's had a psychotic breakdown, and has been committed to a mental hospital."

But then his mother rings to say: "I'm sure your father has spoken to you. Everything that man has told you is a lie. I'm not mad. I do
First off- this is not Child 44. This is not an action/ thriller so if that is what you are looking for - select another book. This is a mystery.

Daniel gets a phone call from his father that his mother has gone crazy and has been institutionalized ( hello 1800's ). Rushing to the airport Daniel gets a call from his mother that she has escaped Sweden and that his father and others are out to "get" her. Who to believe? Is the mother a victim or an unreliable narrator? That is the mystery.

The auth
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Tom Rob Smith (born 1979) is an English writer. The son of a Swedish mother and an English father, Smith was raised in London where he lives today. After graduating from Cambridge University in 2001, he completed his studies in Italy, studying creative writing for a year. After these studies, he worked as a scriptwriter.

His first novel, Child 44, about a series of child murders in Stalinist Russia

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